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  1. 3/1/2013 IT’S WINTER. WHERE’S YOUR WATER GOING?
  2. In most areas of the country, winter is a great time to check for leaks in and around your home. If the mercury is dropping, so should your water use. But if your water use is high in winter, you may have a leak in your home.
     
    Easy-to-fix leaks in homes across the country add up to more than 1 trillion gallons of water wasted each year in the United States, and could be adding 10 percent to your water bill. Here is a simple checklist for monitoring household water use for leaks in wintry weather.
     
    Check, twist, replace. March 18 through 24th, 2013 is WaterSense’s Fix a Leak Week It’s the perfect time to "check, twist, and replace" any fixtures causing water waste around your home:
     
    ·       Check toilets for silent leaks by putting a few drops of food coloring in the tank and seeing if the color appears in the bowl before you flush. Don't forget to check irrigation systems and spigots, too.
     
    ·       Twist and tighten pipe connections. To save even more water without a noticeable difference in flow, twist on a WaterSense labeled faucet aerator or showerhead.
     
    ·       Replace the fixture if necessary. Look for the WaterSense label when replacing plumbing fixtures, which signifies the product has been certified to save water and perform well.
     
    ·       Monitor your bill. Because people typically use less water outdoors when temperatures drop, your winter water bill will more closely match your indoor use. Check your water bill in this winter; if a family of four’s monthly water use is more than 12,000 gallons, you could have a serious leak.
     
    Read the meter. Another way to check for leaks is to check your water meter before and after a two-hour period when no water is being used. If the number on the meter changes, it’s a sign that a leak has sprung somewhere in your house!
     
    Step outside. Once the frost has passed, go outside and check your watering devices for cracks in the hose or drips at connections. If you use an irrigation system, check it before using to make sure your system was not damaged by freezing temperatures. For a more efficient and effective watering system, you can have it inspected with an audit by a WaterSense irrigation partner. These professionals have been certified through a program focused on water efficiency.