Homeowners can save up to 10 percent on water bills if they fix leaks. Undetected leaks result in approximately 90 gallons of water loss in a day. These leaks could cost you money for higher water bills and thousands of dollars for water damage restoration.
Early leak detection is crucial to avoid losing money and other consequences of water damage. Here is how to detect a leak in your home.
Monitor Your Water Bill
Monthly water bills can be somewhat predictable. A study by EPA suggests that a typical family uses about 12,000 gallons every month except for summer months (watering your lawns and gardens). However, small leaks from your faucet can waste up to 10,000 gallons of water in a year.
So, if you receive an unusually high bill and your usage habits have not changed, there may be a leak in your plumbing system. It may be hard to use this method to detect leaks as some pipes are underground. It is advisable to hire a plumber to thoroughly check your system to avoid paying for wasted water.
Check Your Water Meter
Watching your water meter will give you a sure answer if you suspect any water leaks in your plumbing system. Locate your water meter and follow these simple steps to detect if there's a leak:
- Shut off all faucets and ensure the dishwasher and washing machine are not running.
- Watch the water meter and take note of the numbers. Check to see if the numbers start to change. If they do, you are dealing with a fast leak. If there's no change, check again in an hour. A change indicates a leak.
- Turn off your home's main water supply pipe and see if the leak is in or outside the house.
- Check and write down the numbers on the water meter and see how they vary in an hour. If the numbers do not change, the leak is inside. If they change, the leak stems from the water lines that run to the house.
Check for wet Spots and Puddles (mud)
Puddles and wet spots may be hard to notice sometimes, especially if there is a small leak. Observe if there are any wet spots on your walls, floor, and ceiling. Their presence could be an indication that your roof is leaking. Small leaks may make you shrug them off as spills or dry up before you notice them.
Also, check for any puddles or a patch of grass that is lusher than the rest of the yard. Water is likely to flow into your yard and cause puddles if pipes in your yard are leaking. An underground leak is critical and will need immediate repair.
Note that the leak is not always where you spot the water. The water moves as it seeps out of the pipes and rises through the soil. Hire a plumber to help you detect the source of the leak. For more information on leak detection, contact a professional near you.