Total water use | U.S. Green Building Council
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LEED BD+C: Homes | v4 - LEED v4

Total water use

Possible 12 points


To reduce demand for water through high-efficiency fixtures and efficient landscaping practices.


Reduce total indoor and outdoor water consumption by at least 10% over standard practices.

For indoor water savings, use the Water Reduction Calculator to determine the average flush or flow rate for each fixture type and the estimated daily usage. The baselines for indoor water consumption are shown in Table 1.

Table 1. Indoor water baseline consumption (per person per day)

Fixture Baseline flush or flow rate Estimated fixture usage Estimated water usage
Shower (per compartment) 2.5 gpm 9.5 lpm 6.15 minutes 15.4 gallons 58.4 liters
Lavatory, kitchen faucet 2.2 gpm 8.3 lpm 5.0 minutes 11 gallons 41.5 liters
Toilet 1.6 gpf 6 lpf 5.05 flushes 8 gallons 30.3 liters
Clothes washer 9.5 WF 9.5 WF 0.37 cycles @ 3.5 ft3 (@0.1 m3) 15.1 gallons 57.1 liters
Dishwasher 6.5 gpc 24 lpc 0.1 cycles 0.7 gallons 2.4 liters

gpm = gallons per minute
gpf = gallons per flush
WF = water factor
gpc = gallons per cycle
lpf = liters per flush
lpm = liters per minute
lpc = liters per cycle

The water pressure in single-family buildings must not exceed 60 psi (415 kPa), with no detectable water leaks. Any installed water softeners must be demand initiated.

For outdoor water savings, use the EPA WaterSense Water Budget Tool to calculate the baseline landscape water consumption and the design landscape water consumption.

Implement the following measures to further reduce landscape water consumption. Add the savings associated with each of the following strategies to the reduction from the landscape water requirement, as calculated in the Water Budget Tool:

  • Install smart scheduling technology. This strategy counts for a maximum reduction of 30% provided all landscape water use is controlled by a soil moisture sensor control system or a weather-based irrigation control system.
  • Use captured rainwater.
  • Use reclaimed water.
  • Use water treated on site or conveyed by a public agency specifically for nonpotable uses (water from naturally occurring surface water bodies, such as streams and rivers, and groundwater, such as well water, does not count).

Points are awarded according to Table 2.

Table 2. Points for reducing indoor and outdoor water use

Percentage reduction Points
10% 1
15% 2
20% 3
25% 4
30% 5
35% 6
40% 7
45% 8
50% 9
55% 10
60% 11
65% 12

Projects attempting this credit are not eligible to earn points under other Water Efficiency credits.

Projects attempting this credit are not eligible to earn points under other Water Efficiency credits.
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