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Is a meter right for you?

Benefits and savings

A water meter measures how much water you use. It’s similar to a gas or electricity meter.

Water meters have important benefits for you, for us and for the environment:

  • you could save money
  • you can have more control over your water bills
  • your meter is provided and installed free of charge
  • leaks on your property are easier to detect
  • you could be eligible for the WaterSure capped tariff


We believe meters are the fairest way to charge for water. They also encourage people to use water more efficiently, and make it easier to detect leaks and waste. 

Reducing water use not only helps the environment and the wildlife that shares our waterways, it helps to keep our costs down too. You can find out how much you use on everyday activities and get easy tips for using less in how to save water.

For more information, please see our booklet Your Option to Meter.

Would you save money?

It depends on how much water you use.

Here are two calculators to give you an idea of how much you would pay each year if you had a meter:

  1. A quick estimate based on average water user
    This gives a rough guide as you might use more or less than the average household (amounts shown below)

  2. An estimate based on how much you use around the home
    Provided by the Consumer Council for Water, this asks for information about your use of showers, baths, toilets, appliances, etc.

If you would like to have a meter installed, please complete the water meter application form.

Average water use per household

Number of people

Cubic metres per year













 1 cubic metre = 1,000 litres

Flats and rented properties

Flats – you can have an individual meter for your flat if:

  • your supply is completely self-contained with no shared storage tanks, and
  • your block of flats does not already have a communal or bulk meter

If you need a communal meter, the managing agents or residents’ association must agree to having one installed. 

Tenants – if you live in rented property, you have a legal right to go onto a water meter if you choose. Please make sure your landlord or owner knows that you are applying for one.

The landlord or owner cannot stop us installing a meter unless there is a reason, such as major plumbing works or alterations being necessary.

If you have a fixed-term tenancy, it must be for more than six months.

Landlords – you can only apply for a meter if your name is on the water bill. Please make sure you tell your tenants that you want to have a water meter fitted at the property.

Where would it go?

Your meter will be fitted to the pipe that supplies your property from the mains.

We usually put the meter in a small underground box under the pavement, footpath or grass verge near the front boundary of your property. It could be in the road. Sometimes we use a box on an outside wall.

If you live in a flat or communal property, or if your property does not have its own boundary stop tap and you want to have an individual meter, we may have to fit it inside the building, next to the inside stop tap. However, we will need access to it during normal working hours for reading and maintenance.

The position of the water meter does not affect the property owner’s responsibility to maintain the pipework and fittings.

When we can’t install one

We won’t be able to install a meter if:

  • you have a fixed-term tenancy of less than six months
  • a bulk meter already exists – this usually applies to blocks of flats and caravan parks
  • it is not practical because you share your water supply with neighbours
  • installation is not straightforward and you do not want to pay the charge. (We cover the cost of fitting a meter up to £650 and will charge you for the cost above this amount.)

If we can't install a meter for any reason other than the circumstances above you can choose to go on an assessed charge. This is based on: 

  • the number of people in your household
  • average use of 60 cubic metres (60,000 litres) per person per year
  • our current water charges

How to apply

If you would like to have a meter installed, please complete the water meter application form.

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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