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Getting a water meter

How to apply

If you would like us to install a meter for you, please complete this water meter application form

What happens next?

Once we have received your application, we will send a representative to survey your property to see whether a meter can be installed. You don’t need to be at home for this as most meters are located outside.

We will let you know what we find, either in person or by letter.

If your property is suitable for a meter (most properties are) we will install one as soon as possible.

How long does it take?

We aim to fit the meter within 60 days of receiving your application. Sometimes we can be delayed by:

  • waiting for local authority permission to dig up the road
  • alterations needed to your plumbing
  • other factors beyond our control

If we don’t meet our target, and the delay is our fault, this is how we compensate you:

  • from day 61 until the meter is fitted – no charge for the water used, just the standing charge, and
  • a £10 credit on your water account

Checking for leaks

We will check for leaks when we install the meter. We are required by law to do this to make sure that you do not pay for water that is leaking away once your bills are based on your actual water use.

Checking for leaks is a simple matter of looking for movement on the meter dial. If you have turned off all your taps and appliances and the numbers on the meter are moving, it means that water is still flowing onto your property.

If you’re at home when we install the meter, we’ll ask you not to use any water while we check the meter. If you’re out and we notice the meter dial moving, our crew will leave a card asking you to contact us so that we can help you to find and fix the leak.

If we do find any leaks, you won’t pay metered charges until they are fixed.

The person who owns the property is responsible for repairs to the plumbing and fittings. This includes the underground pipe that runs from the mains into your home, known as the supply pipe.

If we find that your supply pipe is leaking when we install the meter, we’ll repair it for you at our expense if it’s a simple job. You won’t be charged for the metered water supply until the leak is fixed

Your new account

Your water charges will continue to be based on the rateable value until your new meter is installed.

We will close your unmetered water account and open a new one with a new account number from the date the meter is fitted. The balance on your old account will be transferred to the new metered account.

We will inform your sewerage company (Wessex Water or Southern Water) about your new meter and they will adjust your sewerage bills.

If we find any leaks when installing your meter, your new account will start when the repairs have been made.

The six-monthly meter readings will be used to charge you for water. We will either send you a bill soon after your meter has been read, or we will send you a statement if you pay by Direct Debit.

If we can’t read your meter for any reason, or if the meter stops recording, we will estimate your consumption for the next bill or statement. This will be based on your previous use or the best information available at the time.

Changing your mind

If you have asked us to install a meter and you would like to go back to unmetered bills, you can if you meet these conditions:

  • the new meter was optional (not compulsory)
  • the meter has been in place for at least 12 months, and
  • you ask us to remove it in writing before the end of the 24th month

The meter needs to be in place for at least 12 months as it takes a full year to get a fair comparison of your metered and unmetered bills.

Press Office

Journalists can contact the Press Office on 01392 443020 or via email


Should you get a water meter?

Water meters have important benefits for you, for us and for the environment as you can have more control over your water use and leaks are easier to detect.  

Find out more

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