As many homeowners already know, water bills are generally higher in the summertime. Most homeowners use two to four times as much water during the summer as they do during the rest of the year for various reasons, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, but the majority of usage is usually for irrigation. Even the smallest changes in daily watering habits can add up quickly, but higher water bills are never fun – even when you are expecting them.
It is important to be conscious of our watering habits, so we are not using more water than we need to, but it is also important to make sure we are not using water unintentionally through leaks in our home systems.
We encourage homeowners to check for leaks routinely every Spring to make sure there are no leaks indoors or in their outdoor irrigation system. Pipe breaks are more common during the winter when water freezes and expands inside pipes. That is why this year it is especially important to check your systems due to the unusually hard freeze we experienced in February.
Checking your home systems for leaks is very easy using the following steps:
Step 1: Turn off all running water at your home. This means no running faucets, flushing toilets, watering lawns, or washing clothes or dishes.
Step 2: Find your water meter box outside in your front yard and remove the lid. This is generally a small black box in your yard. Remove the lid and locate the small dial on your meter that looks like a snowflake.
Step 3: For at least five minutes watch the snowflake dial to make sure it does not move. Watch closely and remember not to have any water running during this time. If it does move, and you are sure that there is no water running at your home, you most likely have a leak.
Step 4: If there is not a leak indicated by the snowflake dial, next try running your irrigation system to check for broken sprinkler heads. Check every zone individually to make sure no sprinklers are spewing water erratically or are not working at all. A broken sprinkler head can flow 13-16 gallons of water per minute and, if left unrepaired, will waste about 7,800 gallons in a month of typical watering.
Check out our YouTube Channel for step-by-step instructions on checking for leaks!
What to do if you discover a leak
Once you get the leak fixed, you can provide our customer service department with a receipt for the leak repair, showing either services from a plumber or parts from a hardware store, and we can adjust your account to accommodate for a leak up to once a year. You can request a leak adjustment by calling our customer service department at 940-440-9561 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.