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Old 09-28-2014, 04:01 PM  
mperrill
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Default High Water Consumption--help me solve a mystery?

Here is my problem. My water bill is double that of my neighbors. Since we have similar sized houses, families, and similar lifestyles, I think I have a leak or some other plumbing problem. My neighbors pay $40 - $45 per month. I usually pay around $90. This has been going on for a few years (but I did not know it was a problem until I asked what their bills were).

I shut off the main water supply to the house for a few hours and noted no consumption on the meter. Therefore, I do not think the line from the meter to the house is leaking. I believe the problem is inside the house.

I have tested my toilets by putting dye in the upper tank. No leaks. I was informed I could have high consumption if the float in the toilet tank was set to rise too high, letting water fall into the overflow drain. I checked. One toilet was set to let the water rise pretty high but it was below that overflow drain. I adjusted it to have the float cut the water off even lower anyway.

I have replaced the flapper and the float in both toilets.

I do not have a pool or an irrigation system. Even though something is using a lot of water, I don't hear water going thru the pipes when it shouldn't be. In other words, if water is being used, the washer is in use, the dishwasher is in use or someone flushed a toilet.

My house is 15 years old. We have all the same appliances and fixtures as when it was first built. I have a dishwasher, clothes washer, electric water heater. The fridge has an ice maker.

That's my story. Any ideas? What would you do? I am thinking of shutting down one room at a time that has some water consuming appliance to try and isolate the issue. That will take time and be a pain. Any better solutions?

Thanks for reading.
Mark



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Old 09-28-2014, 05:59 PM  
kok328
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Maybe your meter is bad. Local municipality can swap it out - no charge. How does the gallons compare to your neighbors?



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Old 09-28-2014, 06:03 PM  
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Why are you so certain that you have a leak somewhere? Have you seen the neighbor's bill personally? If so, how does this compare to how many persons are occupying your home compared to them? Do you shower more? Do you do more laundry than them? Is your landscaping more lush than theirs? I would first try to match apples to apples, then, contact the water department for an in home audit. Most municipalities appreciate water conserving customers, and are usually glad to come out to assist you.

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Old 09-28-2014, 06:04 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kok328 View Post
Maybe your meter is bad. Local municipality can swap it out - no charge. How does the gallons compare to your neighbors?
Or...maybe the neighbor's meter is bad?
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Old 09-28-2014, 06:29 PM  
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Thanks for your replies so far.

Of course my
neighbors usage and mine will be different. Someone will shower more or less. But not enough to account for a double bill. The neighbors on either side have similar family sizes. I have 4. One has 6, the other 3. They both pay half of my bill.

No, I did not ask to see their water bills with my own eyes. That would have been incredibly rude. They have no reason to lie.

I wonder if the meter could be bad. That's a possibility. Our water authority is not very user friendly but it might be worth a shot.

Any other ideas?

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Old 09-28-2014, 06:39 PM  
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turn off everything in the house

go out to your meter. look at the numbers
next to them is a little wheel, is it turning? if its turning water is being used.


http://www.buywatermeter.com/photo/pl153543-sdn_single_jet_dry_type_vane_wheel_water_meter_pla stic.jpg

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Old 09-28-2014, 07:01 PM  
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could it be that the neighbors have low flow everything and you may not?
Do you run a water softener?

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Old 09-28-2014, 07:04 PM  
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Odorf has the best advice. Check the meter to see if it is registering any usage when nothing is supposed to be being used.
Some meter have a little red triangle instead of the wheel.

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Old 09-28-2014, 07:16 PM  
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No, I don't have a water softener. It's possible the neighbors both have low flow everything. I think the answer is no though.

The two best ideas I have seen so far is to actually see the consumption in gallons for my neighbors and compare it to my consumption. And the possibility that my meter is bad.

I will turn off everything in the house and check the meter sometime this coming week but, like I wrote earlier, I don't hear any water moving thru the pipes when there is not a good reason for it.

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Old 09-28-2014, 07:57 PM  
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Thanks again to everyone who contributed something so far. I'm still open to ideas though. I don't want anyone to think the last word has been spoken.



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