Do It Yourself
Know where your water main is.
In an emergency such as a burst pipe, you may determine it necessary to completely turn off your home’s main water supply.
It is important to locate your water main before such a situation occurs. Mark it clearly with a tag or by painting the handle red. More importantly, share this information with family members, caretakers, house sitters and others who may need to take action.
How to check for leaks
If you suspect a leak in your toilet, place a small amount of food coloring, laundry bluing or leftover brewed coffee in the tank after it has filled. If the color shows up in the bowl without flushing overnight, then you probably have a leak. This can result in losing up to 100 gallons per day - or more than 30,000 gallons a year if not repaired.
Another way that you can check for leaks in your home is by running a test on your water meter. Turn off all faucets and appliances that use water and be sure no one uses them during the testing period. Watch the meter for 15 minutes. If the dial moves, then you know there is a leak in your plumbing system.
Unknown or ignored leaks can be the source of a tremendous amount of water waste each year. In fact, a slow drip can waste 15 to 20 gallons a day or over 6,000 gallons per year! So, take note of any apparatus that is leaking and repair it immediately.
Replace a washer
Many times leaks are the result of worn washers. This can be remedied by first shutting off the water supply to the faucet, which is usually located under the sink. If the faucet does not have its own valve, then shut off the main valve. Next, remove the handle of the faucet, take out the worn washer and replace it with a new one of the exact size. Replace the faucet handle and turn on the water supply.
Additionally, hose washers should be replaced annually.