It takes a lot of water to produce the food we eat, the energy we use and all the things that we buy. Use our water saving tips below to reduce your water use by fixing leaks around the house. You’ll find lots of ways to shrink your water footprint.
Calculate your water waste. Find out just how much water you waste when you let a dripping faucet drip with American Water Works Association’s DrinkTap Drip Calculator.
Find out how to detect and fix a bathroom leak. If you look up at the ceiling and see evidence of a leak from the bathroom above, this video will show you how to find the leak.
Fix that leak! A showerhead that leaks 10 drips per minute wastes more than 500 gallons per year. That’s 60 loads of dishes in your dishwasher! Grab some pipe tape and a wrench and make sure that connection is tight.
If you suspect your toilet is leaking, place a drop of food coloring in the toilet tank. If the color shows up in the bowl within 15 minutes without flushing, you have a leak (make sure to flush immediately after this experiment to avoid staining the tank). You may not need to track down a plumber because there are several things you can do yourself to fix a leaking toilet.
If your toilet is leaking, you usually just need to replace the flapper. Over time, this inexpensive rubber part decays, or minerals build up on it. It’s usually best to replace the whole rubber flapper—a relatively easy, inexpensive do-it-yourself project (see steps in the link immediately above) that pays for itself in no time.
Take the time to find out why your dishwasher is leaking. With a little time and effort it will be worth it to avoid bigger problems later on. Here are the steps to determine where the leak is coming from.
Don’t overload your washing machine or it might leak. Washing machines leak from different places and for different reasons. Here are the steps you can take to find and fix the leaks and their most likely causes.
Repair that utility sinks if it’s leaking. They’re fairly straightforward to repair. Here’s a video to show you how.
Check those water heaters – they can leak from several places. Follow these steps to first determine if there is a leak, and then where it’s coming from. Just don’t forget to turn off the electric or gas supply when you work around your water heater!
Consider evaporative coolers – they’re great in dry climates. And in-window units are easy to work on if there’s a leak.
Inspect whole-house humidifiers and evaporative coolers regularly for leaks. They can go unnoticed for a long time because the system is typically plumbed directly into the supply line. Regular maintenance helps but if you think there’s a leak, check out these steps for a humidifier or an evaporative cooler.
Consider some temporary fixes for those plumbing disasters that happen at 3 am on a Saturday morning when most plumbers are fast asleep. If the solution to your overnight disaster is something you can’t quite manage on your own, here are some temporary fixes that will get you through a night or a weekend until you can call in a professional.