How to Test for Leaks


To test for leaks in your plumbing system, manually turn off all indoor and outdoor water use fixtures. Check and record the numbers and the position of the sweep hand on your water meter. Wait at least 15 minutes without using water, then recheck your water meter. If the sweep hand has moved, or the numbers have advanced, water is possibly leaking somewhere in your plumbing system. Learn how to read your meter manually. Newer digital meters have a flashing plus sign instead of a triangle or a sweephand.


Customers can view water use online via our Aquahawk Water Use Portal. Our system allows you to see your water use on an hourly, daily and monthly bar graph format. Reviewing your water use will help you be sure your water use shows zero when you were not using water. If you see unexpected use you may have a leak. Go to My Account to begin.

To register for Aquahawk all you'll need is your name, phone number, email address and your 14-digit water account number. If you receive a PAPER bill you can log in on the RIGHT. For Ebilling customers, simply log-in to "My Account" on the right and click the menu option "View Usage."

Slow Leaks

Small leaks are too slow to move the sweep hand. Turn off the water at the customer valve on your meter and wait a minimum of 15 minutes. When you slowly turn the water back on, if water rushes to fill the pipes, you may have a leak.

Small leaks may be hard to see on the online meter reading system. Aquahawk displays a minimum unit of measure of one cubic foot (7.48 gallons) each hour. If a leak is smaller than one cubic foot per hour it will only show up on the graph once the meter measures one cubic foot of use. For example, if your leak is four gallons per hour, it may show usage every other hour on your graph.

Irrigation System Leaks

Leaks in your irrigation system won't always show on your meter due to their separate shut-off valves. To find leaks, walk your irrigation lines. Check for unusual wet spots, leaky or broken sprinkler heads, and use your meter to measure total irrigation use.

Got a Leak?

Customers are responsible for the maintenance of the water pipes on their side of the water meter. It is the customer's responsibility to fix or contact a plumber to fix leaks on their property. Padre Dam does not provide leak repair or leak detection services.

If you have had a leak that has caused your water bill to substantially increase and you would like to appeal the charges, please read and complete the Leak Appeal Form (PDF). After completing this form send it to Padre Dam for review along with a partial payment of at least 50% of the bill. All Leaks must be fixed before appealing a bill. If you have experienced a different situation other than a leak that has impacted your bill and you would like to submit an appeal you'll need to use the General Appeal Form (PDF).