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  1. #1
    Registered User Contrary Housewife's Avatar
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    Default wasting water

    I found a leak.

    Our downstairs bath is an add on, and it was done cheap, not just low cost but also not great quality fixtures. I knew the toilet didn't work well, but we rarely used it so I haven't been thinking about it in years.

    Well, a few weeks ago it occurred to me that I was hearing water running a lot. I thought maybe it was the water tank topping off... and then recently I started thinking I was hearing it too often.

    I tracked it down to that toilet. The rubber gasket inside the tank on the flush contraption is warped and cracked, and I wonder now if it ever fit right. Anyway, the water must have been running a lot, in one end of the house and out the other. I emptied the tank and wedged the thingy in place so no water runs at all. I couldn't get the valve to the toilet to turn at all. Some day this summer I'll get DH to go to the hardware store and get a replacement part, but for right now we're only using the room as storage space, so it's not urgent.

    I've been wondering what has made our last two water bills so high. I think this is it. Last January we used 3 units of water and had a sewer bill of $15, this January it was 14 units and a sewer of $33! Our total bill went from $42 to $81! The one I JUST got was $113!!

    I wish I'd gotten off my butt and figured this out sooner, I'm sure it's cost us over $150 already. I can't wait to see the next bill.
    Last edited by Contrary Housewife; 05-04-2009 at 06:27 PM.
    Stop trying to organize all of your family’s crap. If organization worked for you, you’d have rocked it by now. It’s time to ditch stuff and de-crapify your world.

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  2. #2
    Moderator aka AmyBob AmyBoz's Avatar
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    I'm glad you found it! I recently found a leak under the sink in our bathroom. I'm curious to see how getting it fixed will affect our utility bill! Sorry for your troubles, but glad it is all fixed now!

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    Registered User Sassyclass's Avatar
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    Glad you found it too. That could add up quick.

    Cat

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    Well it's a good thing you found it! Now you won't be wasting anymore money on your water bills! Good luck in getting it repaired!

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    Registered User Nana2two's Avatar
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    Our town ding bats. sometimes are to lazy to read our meters around here. So they estimate.Last month our bill for WATER SEWER TRASH was $101.00 i called and complained big time. This month its down to $78.00

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    Good job getting it stopped. We have a leaky faucet in our downstairs bathroom (main floor, gets used a lot). I'm still getting around to it, there is no shut off at the sink, so it's an intimidating project for me. Last week I put a bucket under it, thinking I could use the water again, found out it is leaking between 2-4L an hour!!! I'm dumping the bucket in the toilet tank whenever I flush, and I'll use it outside when the plants are dry - but holy smokes I didn't know it was that bad. I hope to get it fixed week after next.

  8. #7
    Registered User Contrary Housewife's Avatar
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    I got the bill for April 15 -June 15. It's down some but not a huge amount. Our sewer bill is still high and I'm not sure why, they don't explain the rate or how it is calculated. There are 3 weeks of "wasteful" usage on this bill. I expect by Aug it will drop again due to current use.

    I can see our usage change on the website though. Before I fixed the leak we used 0.6 to 0.8 units of water daily. It was going up half a unit a week. Since then we have been using 0 to 0.25 units per day. The big days are when DH does laundry.
    Stop trying to organize all of your family’s crap. If organization worked for you, you’d have rocked it by now. It’s time to ditch stuff and de-crapify your world.

    If you're not using the stuff in your home, get rid of it. You're not going to start using it more by shoving it into a closet.

