Did you know realize that those small and annoying leaky faucets, toilets, showerheads and more waste lots of water, but also money? Plus, we rely on many appliances that consume water. For example, washing machines and dishwashers all leverage your plumbing system. And, as summer approaches, we start watering our lawns or filling swimming pools. If any leaks exist in your water supply, then you’ll start seeing the an increase in your water bills. As a result, we’ll help homeowners spot signs of a leak and share how electronic leak detection works!
How much do water leaks cost?
First and foremost, most of us assume we’ll easily spot a leaking faucet or sink. For some leaks, this does happen. But, for many homeowners, leaks cannot be easily spotted. And leaks add up! For example, a leaking toilet can leak between ¼ and 1 gallon per minute. This results in a roughly 50% increase in your quarterly water usage, which is 8 times more than an average residential home. Additionally, this increase in water usage translates into anywhere between $36 and $1,000 in additional expenses. The excess costs depend on the actual amount of water consumption, along with existing rates.
- Dripping Leak Costs
Generally, a drip consumes about 1 gallon of water every 15 minutes. Over the quarterly billing cycle, drips waste roughly 8,640 gallon (57% more than average consumption) and costs between $36 to $78 in additional costs.
- Trickling Leak Costs
Generally, a trickle consumes about 1 gallon of water every 4 minutes. Over the quarterly billing cycle, trickling water wastes roughly 32,400 gallon (200% more than average consumption) and costs between $137 to $294 in additional costs.
- Streaming Leak Costs
Generally, a stream consumes about 1 gallon of water every minute. Over the quarterly billing cycle, streaming leaks waste roughly 129,600 gallon (800% more than average consumption) and costs between $548 to $1,176 in additional costs.
Finally, many towns incorporate water consumption in base sewer charges. So, if your home relies on the town sewage system, wasted water potentially impacts your sewage bill as well!
What are common signs of a water leak?
Fortunately, leaks have some tell-tale signs. First, faucets still drip and toilets still run, which signal obvious signs of leaking. Second, look at your water bills. For example, if your water usage remained constant and your bill increased, then your home likely contains a leak. If so, contact a plumber for an inspection because you don’t want the leak to fester and a drip turn into a stream!
Additionally, if you suspect a leak, but don’t want to wait for the next water bill, then check your water meter. To start, make sure nobody in your home needs the water for a while. Next, turn off all the water fixtures in your home and note the meter reading. Wait for about an hour and check the reading. If the reading changed, then you have a leak. Also, some meters contain a red low flow indicator, so if you turn off the water and the dial rotates, then you have a leak.
Finally, your home provides some other warning signs, such as:
- Running toilets and dripping faucets.
- Spongy, soft, or discolored walls.
- Musty odors from floors, walls near drains, or sewers.
- Chronic sewer backup problems.
- Cracked or unusually damp foundation or slab.
- Warm areas on concrete floors, mildew, or excessive moisture under carpets.
- Particularly wet or moist areas in the yard that are unusually wet or moist (frequently these areas look very healthy or contain unusual plant or grass growth).
If you noticing one or more of the above, then there’s a good chance your home contains a water leak somewhere. If so, address the leak immediately.
How does electronic leak detection work?
Interestingly, electronic leak detection works based on the principles of sound. Electronic leak detection leverages equipment with a transducer sensitive to sounds. A trained plumber uses the detector during an inspection looking for the leaks to register a sound.
“A plumber is an expert in installing and attending to leaks reported by an electronic machine designed especially to pick up on the acoustics made by sounds outside of pipes or leaks. An electronic leak detection machine finds leaks in water systems, toilets, drains, industrial pipes, steam pipes, oil pipes and other pipes transporting liquids. The principle of sound is what is used to detect leaks in pipes using an electronic leak detector.”
At SolvIt, we employ sophisticated electronic leak detectors that spot water leaks anywhere, including insider your walls and underground. Our services also include water and sewer line location. Once we assess the damage, we recommend and implement the right repair or replacement solution. Interested in learning more about electronic leak detection or how SolvIt can help reduce your water consumption? Call us today!