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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
How often does the Village bill for Water, Sewer and Refuse service?
The Village of Bensenville bills residential accounts every month for the prior month’s usage. Bills are generally generated in the beginning of the month with the due date 20 days from the print and mail date.

My water usage has recently increased, what are the reasons for that?
There are a number of reasons why your water bill may have increased. One would be that you used more water than in the past. Are there more people living in your home? Have you accidentally left a faucet on? Have you been washing your house siding, vehicle or sprayed your patio furniture or walkways? Have you filled a swimming pool? Have you been watering your lawn or garden? Another possibility is that you may have a leak in your pipes or fixtures (primarily toilets). While your interior pipes and fixtures are your responsibility to maintain the Village would be happy to determine weather you do or do not in fact have a leak. Please call 630-594-1011 to schedule an appointment if you are unable to determine weather or not you have a leak.

What can I do to lower my water bill?
One option is to conserve water within your home. This can be as simple as not running the water when washing the dishes or brushing your teeth. Another option would be to water your plants/lawn less often. You can often save water by checking for leaks regularly and dealing with them promptly. One simple leak checking option is to use die strips, tablets or food dies in your toilet tank (do not flush) and checking (after 10-30 minutes) if the color migrates into your bowl on its own.
  
How do I know if I have a leak?
If you get a bill that seems unusually high, the first thing to check is the water meter. On the top of your water meter is a register that contains the water reading. Make sure that all faucets and appliances that use water such as washing machines and dishwashers are off. Watch the meter register for at least three minutes. If the dials are moving at all, there is a leak somewhere. Often, this means that the toilet is not shutting off.

Common Water Problems
The most common home plumbing problem would either be the dripping faucet or the running toilet. Less common are the hot water tank or a furnace humidifier. Of all these the running toilet is the most serious. It can waste hundreds of gallons of water a day.

Putting an end to the problem is easy - often just a 30-second task.

All the action is in the flush tank. When you flip the flush lever, the tank ball is lifted, opening the drain beneath it in the bottom of the tank. The water stored in the tank runs out the drain and flushes the bowl. When the tank is nearly empty, the tank ball drops back down, closing off the drain to stop the flush. Now the tank begins to fill with water. As the level rises, it lifts the float ball. This ball controls a valve. When the water level in the tank reaches the proper point, the rising float ball shuts off the valve and the tank stops filling.

Here are the most common problems and how to fix them:

Water runs continuously and the tank will not fill.
The problem is that the tank ball is not closing off the drain at the end of the flush. Remove the cover to the tank and take a look. Is the tank ball hanging above its seat? If so, see what is holding it up. The lift rod may be binding in its guide or in it may be hanging up where it hooks onto the trip lever.

If the tank ball is not hanging up, maybe it is not centered on its seat. If so, twist the rod guide on the overflow tube so that the tank ball rests properly. If the tank ball is seated properly yet the tank still won’t fill, check the ball for wear or build-up of rust or debris. Do the same for the seat. Remove rust with fine sandpaper and replace worn or damaged parts. To remove debris, rub with a clean cloth around the tank ball and seat.

Some toilets may have a flapper instead of a tank ball, and a chain instead of a lift rod. If so, the problem may be a misaligned or worn flapper or a kinked chain.
  
Tank fills, but water keeps running.
A water logged float ball often causes this. Lift up on the float arm. If the water stops flowing, screw the float ball off its arm and see if it is water logged. Water inside? Replace it with a foam ball. This type will not go bad.

If lifting the float arm doesn’t stop the flow of water, jiggle the arm up and down a few times. This may dislodge any corrosion that’s making the valve stick open. If jiggling the arm doesn’t help, the valve is bad and needs replacement. It’s a good idea to replace it with the Fluidmaster Valve, a modern improvement over the old type. It comes with installation instructions.

To correct this, bend the float ball arm downward until proper level is obtained. For Fluidmasters, adjust the float to a lower level.

One last possibility: If valve and float are okay, check the water level.
Is water flowing down the overflow tube? Flush and watch the tank refill. The water should stop flowing when the water reaches the "water level" mark inside the tank (or about ¾" below the top of the overflow tube).

