Where we have been unable to obtain a reading, an estimated account will be issued, but we will not normally raise more than one estimated reading in a year.
However, you are welcome to read your own meter and submit it online.
Finding your meter
Most meters are in the public footpath outside your house or in the front garden. Occasionally it is located inside the house next to the stop tap.
Our film shows you how to find and read your meter but you will generally find it in a small chamber under a metal or plastic cover.
Sometimes it will be covered with a large cast iron cover which you should not lift.
Underneath the cover you may see a polystyrene plug which protects your meter against frost and debris. Please replace this when you have finished.
Reading your meter
On the meter face there are two sets of numbers, black on the left and red on the right.
The black numbers show the number of cubic metres used, while the red ones and the dials show litres.
When submitting a meter reading, only read the black numbers and ignore the red numbers (one cubic metre = 1,000 litres).
Make a note of the black numbers.
If your meter readings are high you may have a leak on your supply pipe.
To check this take a meter reading, turn off the water in the house and take a reading an hour later. Any change suggests a leak.
Find out more on how to check for a leak.
When you have finished reading the meter carefully replace the polystyrene plug and close the metal or plastic cover.
The new Automated Meter Reading (AMR) meters we are installing are the most advanced of their kind in the water industry.
These new meters mean we can read them remotely using drive-by technology. This means we can read up to 20,000 meters a day, compared to only 200 a day when we have to read them in person.
We will read your meter every six months to calculate your bills, so there is no need to read your own meter. But, if you would like to read your own meter, we can show you how.
Most meters are installed in the public footpath outside your home or in the front garden and can generally be found in a small chamber under a metal or plastic cover.
However, if it’s covered with a large cast iron cover we would advise you not to try and lift this. Otherwise, lift the cover and underneath you may see a protective polystyrene plug.
Take this out to reveal the face of your meter. The display has five black digits on a white background and records the volume of water used in cubic metres. One cubic metre equals 1,000 litres.
The red digits record litres of water and are not billed until they add up to a cubic metre.
The new AMR meters also have an inbuilt alarm system which will activate silently if water runs continuously through the meter over a 24-hour period
This means that when we drive by to read your meter, the alarm will be detected by us and we will investigate to see if there is a leak. This helps us all save even more water, energy and money.