What's Causing Your High Water Bills?

Utility prices frequently fluctuate, but a sudden increase in one of your bills is often a sign of an underlying problem with your home. For instance, a sudden spike in electricity usage can often indicate issues with your HVAC system or appliances. On the other hand, a noticeable jump in your monthly water usage probably means that something is going on with your plumbing.

Unfortunately, hidden plumbing issues can cause more damage than a few extra dollars on your utility bills. An unaddressed issue may result in severe water damage, turning a minor problem into a massive repair bill. If you've noticed your water bills slowly climbing every month, here are a few possible reasons for the problem.

1. Undetected Water Leaks

Undetected water leaks are among the most likely causes of unaccountably high water usage. Depending on your home's design and plumbing layout, there are many potential areas where water leaks may go unnoticed. Common locations include relatively hidden areas such as basements, lawn irrigation systems, and under slabs.

However, slow leaks can sometimes go unnoticed in surprising areas. For example, dishwasher leaks can be hard to detect if the water drips toward a wall. These leaks can cause substantial damage before you even notice that anything is wrong. If you can't locate a suspected leak, a plumber can usually help you track down the problem.

2. Pressure Regulator Issues

Many homes include a pressure regulator to reduce the pressure from the municipal water lines. Municipal pressure can often be very high to facilitate water distribution, and that high pressure can cause damage to plumbing and appliances. Generally, water pressure in a residential setting should be at 80 psi or lower.

A broken pressure regulator can potentially lead to increased water pressure. More pressure can lead to extra water usage from faucets and appliances, ultimately increasing the water you use for your daily activities. Hiring a plumber to check and replace a faulty pressure regulator will help get your water bills back under control while protecting your plumbing from the dangers of excessive pressure.

3. Dripping Faucets

Sometimes the problem is hiding in plain sight. Do you have a dripping faucet that you've been ignoring? A few drops of water might not seem like an issue, but those drops can add up faster than expected. A faucet that drips just ten times per minute can waste over 40 gallons of water per month. Multiple dripping faucets or faster drips can really accumulate at the end of the month.

Fortunately, fixing a dripping faucet is usually a relatively straightforward job. A quick and likely inexpensive call to a plumber will resolve these issues in no time, eliminating that annoying drip sound and helping you stop wasting gallons of water every month. 

For more info, contact a local company like Michigan  Plumbing.

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