Department of Water Resources Home

WUE -- Commercial, Industrial, and Institutional Program

Division of Statewide Integrated Water Management

Water Use Efficiency
901 P Street Sacramento, CA 95814-3515

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 942836
Sacramento, CA 94236-0001

Related Links

CII Links

Commercial Technologies


  • Dishwashers - According to a 2002 study of commercial dishwashers by Koeller and Mitchell, dishwashing in a restaurant typically consumes two-thirds of its total water consumption. Other significant data from the survey includes the following savings potential. This potential is greatest when replacing lower efficiency dishwashers.
    • Yearly water savings: up to 1.5 acre-feet per machine
    • Yearly energy savings: up to 66,000 kWh per machine
  • Ice Machines - Water-cooled ice machine typically use 10 times as much water as air-cooled ice machines.
  • Pre-rinse nozzles
  • Garbage disposers
  • Water and Energy Efficient Behavior:
    • Fill dishwasher racks to maximum capacity
    • Hand scrape left over food to trash rather than rinsing
    • Reuse water when possible, if health regulations permit

Commercial Laundries

  • The total energy and water used by typical commercial washers is several times larger than for residential washers. (Pope, 2002 AWWA proceedings)
  • Continuous catch and water reclamation systems can reduce water consumption by 70%.
  • Water reducing behavior:
    • Operate washing machine only with full load or reduce water volume for partial loads.

Office Buildings

  • Indoor Plumbing:
    • Ultra-Low Flow Toilets (with dual plumbing where possible)
    • Faucet Flow Restrictors
  • Efficient Landscape Design
    • Use of recycled water for irrigation, where supplies are available
    • Minimize turf grass
    • Low water consuming plant species
    • Weather based irrigation scheduling


  • Hotels represent a combination of office building, restaurant and commercial laundries.