Leaky toilets and faucets can waste hundreds of gallons of water each day, and that means paying for unnecessary water and sewer charges. For example, did you know:
• A 1/8-inch hole in a metal pipe, at 40 psi (pounds per square inch), leaks 2,500 gallons of water every 24 hours.
• A leak the size of a pinhead can waste 360,000 gallons a year, enough to fill 12,000 bathtubs to the overflow mark. For example, a leaking toilet can use 90,000 gallons of water in 30 days.
• A dripping faucet/hose bibb can lose up to 180 gallons a month, or 2,160 gallons per year.
• About 1 in every 20 pools has a leak.
• About 1 in every 318 homes or buildings has a leak.
To help you identify and repair any leaks in your home, try these tricks:
• Make sure no water is running in the house, then observe your water meter. If you see the meter’s readout increasing and/or a dial spinning, you may have a leak.
• Check toilets for silent leaks by putting a few drops of food coloring in the toilet tank after it has filled. If coloring shows up in the bowl without flushing, you probably have a leak in or around the flapper valve. (The fix is to replace the flapper mechanism, which is easy and inexpensive.)
• Inspect the water level in your toilet tank. The correct water line is about a one inch below the top of the overflow pipe. If it is higher, water is being wasted.
• Check the faucets in your bathrooms, kitchen, laundry room and outside the house. Worn washers are the biggest cause of faucet leaks.
Looking for other ways to save water? Our free water conservation audit is a great place to start.
Updated August 18, 2021