6 Signs of a Hidden Water Leak in Your Home

6 Signs of a Hidden Water Leak in Your Home

Water leaks can cost you a lot of money and cause significant damage, so early detection is extremely important. Unfortunately, not all leaks are obvious. Here are a few things to watch out for that could indicate that you have a hidden water leak somewhere in your home or property.

Inspect Your Meter

Checking your water meter is one of the easiest ways to determine if you have a leak. First, turn off all the water in your home. Make sure all faucets are turned off and not dripping, and double check to ensure that the washing machine and dishwasher aren’t running. Then, inspect your water meter to see if it changes. If you see it changing right away, it’s a sure sign of a fast-moving leak. If it doesn’t change right away, leave the water off, and check back in a few hours. If there is any detectable change, there’s a good chance that you are dealing with a slow leak.

Pay Attention to Your Usage

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, homeowners should check their water usage during the winter to determine if there is a leak somewhere in the home. If you have a family of four and you’re using more than 12,000 gallons of water monthly, a serious leak is likely.

Read Your Bill

Paying attention to your monthly water bill is a good way to detect potential problems. If your water usage habits haven’t changed but your bill rises, a leak could be responsible. If you notice an increase, check your bills from the last few months to see if there is a steady increase. Your water bill should stay roughly the same from month to month unless you’ve done something drastic, like fill a swimming pool. If your bills are climbing, you may way to contact a plumber for help finding a leak.

Test Your Toilet

Toilets are common causes of increased water consumption. One way to check to see if yours is running properly is by simply adding a few drops of food coloring to the tank. Wait 10 minutes, then check to see if there is any color in the bowl. If there is, a leak is allowing water from the tank to drain without flushing.

Check Outside Usage

Don’t forget that leaks can occur outside your home just as easily as they can occur inside. Check your outdoor spigots regularly. To do so, simply attach a garden hose to the spigot. If water leaks when the hose is attached, replace the rubber hose gasket, and make sure that all connections are tight. If you have an irrigation system, think about hiring a professional yearly to inspect it. Even a small leak in an irrigation system can waste up to 6,300 gallons every month.

Don’t Forget Common Sense

Don’t assume that everything is fine just because you don’t notice puddles or drips. Check the backs of your cabinets and underneath sinks regularly for moisture and signs of mold or mildew. If your home is more than 25 years old, you should be especially vigilant. Inspect you water heater, washing machine hoses and exposed pipes regularly for leaks.

Even a small leak could drive up your water bill and potentially cause thousands of dollars in damage. As a homeowner, the best way to avoid disaster is by simply taking the time to search for leaks. If you suspect a leak anywhere in your home or on your property, fixing it promptly is crucial. Many leaks are easy to fix, but others are more difficult and may be nearly impossible to find. In challenging cases, never hesitate to call in a professional plumber.

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