A dripping faucet or a toilet that runs can waste significant amounts of water, and in less time that you may think.

Consider: A faucet that drips just once every second wastes 168 gallons of water a month. And a toilet leak can waste up to 200 gallons per day!

Fixing leaks saves you money, and helps conserve our natural water resource. Following is information that can help you identify and fix leaks:

How to check for a leak

Choose a time when everyone in your house will be gone for a significant period of time. Several days is ideal, but a good eight to 10 hour stretch is good, too. Make sure automatic sprinklers and ice makers are turned off. Then, just before you leave, take a reading off your water meter and write that number down. When you return, before anyone has a chance to run any water, check the meter again. If it has moved, you may have a water leak. Here are the likely culprits:

Faucet leaks

A sheet of paper left under a faucet overnight will indicate a leak there. Remember to check tub and shower faucets, as well as sinks. Also, check pipes under the sink for signs of dampness, and check your outdoor faucets as well. If you’re handy, you can probably fix the leak yourself. Just download the following brochure for more information. Otherwise, a qualified plumber can help you.
Sink repair insert web (pdf)
How to repair your tub and shower faucet (pdf)

Toilet leaks

Add a dozen drops of food coloring to the tank. If the color shows up in the bowl, or if it has disappeared from the tank after a few hours, you have a leak. Download the following brochure if you’d like to try to troubleshoot the problem yourself, or call a qualified plumber.
How to fix a toilet  (pdf)

Irrigation leaks

First, check all sprinkler heads to make sure they are not cracked, broken or obviously leaking. Then, check for areas where water is pooling or that stays wet and soggy after the rest of the area has dried. If pipes run under those areas, you may have a leak.