Monday, March 18, 2013 - 3:55am
Madison Water Utility encourages residents to "Nip the Drip" by taking a few minutes to check for leaks.
An average household's leaks can account for more than 10,000 gallons of water wasted every year - enough to fill a backyard swimming pool! Although many leaks announce their presence with an all-too-familiar, torturous drip sound, others can go undetected for a long period of time. Finding and repairing those leaks keeps water and money from being wasted down the drain.
Take a few moments to check faucets and other water-using fixtures around the home for leaks. A leaky toilet can waste 200 gallons or more per day, but a simple dye test can be used to check for flapper leaks. Food coloring or dye is placed in the tank, and if color appears in the bowl there is a leak. Leak detector dye tablets are available at MWU offices at 119 East Olin Ave. Local hardware stores have also partnered with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to offer free dye tablets during Fix a Leak Week.
If the leaking toilet is an older model, consider replacing it to see even more water savings. A pre-1980 toilet uses nearly 4 times more water than a new WaterSense model. MWU offers $100 toilet rebates to customers who meet certain eligibility requirements; for more information visit www.madisonwater.org.
Improved leak detection is one of the major benefits of Project H2O, MWU's initiative to upgrade outdated water meters. The project is about halfway complete, but MWU has already been able to use the improved data to send courtesy letters alerting customers to possible leaks. In the future, customers will also be able to access their own water use information online.
For more information and ideas about detecting and fixing household water leaks, visit www.madisonwater.org.
- Amy Robb(608) 261-9272