Save Water, Save Money

Did you know that the amount of water needed to restore natural flows in the river – an estimated 14.4 million gallons per day – is about equal to the estimated amount used for lawn watering?

The Ipswich River’s water deficit is increasing, due to unsustainable management, development and landscaping practices.

Two areas where the trend is worsening are summertime lawnwatering (where 15 million gallons a day are lost to evapotranspiration), and sanitary sewers, which export both dirty wastewater and clean groundwater from the watershed.

The result, The Ipswich River is one of the most flow stressed rivers in the United States, going dry roughly every other year the past decade.

Get Started!

Do you know how much water you use or where your drinking water comes from?  The Ipswich River Watershed Association is unveiling a new website,, to help residents and businesses save water. You’ll save money and energy, and help save our rivers, too!

The Ipswich River provides drinking water to 335,000 people and thousands of businesses in 14 communities in northeastern Massachusetts. Water withdrawals frequently dry up parts of the Ipswich and Parker Rivers. provides you with the tools to get started saving water, without changing your lifestyle.


IRWA has partnered with Next Step Living, a MassSave community outreach partner, to help families reduce water usage and cut high utility bills by accessing NO COST National Grid energy assessments.  For every no cost energy assessment completed through this partnership, Next Step Living will contribute $10 to IRWA to help in IRWA’s mission work together to restore the river and ensure a sustainable water supply for the region.

Next Step Living is a residential energy efficiency company, providing home energy diagnostics and improvements to the greater New England area.  They are a  dedicated to helping our customers lower their energy bills, increase the comfort of their homes, and reduce their carbon footprint. MassSave is sponsored by the Massachusetts utilities.  If you are a National Grid ratepayer you can access the MassSave benefits.

Read more about the program highlights. Click here to get started!


Let’s explore how we can work together to leave more water in the Ipswich River for the fish, birds, and other animals that need it.

Get oriented!

  1. Look at your water bill and calculate your per person water use. Click here for directions on understanding your water bill and calculating water use. (pdf)
  2. Look at your water meter and see your water use as it happens.Your meter can tell you how much water you are using per day, week, month and year. You can monitor your meter yourself and check your figures against your water bill to verify the accuracy of your water bill.

Use Your Water Meter to Check for Leaks!

Here’s how see if plumbing leaks are wasting Ipswich River water and your money:

  • Find your water meter is inside a rectangular concrete box, flush with the ground, and is usually located near the roadway or sidewalk.
  • Turn off all the water inside and outside your house.
  • Look at your water meter. If the meter’s hand is moving, you’ve got a leak.
  • If it’s not moving, note the position of the meter and recheck it in 10 minutes. If it moved, you’ve got a slow leak.
  • Here’s a cool way to see if it’s your toilet that’s leaking: Flush the toilet, then add a teaspoon of food coloring to the tank – don’t flush it. After 15 minutes, check the bowl. If you can see any dye, your toilet’s leaking.

Get Free and Discounted Stuff!

You can save money claim rebates, discounts, and incentives for water conservation.

  1. Ipswich residents are eligible for rebates on Energy Star appliances that save energy — and water.
  2. Middleton residents can have a free water audit conducted in their home.
  3. North Reading has an interactive water bill calculator here.
  4. North Reading offers discounted rain barrels for residents.