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If no leak is detected in the meter box, your next step is to look at the water meter register. You may have to wipe the register face off with a wet towel to see the entire meter face. Dirt usually settles on the meter from month to month due to rain, irrigation and other moisture getting into the meter box.
• Record the reading on your meter• Do not use any water in your home for at least one hour• Recheck the meter every 20 minutes for one hour. The reading should be identical to the reading taken earlier. If it is higher, you probably have a leak. It is your responsibility to have it repaired.
Dripping faucets are easily recognized. You will have a faucet that does not completely turn off, and you may hear an annoying "drip, drip, drip" or see water collecting in the bottom of your sink or bathtub.
Continuously running toilets can be a silent culprit. Check the overflow pipes in the toilet tanks to be sure water isn’t draining. Place a few drops of food coloring in the tank, don’t flush and check the bowl in about 15 minutes. If any of the coloring appears in the bowl you probably have a tank-to-toilet-bowl leak, which will require repair.
Leaking toilets are more difficult to detect. Water loss may be caused by leaking parts or an incorrect setting. You may not always hear the problem. If the flapper valve in the toilet tank is not seating well, water will flow from the tank to the bowl and eventually down the drain as the bowl fills to a certain level. This problem can be detected by putting some blue food coloring into the tank. Wait a while and see if the water in the bowl has also begun to turn blue. If so, the flapper valve is the problem. Check more than once. The flapper valve may seat properly some of the time, but not all of the time. This can make this type of water loss difficult to detect. Another way that water loss can occur in a toilet is through the overflow in the tank. The overflow is the open pipe, usually located in the middle of the tank. If the float allows water to rise too high, water will go into the overflow pipe and down the drain. The best way to detect this is to take the top off the tank and see if water is at the top of the overflow pipe. If it is, the float may need to be adjusted.
Landscape irrigation problems can also result in water loss. These problems normally occur when sprinklers are on. There may be a break in the line or a malfunction in one of the sprinkler heads. Check to see if some parts of your lawn remain wet even when the sprinklers have not been on.
Remember: These are just suggested places to look for water loss first, and is not intended to be all-inclusive.
The City is divided into three geographic cycles for meter reading purposes. Your water meter is read about the same time each month, give or take a few days depending on weekends and holidays. If something is blocking access to the water meter box, repeat visits are made to obtain a meter reading or the customer is contacted prior to billing. Meters are typically read between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Occasionally, the meter readers may need to work on a Saturday.
If you have questions regarding your water bill, contact Customer Service at 972.919.2525.