We might not think that a dripping faucet wastes that much water; they’re just little drops, right? Well, let’s get the worst news over with first. If one faucet in your home leaks at a rate of just 3 drips per minute, you’re looking at an entire liter of water wasted (and paid for!) in one day. To make matters worse, that translates to 104 gallons of water wasted per year. It is estimated that each of those gallons is made up of 15, 140 drips. Want to know more? The USGS Water Science School has a very helpful and accurate method of determining how much water your dripping faucet is wasting, so go ahead and visit them to find out.
Sink leaks are especially unfortunate, as they usually end up damaging your lovely wooden cabinets and flooring. Sometimes you don’t know that a leak is going on until it gets really bad, and you then realize that water is seeping through your cabinet doors. So, let’s make sure not to get to that point. If you do have a leak, here are some ways to pinpoint the problem. Usually your leak stems from one of three possibilities: a water-supply leak, a drain leak or a faucet leak. One way to deal with drips is by checking the compression fittings on the shut-off valves. Perhaps fittings have come loose. When it comes to drains, look for loose fittings, blockages or corrosion of the metal trap. Make sure to try tightening compression nuts, but, if that doesn’t work, give the trap and drain a good cleaning. Sometimes good old putty can fix a drain leak as well. As a last point of caution, make sure to check the back of the faucet; often water can leak down the back into your cabinets below without being visible, causing all sorts of damage and mold. Look up the kind of faucet you have for simple steps to fix it.
- TIP #1: Don’t forget to shut off the water before doing any work. To avoid scratching your furnishings, cover the jaws of the wrench with duct tape.
- TIP #2: If you store objects under the sink, avoid putting them near the water line. If you create a barrier protecting the water line, you can prevent damage to the pipes.