You might be surprised to look at your water bill one day to find that it looks higher than average. If this happens, don’t panic – water bill costs can rise for many reasons, including legitimate reasons such as leaving the sprinkler on overnight. Operating a pool in the summer months or taking longer showers than usual can increase your water bill, too. But if there doesn’t seem to be a clear explanation for the increased water rates, it’s time for some investigating.
A Leaky Faucet
Leaking faucets are one of the most common causes of a higher water bill. You can do a simple test to see how much water you’re losing by counting the drips that fall from the faucet each minute. A faucet that drips ten times per minute loses nearly two gallons of water each day! A faucet that drips, even more, can quickly cause your water bill to skyrocket.
Leaking pipes can be another possible cause of your rising water bill. And the amount that leaking pipes cost you can be surprising. A leak that’s only as large as a pencil tip can cost over 950 gallons of water each month! A small leak can quickly become more substantial, which means you’ll want to contact a professional plumber for repairs at the first sign of trouble. A plumber can also check for leaks in obscure places such as the yard, crawl space, or walls to determine the cause of a mysteriously rising water bill.
A running toilet may also contribute to rising water bills. A toilet that runs continuously can cost you hundreds, if not thousands, in repairs every month. A toilet that continues to leak over multiple months can quickly add up and leave you with excessive water bill costs.
Leaking Irrigation System
Sometimes, homeowners don’t even realize that their irrigation systems are leaking until they receive a water bill that’s higher than usual. If you can’t pinpoint the cause of a high water bill from fixtures and appliances inside your home, check the irrigation system for signs of a problem.
Sometimes, appliances and fixtures that are older use more water than newer, more energy-efficient ones. The water heater is one appliance that can increase water consumption if it’s outdated. If that’s the case, you can ask a plumber about switching to an energy-efficient tankless water heater instead.
Broken Water Meter
If you still can’t figure out the cause of a high water bill, you may have a broken water meter. In that case, your utility company will replace the meter and reimburse you for the high fees.