Water leaks: Costs and how to spot a leak

Costs of leaks

If you have a leak, your water use will increase and remain elevated until it is fixed. This will affect your water consumption charges and result in a higher utility bill.

Leaky toilets

Leaky toilets are the #1 cause of high water bills! A leaky toilet can waste upwards of 300 USG (or approximately 1 cubic metre, or 1,000 litres) of water EVERY DAY! Over a 90 day billing period, that leakage can total 90 cubic metres, and result in an extra $250 in water and wastewater charges* on your bill!

*calculated with 2020 rates of $1.365/m3 (water) and $1.382/m3 (sewer)

City Hall offers toilet leak tester kits, free of charge. See our Leaky Toilet brochure for information on how to check your toilet for leaks.

Other leaks

Anything in your home that is connected to your plumbing system has the potential to leak or run continuously and could cause a high water bill. Additional frequent causes of high water bills that we have seen include:

  • Filling a swimming pool – filling your pool at the beginning of the season and topping it up throughout the summer can add $50-100 to your water bill
  • Lawn/garden watering – this activity can add $20-50 to your water bill
  • Water softeners/water filtration systems – these systems can fail and cause excessive water to be used
  • Furnace humidifiers – solenoid valve can fail and cause water to run continuously
  • Water powered sump pump – solenoid valve can fail and cause water to run continuously
  • Outdoor leaks – not only can an outside tap drip, if you have any buried plumbing lines (i.e. to a swimming pool, a garden shed, sprinkler system etc.), the line can break underground.
  • Broken plumbing – plumbing has been known to break and leak in crawlspaces and inside the wall

For instructions on how to read your water meter, please visit our Water Meters page