If you have noticed a large increase in your monthly water bill, there is a good chance that you may have a water leak somewhere in your plumbing system. Now there are of course several other potential causes for a high water bill. Things like runny toilets or leaky faucets are all common culprits as well. However, in this article, we will discuss the case where the increase in water usage is due to an outdoor leak.
There are a variety of things that could cause an outdoor leak at a home and while this is not particularly difficult to repair, it is one of the most intimidating problems for the average home-owner to solve on their own. Here are a few tips to help you diagnose and repair a problem like this in the event that you are faced with this problem.
- Trace the main waterline from the meter to your home.If you walk along the path that your main water line travels as it makes its way from your water meter at the street to the interior of your home, you will most likely encounter a portion of the ground that is much wetter and softer than the rest of the yard. Now obviously you will need to wait to do this test if you have had recent rain but in general this is a great way to locate a potential leak. Once you find the leak you will need to dig up the ground at and around the centre of the moist area.
- Locate the leak.Once you have located the leak after digging up the earth around the pipe you can then begin the repair process.
- Turn the water off at the main shutoff valve at the street.You should be able to take a pair of pliers (or your bare hands) and turn the valve at the water meter to shut off the water to your home. Once you have shut off the water you can cut the pipe around the leak and make the repair.
Construction experts can use a compression coupling to replace the damaged part of the water line in your digital service firms.
Now for the purposed of this article I have assumed that you have PVC/CPVC pipes carrying water into your home. While this is certainly not the case for everyone this will be true for the majority of homes built in the last 20 years. A 50mm compression coupling can be purchased at any local hardware store and is very easy to attach to the the water line.
Once you complete the installation of the compression coupling you will want to turn the water on and let it run for a day or so. Come back and make sure that there are no leaks after 24 hours and then re-bury the water line.If you follow these simple steps you should be able to successfully fix an outdoor plumbing leak.