Goldsboro asks residents to voluntarily restrict water use

Neuse River
Neuse River(WITN)
Published: Nov. 15, 2023 at 2:37 PM EST
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GOLDSBORO, N.C. (WITN) - The City of Goldsboro is asking residents to voluntarily restrict water use.

City officials said the request is being made because of current river water levels and is being done to hopefully keep from having a mandatory water restriction put in place later if the river continues to drop.

The city’s request, which included a list of suggested water time limits for things like showers, toilet flushes, and washing dishes, was sent out on Wednesday.

According to, The Neuse River headwaters, which is Goldsboro’s main source of water, the amount of water flowing into Falls Lake Reservoir upriver from Goldsboro in Raleigh has been declining for years due to development and land use conversion, droughts, and increased water demands, which in turn means less water coming downstream.

The most current U.S. drought monitor shows the area is abnormally dry, with a new drought monitor scheduled to be released tomorrow.

The City of Goldsboro has recommended the following to conserve water voluntarily:

  • Take 5-minute showers instead of baths.
  • Do not let water run while shaving, brushing teeth, and rinsing dishes.
  • Keep a bottle of chilled water in the refrigerator for drinking, so as not to run the tap to get cold water.
  • Only run the dishwasher or clothes washing machine when there is a full load. Washing dishes by hand saves about 25 gallons (don’t let tap run).
  • Inspect and repair leaky valves on faucets and toilets.
  • Install water-saving devices on toilets and showers. (i.e., place an item in the toilet tank [do not use a brick] to reduce amount of water per flush, install low-flow shower heads, etc. Look for water conservation features if buying new water-consuming appliances.)
  • Do not allow children to play with hoses or sprinklers.
  • Limit lawn and outside plant watering, then only at night between 5:00 pm and 12:00 midnight, no more than three (3) times per week, to avoid water evaporation loss. In an hour, 600 gallons of water can be wasted.
  • Position sprinklers to water the lawn, to avoid water spraying on pavement.
  • Avoid watering on windy days when the wind not only blows water off target but also causes excess evaporation.
  • Know how to turn off an automatic sprinkler system in case of rain. There are automatic rain sensors available that prevent automatic sprinklers from starting if it has just rained.
  • Use an alarm clock or a timer to remind one to shut off hose-fed sprinklers that do not have timers.
  • Consider delaying the seeding or sodding of new lawns.
  • Golf courses and athletic fields shall attempt to reduce water consumption by 50%.
  • While waiting for water to get hot, catch running water from sink and tub faucets and use it for animals to drink or to water plants.
  • Use a broom instead of water to wash down sidewalks, patios, and driveways.
  • Do not fill empty swimming pools or wading pools.
  • Do not use the toilet as a wastebasket. Put tissues and trash in a trashcan.
  • Limit toilet flushes.
  • Use disposable & biodegradable dishes where possible.
  • Be ready to catch rainfall that occurs. Place containers under drain spouts.
  • Use pistol-grip nozzles on hoses to avoid waste when watering flowers and shrubs.
  • Aerate lawns by punching holes 6 inches apart. This allows water to reach roots rather than run off surfaces.
  • Keep sprinkler heads clean to prevent uneven watering.
  • Adjust the hose to simulate a gentle rain. Sprinklers that produce a fine mist wastewater through evaporation.
  • Install automatic shut-off devices on sprinkler systems.
  • The City will delay the implementation of landscape code requirements until the next planting season after Return-to-Normal condition. However, a performance bond will be required for any landscaping required by the City’s Unified Development Ordinance.