What Causes a Water Bill Increase?

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Woman sitting at a table in a kitchen looking at a bill and using a calculator. A laptop is open on the table and a man is looking over the woman's shoulder.

An unexpected water bill increase is alarming, especially when you don’t think you’ve used extra water. If your water bill is higher than you expected, check your home for leaks and other causes of excessive water use. Something as minor as a dripping faucet can waste a significant amount of water every day and cause an increase in your water bill.

What Causes High Water Bills?

Your high water bills could be due to household activities that use plenty of water, or a problem in your plumbing system. If you’ve recently topped off a swimming pool, watered the lawn, new grass or trees or kept the water running during a cold snap to prevent the pipes from freezing, a spike in your water costs may result.

If you can’t recall any reason for extra water usage in your home, check for dripping faucets, toilets that continue to run after flushing and faulty water softeners. Using air conditioners can also add to your water costs, and so can an increase in the number of people at home like kids on school vacations and guests staying over. If you still can’t explain your high water bill after ruling out everything else, check for hidden leaks. Damp or warm patches in your ceilings, walls or floor are signs that a pipe is leaking somewhere. If the leak is outside your home, you might see an unexplained puddle or wet patch of lawn or concrete.

How to Lower Your Water Bill

Reducing your household’s water consumption and installing water-saving appliances cuts down on your bills, according to Home Water Works. Some ideas include:

  • Spend only five minutes in the shower.
  • Replace shower heads with low-flow models if their flow rate is greater than 2.5 gallons/minute.
  • Compost food waste rather than running the garbage disposal.
  • Wash dishes in a sink full of water rather than under a running faucet, or install a water-efficient dishwasher.
  • Grow native plants in your yard and not a thirsty lawn.
  • Install water-efficient faucets or faucet aerators.
  • Wash full laundry loads, every time.
  • Install water-efficient toilets.

Receiving a water bill that’s higher than usual can be an unpleasant surprise, but if it alerts you to a problem with your plumbing it could save you additional costs from expensive repairs. If nothing in your household has changed that might explain the water bill increase, and you can’t find another cause, call in a plumber to check your system.

For answers to your questions, contact the Pink Plumber today.

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