If you've ever had a leaky faucet, you know it can be annoying, but with a long to-do list of other, more urgent items, it's easy to put off taking care of it. While it may not require high-level skills, very much time, or a lot of money to replace a washer on a faucet, it's often not a priority. After all, it's only a drip. No big deal.
The truth is that a slow leaking faucet, a constantly running toilet, or leaky pipes can potentially have greater costs than you might imagine.
The cost of a leaky faucet may not seem like much, but it can add up, sometimes in unexpected ways. A leaky shower head or faucet can add about $20 a month to your water bill, which may not seem like much. But if a leak happens to be in a pipe behind a wall, it can lead to drywall damages, and that can cost hundreds of dollars to repair.
A slow leak in a water heater can cause problems and may cost you several thousand dollars if you have to replace the equipment.
Leaks that aren't repaired can create problems with mold. The cost of mold remediation can range from several hundred dollars to thousands of dollars and may even lead to negative impacts on health.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), some people are sensitive to molds. They can suffer from nasal stuffiness, throat irritation, eye irritation, coughing or wheezing, even skin irritation.
Mold problems can cause people allergic to mold to have severe reactions. It can also cause problems for people who are immune-compromised and those who have chronic lung illnesses. They are susceptible and can suffer serious infections as a result of exposure to mold.
You may not realize it, but if you could add up the amount of water wasted by all of the small leaks across the country, the total would be staggering. According to calculations by the US Geological Survey, a dripping faucet can result in a gallon of water in about 4 1/2 hours. If you don't repair a constantly running toilet for a year, it can waste enough water to refill a backyard swimming pool 4 times.
Consider the amount of water lost in just one week from all of the leaks across the nation. Then ask someone living in a water-restricted, drought-prone area whether or not they think that's a big deal. Many of us take readily available clean water for granted, but that's not the case for much of the world.
Bigger Impact Than You Thought
A small leak that drips for a long time doesn't just hit your wallet. It wastes a precious resource. The true cost of water waste can be significantly more than just a few dollars added to your monthly water bill, so keep an eye out for potential leaks. The sooner you identify an issue, the sooner you can take care of it, and the smaller its impact. If you find a leak, take action immediately and call The Pink Plumber.