The average Edmontonian uses 184 litres of water each day. But leaks or changes in your regular water use can increase your water consumption more than you may think.
Ways your water use can rise
Here are some things to check or consider if you get a water bill that's higher than normal:
1. Changes in your water use
We tend to use more water in the summer, keeping our grass green, our gardens growing and our flowers blooming. Filling pools and hot tubs, and general increased use with kids being home during summer vacation can also add to our water consumption.
Hosting guests in your home can mean more showering, toilet flushing, handwashing, cooking, dishwashing and laundry.
If you've added a water-intensive appliance or equipment to your home, you may notice an increase on your water bill. For example, water softeners use water to regularly flush out buildup in their filters, and humidifiers and air conditioners use more water at certain times of the year. To minimize these impacts, choose high-efficiency appliances.
Learn ways to conserve water inside and outside your home.
2. Water leaks
Leaky toilets, faucets, hose bibs, irrigation systems and appliances (e.g., dishwashers, washing machines, steam dryers, humidifiers and hot water tanks) left unfixed can waste a lot of water. We recommend routinely checking your home for the following kinds of leaks:
Toilets are a common source of water leaks. Sometimes, you'll hear running water or a trickle, but often, a toilet leak can be silent and easily overlooked. Here are some reasons for a leaky toilet:
Chain getting stuck under the flapper
A broken, worn or warped flapper
Flapper sticks in the open position
Float in the improper position
Water level inside tank is set too high, causing water to flow into overflow tube in tank
How much can a toilet leak cost?
A leaky toilet means more water use and more water sent down the drain, which leads to higher charges on your bill for water, wastewater treatment and drainage services.
Learn more about the services included on your EPCOR bill.
e.g., chain caught under flapper
|100 L/day or 3 m3/month
e.g., improper floater position
|12,000 L/day or 360 m3/month
e.g., water level in tank too high
|33,600 L/day or 1,008 m3/month
* Volume can vary based on type of toilet and leak.
** Estimate based on applicable 2021 water, wastewater treatment and drainage rates for Edmonton.
*** This is an actual example of a toilet running fully open for one month at a residential site in Edmonton. Larger leaks have also occurred at residential sites due to both a toilet and urinal running.
Water loss from an open toilet flapper
Toilet flapper valves stuck in the open position is a common reason for high water consumption. We simulated the problem to show you just how much water loss an open flapper can cause. Take a look:
Drips and drops
Leaky faucets, hose bibs and water-using appliances can waste a surprising amount of water. Dripping water or calcium staining on your floor, plumbing or appliances are all signs of leaks.
A quick way to confirm leaks
Take a look at your water meter. If the dial or the flow indicator (a small rotating wheel or triangle) is moving, and you aren't using any water at the time, you have a leak somewhere inside or outside your home.
A seasonal tip
In the fall, ensure your outside hose bibs are turned off. It's also a great time to check your irrigation system for leaks and get it winterized before the temperature drops.
EPCOR water calculator to tell you just how much water is being wasted. To fix leaks, we recommend visiting a local hardware store or hiring a plumber.
If you have a leaky water pipe, you may notice flooding or see water coming into your home or business. Outside, you may notice pooling or wet spots on your lawn or driveway.
Homeowners are responsible for water pipe maintenance and breaks on their property.
Learn what to do if you suspect a water leak on your property.