Urban Utilities has a water meter replacement program underway to ensure reliable and accurate billing.
Water meters are mechanical devices and like all mechanical devices they wear with usage and with age. As part of the proactive water meter replacement program, water meters are routinely replaced when they have been identified as having reached the end of their life cycle.
Who is replacing the meter and how can I identify them?
The water meter replacement work is undertaken by licensed plumbing contractors authorised by Urban Utilities to deliver this work. They are recognised by Urban Utilities Identification Cards, vehicle signage and wear high-visibility work uniforms.
When will the water meter be replaced?
You will receive a notice in your letterbox when the water meter replacement program is coming to your neighbourhood. After receiving the notice, your old water meter will be replaced within the next eight weeks, between the hours of 7am and 6pm, weekdays.
Do I need to be at home?
Water meters are usually located near the front fence of your property in the grass or footpath so it is not necessary for you to be at home when the replacement takes place. Learn more about where your water meter is located
What can I expect?
When the work is taking place you can expect:
- temporary water interruption for up to 45 minutes while the new meter is installed. If at home, residents will be notified by the plumber onsite, prior to work commencing
- temporary water supply while the new meter is being installed, if required
- noise and dust disturbances from excavation and/or concrete cutting machinery (only if required).
Urban Utilities will work closely with our contractor to restore any areas impacted as a result of this work.
How long will it take to replace my water meter? Will I be without water?
A meter exchange will only take a few minutes, however, if the meter base and tap needs to be replaced, it could take up to 45 minutes, therefore, water could be off for up to 45 minutes.
How will I know when the work is completed?
When the work is finished, the contractor will leave a New Water Meter card in the letterbox advising that work has been completed and recording the consumption from the old meter. Once removed from your property, we store the old water meter for one month before disposing of it.
Will the area around my meter be affected and restored?
A small area around the meter might be disturbed during the replacement. Wherever practicable, we will restore this area as close as possible to its original condition and this includes the replacement of any dirt or grass in the affected area. If the restoration cannot be completed on the day of meter replacement, the property owner/tenant will be advised.
What happens if it is not possible to replace my water meter?
If the contractor is unable to replace your water meter, you will receive a notice in your letterbox advising of the reason and any follow up action required by you/the property owner. Some reasons the contractor might not be able to complete the replacement include:
- unable to access the water meter
- tree branches and/or foliage in the immediate work area
- the contractor suspects the water meter is housed in a box made from sheet asbestos
- an issue with your pipework which needs to be repaired before we can proceed.
I received a notice advising of the possibility of asbestos in my water meter box. Is this dangerous?
Some older water meters were housed in boxes made of sheet asbestos. There are no health risks associated with this, as asbestos fibres are only deemed hazardous when they become airborne and are inhaled. Your water meter replacement will be rescheduled and performed by licensed asbestos contractors, in compliance with Work Health and Safety. Safe Work Methods will be followed to ensure the safety of the public and our contractors.
I am renting this property and do not own it. Do I need to tell the owner?
If you receive a notice from us advising that work must be carried out before we can proceed with the water meter replacement, you should pass the notice onto the property manager or owner.
What should I do if I have issues after the water meter is replaced?
If you have an issue with low pressure, leaking meter or taps, dirty water, or incomplete restoration around the meter (ground not restored properly) we encourage you to contact us. Disturbance of soil and pipes during the replacement might cause temporary discolouration of water for a short period. Air in the pipes might also cause milky-coloured water. If this occurs, please turn on the tap nearest to ground level (usually an outside tap) and let it run for up to five minutes until water runs clear. If the problem continues, please contact us
What happens to the reading on the old meter?
The plumber records the reading of the old meter and it is used for billing purposes.
What happens to the old meter?
Once removed from your property, we store the old meter for one month before disposing of it.