Nothing prompts a call to a local plumber in Grand Rapids, MN quite like a sudden increase in your monthly water bill. While water and sewage costs are increasing in most of the country, a sudden spike normally suggests a plumbing problem. If you are facing this unfortunate situation, here are some likely causes for this increase.
- Water usage: While this is frequently the most obvious explanation for a higher water bill, people do not always think this through. If you just installed a hot tub or swimming pool, there will be a noticeable change in your water bill. These investments frequently result in higher water bills, so eliminate use causes first. Many people assume they have a hidden leak while completely forgetting their latest water recreation acquisition.
- Toilet tank flappers: Once you eliminate the obvious causes related to use, it is time to check your toilet, starting with the flapper. The flapper in your toilet tank allows water to flow into the bowl after a flush. If it is worn out, water will continue to flow even when there is no flush. You can recognize this issue by hearing the toilet run when it is not in use. Place a few drops of food coloring in your tank and see if it shows up in the bowl in a few minutes. If it does, you will need to replace the flapper.
- Shut-off valve: This is another toilet part that can wreak havoc on water bills when it leaks. Each toilet tank contains an overflow tube which looks like a pipe standing on end. When water enters it, the shut-valve stops water flow until the levels are back to normal. However, if water remains above the overflow tube and continues to flow, your shut-off valve needs replacement.
- Other in-home leaks: Once you eliminate your toilets as the probable culprits, the most likely cause is another leaking in-home fixture. Before you start an exhaustive search, you will need to see if this is a cause in the first place. You can check for leaks by turning off all water fixtures in your home. When you know for sure water flow is not happening, check the water meter. If the triangle in the middle (“flow finder”) is still spinning, that means there is a leak.
- Leaks under your home: If you already eliminated use, toilets and other leaking fixtures from inside your home, it is likely that the leak is under your house. In order to determine this, you will need to find the main shut-off valve. If you know where it is, turn it off and see if the water meter still moves—if it does, there is a leak under the house.
Rapids Plumbing & Heating, Inc. is available for diagnosis and repairs when your water bill stops making sense. A plumber in Grand Rapids, MN can help you determine if there are leaks, and most importantly, if they are on your property and are your responsibility. Give us a call today to help detect leaks and save you money in the long run.