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How To Detect A Water Leak

Updated: Jul 13, 2023

Got a higher than normal water bill? Here are some things you can do before calling a professional plumber in Chattanooga, Tennessee.


higH water bill


As a homeowner, it’s important to understand how to save money by doing things yourself and when to call a professional. A higher-than-normal water bill can signal that something is wrong that you may not be unaware of. Running your sprinklers, filling up a pool, or simply having teenagers in your house will naturally use more water. But what if none of those apply or your habits haven’t changed? We will show you a few things you can check before calling a professional plumber.


Plumbing issues aren’t always big and scary. Here are four easy things to check to narrow the cause of your high water bill.



#1 Check Your Water Meter


This should be the very first thing you check. Make sure no one is using any water, including your clothes washer and dishwasher. If your meter is still running, you have an active leak somewhere.


water meter

Now that we’ve determined if there’s an active leak or not let’s see if we can narrow down where the leak may be.



#2 Check the Toilets


Drop some food coloring (preferably blue or green) into the tank. This is also called a dye test. If you see food coloring running into the bowl, your toilet is not working correctly. We’ll touch base on some DIY things you can do with your toilets in the next blog.


leaking toilets, dye test


#3 Hot Side or Cold Side?


Next up is your water heater. Turn the water heater off and recheck your meter. If it stops running, you know the leak is somewhere in the hot water lines or your hot water heater. If it continues running, the leak is in your cold water lines.

hot water tank, cold water line or hot water line


#4 Good Old Detective Work


If you still can’t find the leak, some detective work may help to narrow it down. Follow your water lines and look for anything damp or wet, like walls, flooring, crawl spaces, and cabinets inside and outside the house.

find a water leak



What Now?


Try to shut off water to that piece of equipment or area. Even if you can’t fix the leak yourself, at least you’ve been able to narrow the issue down, which can save you time and money just by detecting the water leak. If you’ve made it to this point, it’s time to give us a call. Our office will get a tech to you ASAP.




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