How Much Do Water Leaks Really Cost Us?

City of Calgary

As a part of your home maintenance, don’t forget to check your taps, hot water heater, water softener, and especially toilets for leaks. Visit for information on finding and repairing leaks.

Toilets are the most common cause of leaks in the home. Most toilet leaks are silent and go unnoticed for long periods of time.

Checking for toilet leaks regularly can save both water and money. A chain caught under a toilet flapper can waste 3,000 litres a month.* A leak this size could increase your monthly bill by $10 until its fixed.** A broken or worn-out flapper could waste 450,000 litres per month. A leak this size could add almost $1,200 to your bill.***

Take the Leaky Toilet Test to find out if your toilet is leaking.

  • Remove the tank cover.
  • Put several drops of food colouring (or another coloured liquid you have in your home like coffee or tea) into the toilet tank.
  • Wait 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Look in the bowl. If the water changes colour, you’ve got a leak.

The sooner you make a repair, the better. Go to for detailed instructions on how to repair leaks.

*Volume of water can vary based on type of fixture and water pressure. Assumes a 30-day billing period.

** Based on 2022 water rate ($1.39/m3) and wastewater rate ($1.55/m3) for Calgary. Not including service charges.

*** Based on modeling of possible flow rate of one-inch diameter residential service line.