    Use it up, Wear it out,
    Make it do, Or do without. ~unknown

    Because we, the people, have the power to build a better future. KH

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    Registered User strezzed's Avatar
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    Wow! Glad you caught it at this point, and you know exactly what it cost you. I'll bet you're looking forward to an even smaller bill next time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by monkeywrangler71 View Post
    Good job getting it stopped. We have a leaky faucet in our downstairs bathroom (main floor, gets used a lot). I'm still getting around to it, there is no shut off at the sink, so it's an intimidating project for me. Last week I put a bucket under it, thinking I could use the water again, found out it is leaking between 2-4L an hour!!! I'm dumping the bucket in the toilet tank whenever I flush, and I'll use it outside when the plants are dry - but holy smokes I didn't know it was that bad. I hope to get it fixed week after next.
    If you can follow the pipe to your basement or the part of your bathtub where the faucet is usually in the closet in another room you may find a shut off. I'm telling you this because if you have city water and can't fix it for a couple of weeks it will raise your water bill quite a bit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Contrary Housewife View Post
    I got the bill for April 15 -June 15. It's down some but not a huge amount. Our sewer bill is still high and I'm not sure why, they don't explain the rate or how it is calculated. There are 3 weeks of "wasteful" usage on this bill. I expect by Aug it will drop again due to current use.

    I can see our usage change on e website though. Before I fixed the leak we used 0.6 to 0.8 units of water daily. It was going up half a unit a week. Since then we have been using 0 to 0.25 units per day. The big days are when DH does laundry.
    I don't know if your city does this; I live in MI and some of the cities here don't do it either. Sewer disposal in my city costs twice as much as the water. In our city we can have a 2nd meter so it registers outside water usage. That means when we water the garden, fill our pool or wash the cars we only pay for the water not the sewer. I also bought a front loader washer that uses 1/3 of the water. Very expensive; but it has paid for itself because it also used 1/2 the soap and spins clothes so dry they hardly need drying. My summer water bill went from being $100 a month to $40
    Both were well worth it!

  12. #11
    McD
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    I would call and ask how your bill is calculated. I know each town is different but the water utility I work for bills per 1000 gallons, water is 3.43 per 1000 gallons with a 2.75 availability fee and sewer is 2.75 per 1000 gallons with a 2.75 availability fee.

    Craftypam is right, the irrigation meter can be very very useful. In our city, there are startup costs. The home has to be plumbed at the expense of the owner, they have to purchase the meter (one time fee) and a one time sewer exemption fee of 15$. After that, any water ran thru the irrigation meter is only billed water, not sewer. A final bill I ran today had consumption of 39,000 on their irrigation meter so that saved them 110$ in sewer.

    Nana, does your water utility offer automatic meter readers? We have automatic meter readers that we provide at no costs to our customers. We encourage all customers to get them, actually. We will not manually read customers meters unless it's to obtain a 'final reading' to take service out of their name. When teh customer has to manually read the meter, write it down, send it in, then have one of us manually input the read, it has way to big of chance for human error! I had a lady send us a read that indicated she had used 800,000 gallons of water!!!! If your city doesn't provide AMRs, maybe you could work out a deal with your city to provide your reading to them every month to avoid the estimate.

    WOW! Sorry, I didn't mean to be so long-winded!

  13. #12
    Registered User Contrary Housewife's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by craftypam View Post
    That means when we water the garden, fill our pool or wash the cars we only pay for the water not the sewer.
    We get a 'reduced rate' on summertime water for this reason. I actually do not use that much outside, I'm not one of those people who waters the yard constantly. Come late summer the grass dies whether we water or not, so I don't. I will put drip hoses in the vegetable garden. It's not a huge cost to us.

    The city put in new automatic readers ("free") last year, so I am relatively certain the reading is accurate.

    I looked up how they calculate sewage and... well... I don't understand it that well. It's based on how much water we use, they take a percent of that at a different rate and blah blah blah....

    I do know that because of the leak for 19 days this spring we used twice as much water as we used the remaining 45 days in the billing period! During one day the leak cost us 3 to 6 times the amount of water we normally use! I had no idea that much water could run through a toilet gasket.
    Stop trying to organize all of your family’s crap. If organization worked for you, you’d have rocked it by now. It’s time to ditch stuff and de-crapify your world.

    If you're not using the stuff in your home, get rid of it. You're not going to start using it more by shoving it into a closet.

    Use it up, Wear it out,
    Make it do, Or do without. ~unknown

    Because we, the people, have the power to build a better future. KH

  14. #13
    McD
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    Quote Originally Posted by Contrary Housewife View Post

    The city put in new automatic readers ("free") last year, so I am relatively certain the reading is accurate.
    The automatic readers are very very accurate. It's just reading the numbers of the meter. If the meter is faulty, it slows down first, then stops completely.

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