Water Usage

Troubleshooting High Water Usage

If you feel your water consumption or bill seems high given your historical use, please call us at 217-662-2525.  We can help you figure it out.

Some of the more common problems:

  • A leaking toilet.  A simple test - please food coloring in the tank and let sit for at least 15 minutes.  If color comes into the bowl your toilet is leaking.  Leaks occur when the toilet is out of adjustment of when parts are worn, os it is important to check periodically.  Most leaks are at the overflow pipe or plunger ball.
  • A leaking hot water heater
  • A dripping faucet.  A single dripping faucet can waste far more water in a single day than one person needs for drinking in an entire week.  Fix a dripping faucet immediately.  Check every faucet in the house for leaks.
  • A faulty water softener
  • A hose that has been left on
  • An outside hose bib that is leaking
  • An undetected broken pipe in a crawl space
  • One gallon contains roughly 3, 785 ml, so that's 15,140 drips per gallon.  Which means our 1 second dripping faucet wastes over 5 gallons of water per day and just under 2,083 gallons per year.  The numbers only get higher if your faucet drips more quickly, or if you have more than one drippy faucet in your home.

Avoiding a high bill when away from home

Broken water pipes inside your property can be catastrophic.  When leaving your home or business for an extended period of time, please consider shutting off your water supply inside the building.  This is especially important in the winter when pipes can freeze and break easily without regular water use.  Even a small break in a water pipe can result in the loss of thousands of gallons of water, interior flooding, and costly utility charges and repairs.

If you have never shut off the interior main water valve before, test it before you leave.  Turn on a faucet somewhere inside the building and shut off the main water valve.  All water flow should stop.  An old gate valve can break, so be gentle when handling the valve.  If the valve is stuck, leave it alone.  If it leaks or does not shut off all the way, have a licensed plumber replace the valve.

The City of Georgetown will turn off your water serivce at the meter upon request.  Requests for outside shut off may be made directly to City Hall at 217-662-2525.  Non-emergency outside shut off orders are typically completed within 24 hours.


Can it go down the drain?

What not to put down the drain.

Non-biodegradable products.  If it is not biodegradable, it shoud not go down the drain.

Never put the following items down the drain:

  • Cleaning products (such as products with words like toxic, corrosive, flammable, or ignitable mentioned on the label)
  • Automotive products (such as motor oil, antifreeze, brake fluids)
  • Garden supplies (such as pesticides, herbicides, fungicides)
  • Paints and solvents (such as lates and oil-based paints, thinners, strippers) Do not clean oil-based paint brushes in the sink.
  • Art and hobby supplies (such as paints, photographic chemicals, glues)
  • Medical waste, expired or unwanted medications