Projects

Develop Home Water Works Website

Client: Alliance for Water Efficiency

Term: 2010 - 2012

HWW link logo

Working with a grant from the Home Depot Foundation, Aquacraft and the Alliance for Water Efficiency developed the Home Water Works website - www.home-water-works.org - a consumer oriented web resource that includes a powerful residential water calculator. 

The Water Calculator, based on an original design from The Field Museum in Chicago is an interative tool that estimates residential water use based on user responses to a simple set of questions.  The Water Calcuator utilizes per capita demand curves developed by Aquacraft from various residential end use studies.  Outdoor use is estimated based on the local climate zone, irrigated area, landscape, and irrigation method.

 Aquacraft is a proud member and bronze charter sponsor of the Alliance for Water Efficiency.


Update Residential End Uses of Water

Client: Water Research Foundation, Alliance for Water Efficiency, 9 participating utilities

Term: 2011 - 2013

This study will investigate water use patterns in residential housing across the US and Canada.  The fundamental goal of this project is to comprehensively update and expand the 1999 Residential End Uses of Water Study (REUWS) conducted by Aquacraft.  To achieve this goal, Aquacraft and our team will collect new data and building upon the 1999 REUWS and other similar end use studies conducted since 1999 to obtain detailed information on where water is used in single-family residences in North America and to evaluate the socio-economic factors that impact water use.

This project kicked off in mid-2011 and is scheduled to be completed by late 2013.

 Research Team

  • Aquacraft, Inc.
  • Hazen and Sawyer
  • National Research Center
  • Veritec Consulting
  • Dr. Benedykt Dziegielewski

Analysis of Water Use in New Single Family Homes 

Client: Salt Lake City and 8 participating utilities and the US EPA (grant)

Term: 2005 - 2010

This long awaited major field study of  where and how much water is used in new homes in the US has found that building to the WaterSense specification results in 19.4% water savings indoors vs. standard new homes built over the past few years.  The Analysis of Water Use in New Single Family Homes study was conducted by a team lead by Aquacraft, Inc. and funded by a consortium of nine water utilities and by a grant from the US EPA.

The study found that a household with three members living in a detached single-family home built to to the WaterSense new home specification used an average of 35.6 gallons per capita per day (gpcd) compared to 44.2 gpcd used indoors by residents on standard new homes, a 19.4% reduction.  The most significant water savings were accomplished through installation of WaterSense labeled high-efficiency toilets (HETs), WaterSense labeled faucet aerators, and clothes washers that were ENERGY STAR qualified with a water factor (WF) of less than or equal to 6.0 gallons of water per cycle per cubic foot of capacity.

Based on the findings of the study, the report includes a proposed set of indoor household water efficiency benchmarks as shown in the table below.

Category

Indoor Household Efficiency Benchmark for Family of 3    (gallons per household per day)

Description

Baseline/Existing homes

190 gphd

Existing homes in the general population built prior to 2000.

Standard New Homes

130 gphd

Homes complying with the 1992 Energy Policy Act plus 40% equipped with HE clothes washers

High-Efficiency New Homes

110 gphd

Homes meeting the WaterSense New Home specification for fixtures and appliances.

The report concludes that homes built to the WaterSense New Home Specification offer meaningful water savings compared with the existing stock of single-family homes and compared with new homes built to comply with current plumbing codes and standards.  Download full report here.

 Research Team

  • Aquacraft, Inc.
  • National Research Center

Water Budgets and Rate Structures: Innovative Management Tools

Client: Water Research Foundation, US EPA, City of San Diego, California Urban Water Consevation Council and 6 water utilities

Term: 2005 - 2008

 “Water budgets”—volumetric allotments of water to customers based on customer-specific characteristics and conservative resource standards—are an innovative means of improving water use efficiency. Once thought to be impractical because of technological constraints, water budgets linked with an increasing block rate structure have been implemented successfully in more than 20 utilities.  As utilities develop advanced customer information systems and geographical information systems these rate structures are expected to be applied more broadly.  Water budget rate structures are attractive to water agencies searching for stable revenue generation, improved customer acceptance, increased water use efficiency, augmented affordability of nondiscretionary customer water consumption, and improved drought response.  A growing number of utility managers are finding that water budgets offer potential benefits to water utilities and their customers in coping with increasing water scarcity and rising costs.

The objective of this research project, (funded by grants from the EPA, AwwaRF, and a consortium of water utilities) was to examine water budgets and their potential value to North American water utilities and the varying applications of the water budget concept that have been adapted to different conditions.  Key issues identified include: different practical approaches to water budget rate structures, the benefits and challenges of these approaches, the potential uses of water budgets during drought, and important steps in the water budget implementation process.

 Research Team

  • Aquacraft, Inc.
  • A & N Technical Services
  • Lyle Summers

Download a 2009 article based on this study here.


View an extensive listing of completed Aquacraft projects here.