Residents and businesses in the Dartmouth area are being asked to conserve water until further notice.

Halifax Water says the prolonged hot, dry weather has resulted in reduced water levels in Lake Major.

"It's been a dry six weeks to two months," says James Campbell of Halifax Water. "We'd like folks to do some basic conservation measures. We're asking them to voluntarily reduce their water use."

The lake serves roughly 103,000 residents and businesses in the communities of Dartmouth, Cole Harbour, Eastern Passage, North Preston, and Westphal.

The order isn’t mandatory, but Halifax Water says voluntarily conserving water now will reduce the need for mandatory restrictions in the near future.

"The most precious resource we have is water. (Be) mindful of that," said Cole Harbour resident Michael Pierce. "We've been trying to watch our water. We try to not keep the water running."

Mandatory restrictions were put in place in 2016 and 2018 due to low water levels in Lake Major.

Halifax Water says a new dam has been operating at the lake for a few weeks, which allows for better control of flows and increased ability to impound water.

In order to conserve water, Halifax Water suggests turning off the tap when brushing your teeth, flushing the toilet only when necessary, taking shorter showers, washing clothes in warm or cold water, reducing outside water usage, and checking faucets and pipes for leaks.

Halifax Water is hoping to avoid a mandatory restriction of lake major's supply - as was the case late last summer.

With files from CTV Atlantic's Paul Hollingsworth.