> Home > Living > Services and Utilities > Water > Water Metering

Water Metering

A household water meter is a brass fixture, about the size of two fists put together. The meter measures water flow into the home, and is used to determine water and sewer charges. A wire connects the meter to an automatic reading box (ARB) outside the house, which the municipality uses to read the meter without entering the home.

The household meter has a mechanical, digital (odometer-like) counter, and a red indicator, which is about 2 inches long. The meter reads in cubic meters, where one cubic meter is about 220 imperial gallons. The black odometer numbers on the white background are cubic meters, and the white numbers on a black background are tenths of a cubic meter. The numbers on the outside of the dial are hundredths of a cubic meter, and the small ticks on the outside of the dial, about 3 mm (1/8 inch) apart are liters (1/1000 of a cubic meter). To roughly test your household meter, run water into a 20 liter (5 gallon) pail, and the large red dial should move about 20 ticks, or 0.02 cubic meters.

The water meter can also be used to test for household leaks. The snoop indicator is a small red triangle or pointer that rotates when water passes through the meter. It will show flows as low as a slow drip. To perform a test, make sure everything is turned off, including:

  • toilets
  • sinks
  • automatic water sprinklers
  • hoses
  • automatic humidifiers
  • automatic ice machines
  • automatic drinking water filters or reverse osmosis devices

Watch the red triangle or pointer for a minute or two. If the pointer moves, either something is using water, or there is a leak. If you suspect a leak, please call to make an appointment for a technician to check your meter. If you have recently moved and would like your water meter hooked up, please call to have it installed.

How to read your Water Meter

For recent moves, water leaks and general questions, call 780-743-7000.

FLOOD RECOVERY: Information and resources