Are you ready to chase down leaks, save money, and help the environment all at the same time? According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the average household's leaks can account for nearly 10,000 gallons of water wasted every year and ten percent of homes have leaks that waste 90 gallons or more per day. Mark your calendars for Fix a Leak Week which will take place March 18th through 24th, but remember that you can find and fix leaks inside and outside your home to save valuable water and money all year long.
Suffolk Public Utilities is a WaterSense® partner, and they are encouraging consumers to find and fix leaks to save water not only in our community, but for future generations. Citizens are urged to check, twist and replace:
- Check for leaks. Look for dripping faucets, showerheads, and fixture connections. Also check for toilets with silent leaks by putting a few drops of food coloring (or dye tablets) into the tank and seeing if it appears in the bowl before you flush, which signifies a leak. Don’t forget to check irrigation systems and spigots, too.
- Twist and tighten pipe connections. To save more water without a noticeable difference in flow, twist on a WaterSense® labeled faucet aerator.
- Replace the fixture if necessary. Look for WaterSense® labeled models, which are independently certified to use 20 percent less water and perform as well as or better than standard models.
In many cases, fixture replacement parts pay for themselves quickly and can be installed by handy do-it-yourselfers or local plumbing professionals.
In support of Fix a Leak Week, Suffolk Public Utilities will be giving away dye tablets next week for citizens to help identify leaks they may have. These free tablets will be available while they last at their City Hall office, located at 442 West Washington Street, between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. from March 18th through the 22nd.
The average household's leaks can account for nearly 10,000 gallons of water wasted every year and ten percent of homes have leaks that waste 90 gallons or more per day. Common types of leaks found in the home are worn toilet flappers, dripping faucets, and other leaking valves. These types of leaks are often easy to fix, requiring only a few tools and hardware that can pay for themselves in water savings. Fixing easily corrected household water leaks can save homeowners about 10 percent on their water bills.
To check for leaks in your home, you first need to determine whether you're wasting water and then identify the source of the leak. Here are some tips for finding leaks:
- Take a look at your water usage during a colder month, such as January or February. If a family of four exceeds 12,000 gallons per month, there are serious leaks.
- Check your water meter before and after a two-hour period when no water is being used. If the meter changes at all, you probably have a leak.
- Identify toilet leaks by placing a drop of food coloring in the toilet tank. If any color shows up in the bowl after 10 minutes, you have a leak. (Be sure to flush immediately after the experiment to avoid staining the tank.)
- Examine faucet gaskets and pipe fittings for any water on the outside of the pipe to check for surface leaks.