Is my water meter messed up?

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Old 01-21-07, 08:25 PM
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Is my water meter messed up?

I've been getting water bills for amounts that are too high, like 4000 gallons a month. I and my brother use almost no water. Short showers, toilet flushed maybe four times a day, one load of laundry a day and that's it. No lawn watering or car washing. I checked for leaks, like a toilet tank stopper not all the way down, outside faucets not closed all the way, etc. Nothing wrong. The red triangle on the water meter that shows water being used is always totally still when I'm not using water. I checked the triangle when the clothes washer was filling up and it was spinning like anything so the triangle seems to be working alright. I checked last night and it showed 80 gallons used in 5 hours, and this was from midnight to 5AM when no water was used. From 5AM to 9PM it showed no water was used. It was the same reading both times. What's going on? Bad water meter? Water thieves? Thanks in advance for any advice.
 
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Old 01-21-07, 09:11 PM
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Wink

red triangle on the water meter that shows water being used is always totally still when I'm not using water.

I checked last night and it showed 80 gallons used in 5 hours, and this was from midnight to 5AM when no water was used.
Id say does the red triangle turn or not. If so could have a leak from the meter to the home. Id call the city water works
 

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Old 01-21-07, 09:11 PM
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Definitely reveal your concerns to the water department. If you can turn the water off inside your house, do so, and make note of the meter reading before you go to bed. You can get one good flush with the water off. Note the meter reading the next morning before you turn the water back on. This will give you another good indicator that somewhere downline there is a water leakage, or outright misuse of water rights.
 
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Old 01-22-07, 05:30 AM
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I second cutting off the water [at the house] and reading the meter before and after bed time. I had a leak that took months to find - mainly because it only leaked at night while the water pressure was higher. Of course as the leak got worse it was easier to find
 
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Old 01-22-07, 12:14 PM
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The red triangle was always completely still every time I checked. It works OK, I guess, because, like I said, when I had the washer filling up, the triangle spun really fast. Doesn't it not moving mean no leaks? Could it be a problem with the meter?
 
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Old 01-22-07, 03:29 PM
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JCRITCHIE, although it is POSSIBLE you could have a problem with the meter, its highly unlikely. Most utility meters (water, gas, electric) usually SLOW DOWN as they get older and the metering mechanisms don't move as freely.

Call the water department, they may want to replace the meter if it hasn't been replaced for a number of years.

Concerning the 80 gallons used between midnight and 5 AM, do you have a water softener? Softeners generally are set to regenerate during the wee hours of the night while everyone is in bed.

I work in the utility industry, and for design purposes, we estimate "normal" water usage at 100 gallons per day per person (not counting irrigation). Of course, many people use far less than 100 gallons per day, perhaps as few as 60 gpd. Assuming its just the two of you in the house, and figuring on using 100 gpd, your monthly bill should be for around 6000 gallons.

How long have you been getting these high water bills? I'd sure have it checked out quick, as paying for 40,000 gallons when you're only using 6,000 or less a month gets mightly expensive.
 
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Old 01-22-07, 05:08 PM
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To Beachboy. I also did the test where you don't run any water and write down the meter reading , including the red arrow reading (tenths of a gallon or whatever it reads) and check after an hour. I got the same reading.
 
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Old 01-22-07, 09:31 PM
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just for the heck of it, put some food coloring in the toilet tank(s). You can use Kool-Aid if you have some handy. The colored water in the tank should *not* seep into the bowl. A leaky toilet flapper is the most common cause of high water usage.
 
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