Hot Weather and Water Use

Hancock has the only remaining water system in the State of New Hampshire to maintain an avoidance waiver for filtration.

During the summer months the Hancock Water Works sees a substantial increase in our water usage. The long hot spell of mid-July this year was no exception. Once the thermometer gets above 85 degrees we will see our water usage jump from around 47,000 gallons a day to as much as 150,000 gallons a day. This jump is related to the number of garden hoses and sprinklers that are turned on during the hot weather.

Hancock Water works gets its water from Juggernaut Pond, a natural spring fed pond on the western side of town. Juggernaut pond has served us well for over 50 years, but times like this do tax the resources of the watershed. I was up to evaluate the condition of the pond on July 13 and I was happy to see that the level of the pond had only dropped about a foot. This is pretty good when we look at our usage over the last month. As users on the system we can do a few simple things to help juggernaut not get over used during these hot dry spells.

  • Water lawns and gardens in the early morning or the late afternoon and evening. More of the water will soak in and less will evaporate.
  • Turn sprinklers and hoses off overnight.
  • Water less frequently, but longer to help the water to soak in deeper. This will promote deep root growth that can tolerate dry spells.
  • Fix leaky faucets/toilets as soon as they are found. A leaky faucet/toilet can lose a substantial amount of water a day.
  • If grass turns brown in the heat, it is not dead, it has just gone dormant until the moisture returns.

Working with mother nature will help us minimize our operating costs and prevent water bans if this hot dry summer continues into August. For those folks not on our water system these tips can help to prevent water shortages from your personal wells. They may only serve one home, but they are still susceptible to droughts and fluctuating groundwater levels just like our system.

Kurtis J Grassett, Director of Public Works