Watering Rules & Drought Restrictions

San Antonio Water System uses watering rules and restrictions, established by city ordinance, to proactively manage the region’s water resources. The rules & restrictions limit water use based on specific levels of the Edwards Aquifer.

Year-Round Watering Rules

Year-Round watering rules are in effect when the Edwards Aquifer level is above 660 feet mean sea level at the monitored well.


Stage 1 Drought Restrictions

Stage 1 begins when the 10-day rolling average of the aquifer level drops to 660 feet mean sea level at the monitored well. Watering with an irrigation system, sprinkler or soaker hose is allowed only once a week before 11 a.m. or after 7 p.m. on your designated watering day.


Stage 2 Drought Restrictions

Stage 2 begins when the 10-day rolling average of the aquifer level drops to 650 feet mean sea level at the monitored well. Watering with an irrigation system or sprinkler is allowed only once a week from 7-11 a.m. and 7-11 p.m.


Stage 3 Drought Restrictions

Stage 3 begins when the 10-day rolling average of the aquifer level drops to 640 feet mean sea level at the monitored well. Landscape watering is allowed only EVERY OTHER WEEK, from 7-11 a.m. and 7-11 p.m.


Stage 4 Drought Restrictions

Stage 4 restrictions may be declared at the discretion of the City Manager upon completion of a 30-day monitoring period following Stage 3 declaration.


Conservation Ordinance

The conservation ordinance helps align conservation goals with population growth and long-term water supply strategies.