American families spend about $840 per year on their home water bill. That figure accounts for about 80 to 100 gallons of water use per day.
While $840 for 1200 gallons of water per year might sound like a deal that you can live with, when you suddenly see your water bill doubling out of nowhere, water expenses can become a problem.
If you suspect that your sudden water bill hike could be the result of a water leak, you may be right. Water losses caused by something as minor as a dripping faucet might run up your bill by 3000 gallons of water per year, so a major pipe leak could cause absolute mayhem.
Here are a few ways that you can find out for sure if water leaks in your house are really at the root of your problems.
1. Run a Meter Test
Your home's water meter measures how much water you use over the course of a billing period. Monitoring your meter can serve as a great water leak detection indicator.
To run a meter test, shut off all of the water in your house and then note the figure that's on your meter. Wait for 10-minutes and come back to see if your meter has changed.
If your meter has gone up, you have a serious water leak. If it hasn't, wait another hour and check again. If after an hour you notice that your meter has jumped nominally, you may have a minor leak or a dripping faucet.
2. Understand What Average Water Use Constitutes
Your monthly water bill should outline how much water your family used in a given month. To determine if you might have a leak, compare your monthly water usage to the American average (12,000 gallons of water per month for a family of four).
If you fall well outside of that range for no explicable reason, you probably have a leak.
3. Check Your Toilet
Toilets are one of the biggest water hogs in your home. As a matter of fact, toilet issues are common water leaks in house culprits that could raise a utility bill by up to 30%!
To check your toilet for leaks, put some food coloring in its back bowl and wait for 15-minutes. After 15-minutes, open your toilet's front bowl to see if you notice any traces of food coloring.
If you do, you've got a leak!
Leak Confirmed? Here's What You Need to Do...
If through our tests you've determined that you do have a leak, call in a plumbing professional. Letting leaks sit stagnant in your home not only wastes water, which is detrimental to the environment, but water leaks can also quickly evaporate your wallet.
Wrapping up Our Suggestions for Water Leaks in Your House
If you suspect that you've got serious water leaks in your house, run the checks that we've suggested. With them, you'll be able to determine if you've indeed got a leak problem, and you can confidently call in a professional for assistance!
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