Water bills can rise along with the summer temperatures. Here are some simple conservation steps:
-- A running toilet can waste 1,440 gallons of water a day. One cause can be a bad flush valve ball. To check, put a few drops of food coloring in the tank and wait. If you see the dye appear in the toilet bowl, you have a leak. The flapper valve should be replaced every 3 to 5 years (about a $10 fix).
-- A leaky faucet can be fixed by replacing the rubber washer (less than a dollar). The installation is pretty easy -- look on YouTube for how-to videos.
-- Consider installing a low-flush toilet that uses 1 to 2 gallons per flush compared to 3 to 5 gallons from a typical toilet. If you can't swing that right now, place a small water bottle filled with small rocks in the toilet's tank. (Be sure to place the bottles away from the other plumbing parts in the tank.) The bottle takes up tank capacity, limiting the amount of water it can hold.