This Fix a Leak Week (March 14-20, 2022), we’re encouraging you to find and fix leaks at your home or business. Many of us have experienced leaks. Leaks can result in an expensive water bill and even cause damage to your home. Leaks also waste a lot of water. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates annual household leaks waste over 1 trillion gallons of water nationwide. A trillion gallons is over 3.6 million acre-feet, and it’s almost enough water to supply all of San Diego for seven years.

We put this post together to help you find leaks when they happen and to help you fix some common leaks. Keep reading so you can save water, save money and avoid the hassle of leaks.

Image, courtesy of U.S. E.P.A

How to look for leaks

Use your water meter to check for leaks. Open your water meter and flip open the protective lid. Take a picture of the numbers and dials on your water meter before and after a two-hour period when you are not using water. If the numbers on the meter change at all, you probably have a leak. Visit our High Use page, where we dive into detail about finding and isolating many types of leaks.

Toilets leaks

Toilets are the most common type of household leak. When toilets leak, it’s usually from a worn flapper or a broken fill valve. These leaks send water to the toilet bowl and down the drain, where you will never see it. Leaking toilets can waste thousands of gallons in a day and they are easy to find. They are also easy and inexpensive to repair. Watch our video on how to find and fix toilet leaks.

Irrigation valves leaks

Irrigation valves are another common source of water leaks. Irrigation valves leak in two ways; either at the valve itself, or out of the lowest emitter in the zone. If you have an outdoor leak, you can find valve leaks by feeling the valve or listening for flowing water. If the valve is leaking, you should replace the valve. Watch our video to learn how to replace leaking irrigation valves.

Go smart and get notified of leaks

You can get a rebate on devices that can alert you of leaks and high use. Flow monitoring devices monitor your water use 24/7 and alert you of high use and leaks as they happen. Getting these alerts in real time – before they show up on your water bill – can help save water and money. The devices start at $150 and you can get a rebate of $100 on select flow monitoring devices at socalwatersmart.com.

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