Sometimes it is easy to check a tank ball leak by placing some food coloring in the flush tank. Let it remain without flushing for one to two hours. If any coloring seeps into the toilet bowl, replace the tank ball.

Below is a diagram of a toilet tank to help you identify the flush tank parts.

toilet.jpg

How can I prevent a leak?
The only way to prevent a leak is regular maintenance of your home’s plumbing structure. Check your reads regularly and compare reads on your bill to your own reads. Pay close attention to any changes in your bill or around your home, such as noisy toilets, drips or standing water in basements or crawlspaces, under sinks and in the bathrooms.

What are some ways to conserve water?
Check your faucets for leaks. If you have a leaky faucet that drips only once per second or so, you are wasting 1 gallon of water per day.

If you don’t have a dishwasher, be sure to not leave the water running the entire time you are washing dishes. Today’s dishwashers are more efficient than washing all your dishes by hand with the water running, so if you don’t have one, just fill up one side of the sink with soapy water to wash dishes and the other side with clean water to rinse dishes.

Run your washing machine only when you have a full load of laundry to do. Doing a few half loads during the week just because it is convenient wastes a lot of water.

Put something in the back of your toilet tank to displace some of the water. Be it a plastic bottle full of rocks or something else heavier than water, displacing even a half gallon of water for every flush will save a lot of water. And no, you won’t lose any flushing power. *But do be cautious of disturbing the flushing mechanism if you decide to use this technique. And please do some research before you do so*

 Turn off the faucet when you are brushing your teeth! This is a huge waste of water. Get some water on your toothbrush and turn the water off until you need to rinse. Could save a few gallons a day!

Take showers instead of baths. Filling up a bathtub takes a LOT of gallons of water. A quick 3-4 minute shower should be all you need.

In above said shower, make sure you have a low-flow shower head. Today’s shower heads use air to make it feel like a regular shower head, so you don’t lose much pressure at all.

Put some cisterns under your gutters. You can re-use rain water to water plants, clean the car, etc.
Fill up a water pitcher with water and put it in the fridge. Getting your cold drinking water from there saves you from letting the water run until it is nice and cold from the faucet, which can save a few gallons a month.

Please see our WATER CONSERVATION TIPS (PDF) file for file for further details

What are the Village's water rates?
You can see the current water rates by reviewing the most recently approved ordinance (PDF).

What are my monthly minimum charges?
The monthly minimum charges for a single family household include $8.42 for Debt Service Fee (monthly service charge) and $23.81 for Refuse (garbage) charges or $20.26/month for Single family Senior. Additional charges are based on water consumption. Charges based on 1,000 gallons of usage are as follows: Water ($6.65), Sewer ($5.26) and Capital Recovery ($5.73). Water, Sewer and capital Recovery charges increase as consumption increases. This means that each additional 1,000 gallon will cost an additional $17.64. And $19.42 for use above 10,000 gallons – Water ($7.65), Sewer ($6.04) and Capital Recovery ($5.73). Average consumption for one person living in US based on the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) determination is anywhere from 2,000 to 3,000 gallons.
***The above excludes multi-unit, unincorporated, industrial or commercial, as well as water, sewer or rubbish only accounts.***

Why does the Village raise the water rates?
The Village needs to raise water rates periodically to account for regular increases in costs. The Village gets all of our water from the City of Chicago. The Village regrets that rate increases are necessary but failing to increase our rates would force the Village to cut services. It is important to remember that no taxes are used to operate the water system; all water fund revenue is derived from user charges.

What should I do if there is a water main break?
The Department of Public Works is available to repair water main breaks 24 hours a day, seven days a week. If you know of a possible water main break during business hours, please contact the Public Works Department at 630-350-3435 (8:00 am - 3:30 pm) or the Village Hall at 630-766-8200 (8:00 am - 5:00 pm M,W,F or 8:00 am - 7:00 pm Tuesday or 9:00 am - 12:00 pm Saturday) . After business hours, call the non-emergency number for the Police Department at 630-350-3455.

How do I know when it’s safe to drink my water after a main break?
The Department of Public Works posts fliers in cases of boil orders and once the order is lifted. If you did not receive a notice, please call the Department of Public Works between the hours of 7:00 AM to 3:30 PM at 630-350-3435 to check if the boil order is still in effect.


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