Why do I Have High Water Bills and What can I do to fix It?
Perhaps you noticed that your water bill was much higher than normal and you began to wonder whether your family has been taking more showers that month. Most likely, a higher water bill is an indication that you may have a leak. Did you know that leaks can result in 10,000 gallons of wasted water every year in a single home? It is wise to be proactive about finding the source of your mysterious leak and taking the appropriate measures to fix the problem.
First of all, you will need to detect where the leak is coming from. Before you call a local plumber in Jacksonville FL, you can take several investigative steps on your own. Some of the leaks can go under the radar while others may be relatively easy to find. Here are some specific areas that you may want to consider when you are searching for leaks in your home.
Examining Leaks in Your Toilets
One of the best ways to detect a leak in a toilet is to put food dye in the back of the toilet and then wait for 30 minutes. If you come back and see that there is dye in the toilet bowl, then this is an indication of a leak. Here are some other things to consider with your toilet:
- If you notice that your toilet is leaking, it may be beneficial to replace an old toilet flapper. This part may have decayed or accumulated minerals over time.
- Listen for the sound of running water and examine the area for leaks.
- Check the flush handle to make sure that it is not stuck in one position.
- If you need to replace your toilet, you may want to opt for a higher efficiency one. Do your research and see whether a low flow toilet may suit your needs.
Your Sprinkler System, Leaky Faucets and Other Problem Areas
Another problematic area could be your sprinkler system. Be sure to check out your system each spring to make sure that no damage occurred due to winter frost or freezing. Every winter you can remember to also disconnect the hoses from the faucets and this will also prevent further damage. You may also wish to seek the advice of a local plumber in Jacksonville FL.
Make sure that your whole system is able to withstand the winter frosts. You may also want to examine your garden hose for leaks as well, especially where it connects directly to the spigot. Replace the rubber hose washer to make sure that the connection is tight enough. It is also a good idea to replace sprinkler heads that may have been damaged.
Make sure that you replace worn gaskets and washers for your faucets and shower heads. Be sure to tighten waterline valves. Use a wrench and pipe tape to fix leaky shower heads and ensure that you do not have other problems in the future. When a leaky faucet drips, you can potentially be wasting up to 3,000 gallons of water per year.
Here are some other areas that you may need to consider fixing on your own or with the help of a local plumber in Jacksonville FL:
- Check your air conditioner for leaks as well.
- Look for stains in the back of your washing machine.
- Tighten the drain valve on your water heater.
Paying Attention for the Future
One of the best ways to curtail future high water bills is to check the outside meter while all the water is turned off in the house. If your meter is still running, you may have a bigger issue with water leaks. It may be a perfect opportunity to call a local plumber in Jacksonville FL. That way you can get a professional opinion about your water situation.
If you are not able to find leaks in your home, you may want to ask yourself whether or not your water usage has increased in the past month. Did you have guests staying with you? Did you do extra loads of laundry recently? Have you actually been watering your lawn more often? These are valuable questions to address as well when aiming to lower your water bill.