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Why Is My Water Bill So High? A Plumber in Southern California Explains

By Your Advisor 1/15/21 1:15 PM Time to read:

Nobody likes to see their water bill suddenly skyrocket. If your water bill is higher than normal (and your family’s water usage hasn’t changed), you’re probably wondering what’s causing the increase.

Your water bill could have spiked for the following reasons

  1. Plumbing fixtures inside your home are leaking
  2. Your pipes have a hidden leak
  3. You have a swimming pool or sprinkler leak
  4. Your water softener is stuck in regeneration mode

We’ll go into more detail about each of these to help you determine why your water bill is suddenly so high.

Of course, the only way to know exactly what’s causing the bill increase is to have a plumber visit your home and diagnose the problem. A plumber will have the necessary equipment and knowledge to pinpoint the cause and recommend a solution.


Need a plumber to determine what caused your water bill to skyrocket and then resolve the issue? A Burgeson’s plumber can help!

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Reason #1: Plumbing fixtures inside your home are leaking

Plumbing fixtures can develop leaks as they get older, which could explain why your water bill is so high.

The following plumbing fixtures are especially prone to leaks:

  • Toilets: Over time, the rubber flapper inside the toilet tank can wear out, causing water to leak constantly into the bowl. A leaking flapper can waste up to 200 gallons of water per day. Over the course of the month, the cost of that wasted water adds up, which could be the reason why your water bill skyrocketed.

  • Faucets: Faucets have washers and gaskets that can wear out over time. If these wear out, water can drip from the faucet. In fact, one small leak that drips at a rate of one drop per second can waste 3,000+ gallons of water per year. Even though a small leak won’t drastically increase your monthly water bill, it can lead to water damage and mold growth, so it should be repaired ASAP.

  • Shower heads: Shower heads can start leaking for various reasons, from mineral deposits to worn washers and O-rings inside the shower head. Not only is the constant drip-drip annoying, it also wastes water. A shower head that leaks 10 drops per minute wastes more than 500 gallons per year. 


A Burgeson’s plumber can fix these leaks, which will lower your water usage. According to the EPA (Environment Protection Agency), repairing simple household water leaks can save homeowners about 10 percent on their water bills.

Reason #2: Your pipes have a hidden leak

Sometimes pipes hidden from plain view develop leaks without you knowing about them—at least until you get your water bill. 

Hidden leaks could be in the water main line (the pipe that brings water into your home), or secondary lines that deliver water to individual plumbing fixtures. 

Because these pipes are located underground or behind walls, you often won’t see the leak directly. However, the following signs indicate you could have a hidden leak:

  • Water damage on ceilings or walls
  • Hot spots on your flooring inside the home
  • Mold growth (you can see it or smell it)
  • Low water pressure from your plumbing fixtures
  • Pools of water in your lawn or one area of grass that is greener than other areas

One way to confirm you have a hidden plumbing leak is to look at your water meter. Make sure no one uses any plumbing fixtures for at least 30 minutes, then go to your water meter, which is usually located outside your home near the sidewalk. If you see the dial on the water meter is spinning, it could indicate you have a hidden leak.

If you think you have a hidden leak, you’ll want to contact a plumber ASAP. A Burgeson’s plumber can easily find the exact location of the leak and recommend the needed repair. 

Reason #3: You have a swimming pool or sprinkler leak

Leaks in your swimming pool or sprinkler system can waste thousands of gallons of water and significantly raise your monthly water bill.

Signs of a swimming pool leak include:

  • Reduced water levels in the pool
  • Cracks in the tile or concrete of the pool
  • Wet spots in the yard surrounding pool

Signs that indicate you have a leak in sprinkler system include:

  • Unusually lush areas of your lawn
  • Water overflowing at the curb
  • Water overflowing from a sprinkler head
  • The ground around a sprinkler head is eroding

If you think you have a leak in your swimming pool or sprinklers, contact a plumber for assistance. They can quickly find the source of the leak and repair it to prevent additional water waste.

Reason #4: Your water softener is stuck in regeneration mode

If your home has a water softener, it may be stuck in “regeneration mode,” which can waste a significant amount of water and increase your water bill.

During regeneration mode, your water softener flushes out all of the hard minerals it catches using 25 to 50 gallons of fresh water. If you hear your water softener running longer than 2 hours at a time, it could mean your water softener is stuck in regeneration mode.

A plumbing professional can repair your water softener to ensure it only enters regeneration mode at specified times, instead of constantly regenerating itself.

Need a plumbing repair? A Burgeson’s plumber can help

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Our licensed and respectful plumbers can quickly find the problem that is causing your water bill to increase. When you hire a Burgeson’s plumber, you can count on exceptional customer service and first-class workmanship for all plumbing repairs.

Learn more about the repairs we offer by visiting our plumbing service page