Water Meter Program Questions and Answers
How do water meters help conserve water?
Water meters make people aware about their water use. When people are charged for their actual measured use, they tend not to waste it, thereby reducing their overall water consumption.
Water meters help identify leaks. Leaks can constitute a significant portion of a city’s water consumption. Eliminating leaks benefits everyone.
What do you get if you sign up?
Free Water Saving Devices: To help promote water conservation, all properties with a water meter can request a water conservation kit. These devices can save an additional 8% on your water and sewer bill.
How often will I receive a bill under the metered rate?
Bills for water and sewer would be issued quarterly. Flat rate items, which may include drainage/dyking, waste management, and recycling, would be issued annually and included in Q1 billing.
Why, under the metered rate, are water and sewer billed quarterly instead of yearly?
A quarterly billing system was adopted to help residents improve their ability to detect water leaks as well as to verify operation of the water meter. An annual billing program would reduce the opportunity for leak detection, potentially resulting in residents accumulating substantial consumption and charges due to unattended leaks and water waste.
What happens if I have a leak?
You are encouraged to pay close attention to your water bills. If you believe your consumption is too high, and a meter re-read has determined the meter is accurate, it’s quite possible you have a leak.
What if there is a leak in our underground water service?
If a water leak is discovered on strata property and verified by a certified plumber, the strata may be charged a reduced rate for water consumption that is above their historical average. The reduced rate is indicated in Schedule B of the Water Works Regulation and Rates - Bylaw 5637.
Will it become mandatory for all homes to be metered?
It is already mandatory for all new residential single-family and multi-family homes to be equipped with a water meter. Residents in new homes began paying the metered rate in January 2004. All commercial and industrial water use is metered. The City anticipates that, in the long run, water meters will become mandatory for all of the City’s water customers.
Although rare, it has happened in some homes with very old plumbing that a leak developed after the installation of the water meter. In these cases it was not the water meter that caused the leak, but rather turning the water supply off and on again as part of the installation process.
It is important to note there are other instances where your home’s water is shut off and on again. For example, when City maintenance crews flush fire hydrants, or repair or replace a water main. Both these examples are fairly common occurrences. As such, it is a good idea to keep your home’s plumbing in a good state of repair.
If you are concerned about the state of your plumbing, you should contact a plumber to conduct an assessment for you.
Check valves which are known to occasionally cause thermal expansion problems are not installed along with the meter.
Where can I get more information?
For more information, contact 604-276-4179 or firstname.lastname@example.org.