Nowadays, most homeowners are looking for ways to save money. If your biggest money drain seems to be your water bill, you have come to the right place. There are lots of reasons your water bill may have spiked recently. We’ll help you plug up the leak in your wallet by taking a look at what causes a pricey water bill.
1. Most likely culprit: a leak
A leak is usually the reason for a spike in your water bill. It may not be easy for you to find, so call a licensed plumber to help locate the source of the problem. In some cases, if a plumber locates a leak and can give you written verification saying so, you can submit that information to your utilities company and they will adjust your bill. Some common places where water can sneak out: a running toilet, dripping faucet or leaky pipe.
2. Reading the meter
If your biggest money drain seems to be your water bill, you have come to the right place.
Your water meter helps measure the amount of water being used in your home. Generally, water meters are pretty reliable, but that doesn’t mean they are perfect. Water meters can sometimes be misread or faulty. If you suspect that your abnormally high bill is the result of a faulty meter, contact your utilities company right away and explain the problem. They may send an employee to check the meter to make sure it’s in good working order.
3. Common places for leaks
Leaks can happen anywhere in your house, but if you suspect a leak there are a few places you should look first. If you notice that your toilet runs and runs, there may be a leak. You can test this by purchasing special dye tablets from your local home improvement store. Place the tablet inside your toilet to see if you have a leak. Another place to look for leaks is around the sinks in your home. Check for these leaks by looking for signs of mold, dampness or deterioration under your sinks. Check around your faucet fixtures since water can escape from those, too. Another place to look for leaks is your hot water heater.
4. How to patch a leak
You can purchase kits for patching leaks at your local hardware store. However, before you take a step to patch your own leak, make sure you know what you’re doing. Some leaks can easily be patched in a small amount of time, while others require that you remove and replace the faulty pipes. Take stock of the tools you have in your home and your level of expertise. Remember, a leak can lead to other problems like water damage and mold and mildew. If you don’t feel comfortable, call in a pro.
5. Conserving water in the kitchen
From cooking, to washing your food to cleaning your counters - you probably use a lot of water in your kitchen. There are things you can do to limit the amount of water you use in the kitchen. There are lots of tips online for people looking to cut back on the water they use in this room. Another good tip you might not think about is this: turn off your icemaker. Consider all the ice cubes that are formed and never used. Since you have a fridge, chances are your drink is already cold anyway!
6. Conserving water in the bathroom
The bathroom is another place that water can get used up by the bucketful. Keep your eyes open, and you can limit the amount of water you use here. Inspect your fixtures every once in a while to look for leaks. Get underneath your sink to see if you can spot extra water there.
7. Conserving water in the yard
It can be easy to overlook opportunities to save water in your yard since you typically don’t spend as much time outside of your house as you do inside. One place to check for leaks is your hose bib – that’s the place that connects your outdoor spigots. If you have one, inspect your irrigation system. Take proper care of it so that it only distributes the water you want distributed and no extra holes or cracks develop. If your home has a pool or a fountain feature, inspect those regularly, too.
8. Other possible causes
There are other reasons why you might see the occasional spike in your water bill. Sometimes older water meters don’t work as well. If you recently had your older meter upgraded to a new one and notice a change, it could just be that the new one works better than the old one did. Another reason for a water bill spike is if there are more people spending more time at home. That means if you have houseguests, or if the kids are home for summer break, that might be reflected in your water bill. The changes you see could be seasonal. If your part of the world is experiencing a heat wave, you may be using more water to keep your lawn hydrated, fill up your swimming pool or take more cool showers.