According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's WaterSense program, in the span of two television commercial breaks, you could save more than 10,000 gallons of water, which is equivalent to the water used to wash 10 months' worth of laundry.
Finding leaks is easy. To get started, put a few drops of food coloring in the tank to check for silent toilet leaks. Wait 10 minutes before flushing; if color shows up in the bowl, you probably need a new toilet flapper-an easy repair.
While you wait, check your other plumbing fixtures for drips-they may seem small, but all those drops really add up. Next, check your winter water bills. Most families of four use 12,000 gallons of water per month or less in winter. If your bill is showing something higher, you could have a serious leak-inside or out.
Finally, step outside and inspect your garden hoses. Are they damaged or cracked from winter's frost? If you have an inground irrigation system, an irrigation professional certified through a WaterSense labeled program can check for leaks and broken sprinkler heads.
See www.epa.gov/watersense for more information about Fix a Leak Week and a list of certified irrigation partners in your community