Catch water leaks early!


Have you ever found a water leak in your home? Most leaks are silent, which makes them hard to detect, but they can lead to a high water and wastewater bill and costly damage to your home if you don’t stop them in time. That’s why the City of Vaughan is sharing tips you can use to catch leaks early on – or hopefully prevent them from happening altogether!


To test for leaks, record the number on your water meter before bed, then avoid running sprinklers, washing machines, dishwashers or toilets overnight. In the morning, check the number on your water meter. If the number has changed, it’s because water has passed through the meter, which means you may have a leak somewhere inside or outside your home.


The most common cause of high water and wastewater bills is toilet leaks. To check for a leaky toilet, follow these steps:

  1. Remove the tank lid from the back of the toilet.
  2. Put about five drops of food colouring in the toilet tank. Use Worcestershire sauce or another very dark liquid if you do not have food colouring.
  3. Close the toilet lid and wait 30 minutes. If coloured water seeps into the toilet bowl, you may have a leak. This can be a sign that the flapper valve may need to be replaced or realigned.
  4. If the bowl is clear and all the coloured water remains in the tank, you do not have a leak.
  5. Repeat these steps with all the toilets in your home.


If you think you have a water leak, call a licensed plumber to investigate and repair it as soon as possible. For more information on checking for leaks, visit the City’s leak prevention webpage or read the water wise brochure (PDF).


Accidental Water Leak Adjustment Policy

Did you know the City has an Accidental Water Leak Adjustment Policy (PDF)? It provides one-time financial support for eligible residents who are Alectra Utilities account holders or not-for-profit organizations that have experienced an unintentional water leak due to failed plumbing, such as a leaky toilet or faucet. For details on the policy, including eligibility and how to apply, visit the City’s Accidental Water Leak Adjustment webpage.


To learn more about water services in Vaughan, visit


For updates and news as they happen, subscribe to Vaughan News and follow the official corporate channels on TwitterFacebookInstagram and LinkedIn.