When it comes to ensuring your plumbing is working right, you need to be vigilant about leaks. Read on, this time on Economy Plumbing Service, we’re running down how to identify if you have a leak!
There are a few telltale signs that one is lurking somewhere in your pipes. Water bill running high? Toilet running all night? Noticing a foul odor under your sink? You’re likely dealing with a leak. Let’s talk more about that!
Check Your Meter
First, the easiest way to ID whether or not you have a leak is to rely on your meter!
To do this, first shut off all the water in your home. Make sure none of your faucets open, no washing machines, nothing at all that needs your water. With everything turned off, and the water shut off look at the meter and mark where it is sitting. After several hours, take another look and check the meter. Did it change? If so that means water is going somewhere it shouldn’t.
Doing this process overnight when no one needs the water in your home is a good time to run this check.
Now, this won’t help you find where the leak is, as the leak could be anywhere in the system after the meter, but now you know there’s a problem! And that’s a start!
Test for a Leaky Toilet
Toilets make up about a third of all household’s water use. If there’s a leak there, it’s going to have a huge impact on your water use. Luckily, testing for a leak in your toilet can be incredibly easy. First get some food coloring, add a couple drops to the tank and wait, wait, wait some more. If after about 10 to 15 minutes your toilet bowl is showing that color, you know you have a leak letting water flow from the tank into the bowl. That leak means the tank is constantly draining and refilling and wasting water!
Monitor Your Bills
Similarly to looking at your meter, you can take a look at some of your utility bills to get a good idea of what’s happening. Get the bills for the past few months and take a look at the usage amount and the total bill. Have your water habits been fairly consistent? Then the bill itself should be the same. If your water habits haven’t changed and your bill is rising, well that might mean a leak.
To make it easier on yourself, gather up as many monthly bills as you can to compare. And remember that some of your plumbing runs underground and you may never notice those leaks first hand, even though you’re still paying for them!
Check Your Outdoor Usage
At this point, you’ve probably noticed that we have mentioned a couple of times that not all leaks are going to be outside or above ground. A large portion of your plumbing system is outside your home and leaks can happen there too!
Check Your Spigots
Grab a garden hose and connect it to your spigot. If water is leaking through the connection then you probably have some broken down gaskets that need to be replaced.
Look at Your Yard
Are there certain areas where the grass or weeds are growing like crazy? Your irrigation system might have a leak in it.
And last but not least, use your common sense! Things like mold, odors, and wetness of course, all are signs of a leak. Look at the back of your cabinets, under your sinks. Finding leaks when they’re small and easily repaired will save you thousands down the road!
Speaking of, if you have found a leak and it is time to repair it, well you come back next time and we’ll lay out the simple fixes for leaky sinks, toilets, and drains.