Public Works Department - Water Conservation

Be Water Wise - Prevent Irrigation Overspray

Prevent irrigation overspray

It damages pavement and contributes to stormwater pollution, and is an unsightly waste of a valuable resource. It is called nuisance water and it can be prevented.

Nuisance water - chronic running water in gutters and street crossings, standing water where it doesn't belong, wet areas that never dry - is a common eyesore. But did you know that in many cases, the solution is simple? The vast majority of nuisance water could be eliminated if people would follow proper watering schedules, adjust sprinkler timers, and maintain irrigation systems.

Overspray is a major culprit. Overspray is water from a sprinkler that lands outside the planted area on a sidewalk or roadway. This is caused by poor sprinkler maintenance and/or design. Another common cause of nuisance water, although less easy to remedy, is poor landscape design, such as grass planted on a sloping bank along the roadway.

To locate possible nuisance water, look for runoff from an irrigated area when the sprinklers are on. This indicates that all the water is not entering the soil and could be a sign of overwatering, a malfunctioning sprinkler, a broken waterline, or improper landscape design. If the problem is not remedied, sidewalks, gutters, and streets can become slippery with algae. It can also lead to deterioration of asphalt pavement and can contribute to the creation of potholes in the street.

Irrigation overspray also contributes to stormwater pollution by causing fertilizers applied to the landscape areas to be washed away and flow into the gutter. This enters our storm drain system and eventually flows into our ocean which can result in beach closures due to high contaminant levels.

If you are responsible for the maintenance of the landscape areas at your business, please inspect your irrigation system to ensure that it is operating properly. If not, please advise your property management company of the existing conditions and request that the needed irrigation repairs be made. Failure to make the repairs could make you subject to issuance of a Notice of Non-Compliance by the City. Help us preserve our infrastructure, conserve water, and protect water quality.

For more information or to report nuisance water, please call the Cypress Department of Public Works at (714) 229-6752. You can also learn more about protecting water quality by visiting the City's website Stormwater page.

Additional water quality information may be obtained by visiting the County of Orange Stormwater Program at Learn how to conserve water by visiting
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City of Cypress Department of Public Works ~ 5275 Orange Avenue ~ Cypress, CA 90630 ~ 714-229-6740