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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 16-15

March 11, 2015

Contact:

deppressoffice@dep.nyc.gov, (718) 595-6600

Department of Environmental Protection to Help Homeowners Identify Water Leaks and Save Money

Fix a Leak Week Outreach 2014

In New York City, a Running Toilet can Cost a Homeowner up to $50 Per Day

Photos from Past Outreach Events are Available on DEP’s Flickr Page

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) today announced a series of public outreach events, to be held next week, to educate New Yorkers about the high cost of residential water leaks and simple steps homeowners can take to find the leaks and repair them. The outreach events are being held in recognition of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Fix a Leak Week which is celebrated from March 14 to the 20th to remind Americans to check their household fixtures and irrigation systems for leaks. The outreach events will be held at select Home Depot stores and DEP staff will distribute literature along with leak detector dye tablets designed to quickly identify leaky toilets. In addition, DEP has created a brief public service announcement about detecting leaky toilets that can be viewed here.

“Homeowners can save money and help conserve our water supply by simply identifying and fixing leaky plumbing,” said DEP Commissioner Emily Lloyd. “During the outreach events, DEP staff will be on hand to help demonstrate how residents can find common types of leaks and quickly and easily repair them.”

“We are happy that DEP is once again helping to promote Fix a Leak Week,” said Veronica Blette, program manager for the EPA WaterSense program. “Our theme this year is ‘Be a Leak Detective,’ and we know that New Yorkers will be great at following the clues to find and fix leaks.”

DEP staff will be available at Fix a Leak Week outreach events at Home Depot stores at the below times and locations:

  • Thursday, March 17, 3pm-7pm, 75-09 Woodhaven Boulevard, Queens, NY
  • Friday, March 18, 3pm-7pm, 545 Targee Street, Staten Island, NY
  • Friday, March 18, 3pm-7pm, 1806 Gun Hill Road, Bronx, NY
  • Friday, March 18, 2pm-8pm, 5700 Avenue U, Brooklyn, NY

Nationwide, household leaks can waste more than 1 trillion gallons of water annually, equal to the annual water use of more than 11 million homes. Leaks are not only wasteful they can also be very expensive for homeowners. DEP offers a full range of information on how to detect leaky pipes and toilets and how a simple test can help avoid costly water waste. DEP also offers a new Home Water Savings Kit that can help residents conduct a do-it-yourself water audit in less than an hour. Just follow the simple step-by-step instructions on how to find and repair costly leaks. For more tips on detecting leaks and making repairs click here.

DEP has introduced a number of customer service initiatives aimed at helping New Yorkers manage their water use and bills and respond promptly to leaks. These programs include the completion of a network of Automated Meter Reading devices that ensure bills are based on actual consumption and that allow customers to access data about their water use in near real time. In addition, a leak notification system has already saved customers more than $60 million and the leak forgiveness program has been expanded to include maintainable fixtures such as toilets and faucets to encourage homeowners to make timely repairs.

DEP manages New York City’s water supply, providing more than one billion gallons of water each day to more than nine million residents, including eight million in New York City. The water is delivered from a watershed that extends more than 125 miles from the city, comprising 19 reservoirs and three controlled lakes. Approximately 7,000 miles of water mains, tunnels and aqueducts bring water to homes and businesses throughout the five boroughs, and 7,500 miles of sewer lines and 96 pump stations take wastewater to 14 in-city treatment plants. DEP has nearly 6,000 employees, including almost 1,000 in the upstate watershed. In addition, DEP has a robust capital program, with a planned $14 billion in investments over the next 10 years that will create up to 3,000 construction-related jobs per year. This capital program is responsible for critical projects like City Water Tunnel No. 3; the Staten Island Bluebelt program, an ecologically sound and cost-effective stormwater management system; the City’s Watershed Protection Program, which protects sensitive lands upstate near the City’s reservoirs in order to maintain their high water quality; and the installation of more than 820,000 Automated Meter Reading devices, which will allow customers to track their daily water use, more easily manage their accounts and be alerted to potential leaks on their properties. For more information, visit nyc.gov/dep, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

More Information

NYC Department of Environmental Protection
Public Affairs

59-17 Junction Boulevard
19th Floor
Flushing, NY 11373

(718) 595-6600