Did you know that the average leaks on a household can waste more than 38,000 litres of water per year, the same amount you need for 270 loads of laundry? The common types of leaks found in homes are worn toilet flappers, dripping faucets and showerheads. By fixing these leaks homeowners can save up to 10% of the their water bills!
How to detect leaks
The best time to do this is in the wintertime. First shut off all faucets and showerheads in your house, check your water meter before and register the mark, wait for 2 hours without using any water in the house, then re-check the meter mark. If the before and after numbers don’t match, you probably have a leak.
One way to find out if your toilet is leaking is to place a few drops of food colouring in the tank. If you see the water in the toilet bowl turn to colour after 15 mins without flushing, you have a leaky toilet. Normally the cause of the leak is a worn up toilet flapper, overtime the rubber part decays or minerals build up on it. It is usually best to replace the entire flapper; this is a relative easy and inexpensive DIY project that pays for itself in no time. If you need to replace the whole toilet, look for a water-efficient toilet with dual flush.
A leaky faucet that drips at a rate of one drip per second can waste more than 11,000 litres of water per year. That is the amount of water needed to take more than 180 showers. Leaky faucets can be fixed by checking faucet washers and gaskets for wear and replacing them if necessary, but in most cases a new faucet is a much better solution.
A showerhead leaking at 10 drips per minute wastes more than 1800 litres of water per year. That is the amount of water it takes to wash 60 loads of dishes in your dishwasher! Most leaky showers can be fixed by ensuring a tight connection using plumbing tape and a wrench, but if you decide to replace the showerhead go for one with a low-flow.
If you have an irrigation system, this must be checked every spring to make sure there was no damage by frost or freezing. It is better to hire a qualified professional to do this test and make sure everything is working properly. Check your garden hose for leaks at its connection. If it leaks while the water is running, replace the nylon or rubber washer and make sure there is a tight connection to the spigot using plumber’s tape and a wrench.
Making sure that you don’t have any water leaks around the household will not only help you save some money on your hydro bill but also contribute to preserve the most precious natural resource that mother earth supplies “water”.
This Blog Post was written by our contributing writer & electrician friend Humberto Certad in exchange for a donation given to Animal Rescue Foundation.