Utility bills can be annoying. Water, sewer, trash, electricity and heating bills are an inevitable monthly cost. Add on top of those the internet and TV bill. They are a chore to pay, you have no control over their due date. They always strike as an afterthought. At least these bills are usually for consistent amounts. 

An experienced homeowner or renter will understand these bills and find no surprises. However, sometimes homeowners might be startled by their water bill. They may be annoyed to see the size of the water bill if they ignore a constantly running toilet. A steadily running toilet makes a unique hissing and trickling sound. The sound is gentle, but the effect may not be. Ignoring a constantly running toilet is like flushing money down a toilet. Water costs money so constantly running a toilet is wasting water which is wasted money.

How much water does a toilet use to flush?

Water is charged based on use. The more water a household uses the more it will cost.  

The toilet is the greatest source of water use. Additionally, nearly one third of water use in the house comes from flushing the toilet.  But how much water is that?  Older toilets use more water than newer toilets.  Here is a list:

  • Oldest Toilet: 8 Gallons
  • 1980s – 1990s: 3.5 Gallons
  • Ultra Low Flush Toilets 1.6 Gallons
  • High Efficiency Toilets: 1.3 Gallons

According to Home Water Works, an older toilet will use about 19 gallons of water per person per day.  

There are plenty of older toilets still in use today.  Taking 19 gallons per day and multiplying it by 365 gives us 6935 gallons per year per person in a household.  Consider that a constantly running toilet uses more water than this.  A high efficiency Toilet will use 2250 gallons per year.  

A constantly leaking toilet may use as much as 30 gallons per day which is 10,950 gallons per year.   That is over four times the amount of water a high efficiency toilet uses.   

How toilets work

Water fills in a reservoir in the back of the toilet called the toilet tank. When the handle is pushed down to flush the toilet, water from the tank empties into the bowl. From the bowl, the water goes down the drainpipe.

Let’s take a closer look. Inside the tank is a rod that attaches the handle on the outside to a flapper on the inside. When the toilet is flushed the fapper opens and water goes into the bowl. The flapper closes after the toilet is flushed and water fills up the toilet tank again.

What is a constantly running toilet?

As toilets age, parts in it wear out. Rubber and plastic parts are most likely to go bad. As they wear out, they become less effective and eventually fail. Sometimes, the flapper in the toilet tank doesn’t close properly which allows water to continue running into the toilet bowl as the tank fills. This causes the toilet to constantly run.   

Fix your toilet

Remember a constantly running toilet is flushing money down the drain. Let our knowledgeable service technicians help you save money so you can spend your money doing things you like. Many times toilet repair can be performed at a reasonable cost. You will want an expert plumber to come in and make repairs as they can be difficult.

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