Fix a Leak

Tips to Fix a Leak 

Below are a few quick tips for consumers throughout the county to check their homes and irrigation systems for easily correctable leaks.

Quick Leak Facts

Leaks may account for an average of 10,000 gallons of lost water at home every year.

In the US, more than 1 trillion gallons of water may be lost to avoidable leaks - that's as much as Miami, Los Angeles, and Chicago use each year combined.

As much as 10% of homes may be wasting at least 90 gallons of water per day due to leaks.

Most of time repairing leaks can be done without a major investment.

Detecting Leaks

If a family of four has winter water usage of more than 12,000 gallons, there is a good possibility that they have a major water leak.

Find out if you have a leak in your toilet by adding leak detection dye tablets (available at ONWASA's Operations Center during Fix a Leak Week). Place the tablets in your tank, and if the color comes through to the bowl within 15 minutes, you have a leak that may be costing hundreds of gallons per month.

Showerheads and Faucets

A drip per second from a leaky faucet can add up to more than 3,000 gallons of water each year - enough to flush a toilet for 6 months!

Check faucet washers and gaskets for wear and replace them if necessary.

A drip every 10 seconds from a showerhead may be more than 500 gallons of water per year down the drain - enough for 60 loads in the dishwasher.

Leaky showerheads can often be corrected by pipe tape and a wrench to make sure there is a tight connection.


A running toilet could be losing 200 gallons of water per day.

Many times a toilet leaks due to an old flapper. This is an inexpensive rubber part that may decay or have mineral buildup.

When replacing a toilet, consider using a WaterSense labled toilet, they may save you as much as 16,000 gallons per year - which could be thousands of dollars in savings over the life of the toilet.


Check any irrigation systems in the spring before use to make sure there is no damage from freezing weather.

A 1/32nd of an inch leak in an irrigation system may lose as much as 6,300 gallons of water per month.

Be sure to check the water hose, too. If there is a leak at the connection to the spigot, replace the rubber or nylon hose washer and make sure there is a tight connection by using pipe tape and a wrench.

Quick Links

 Detecting Leaks