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Using your water meter to find a leak.

While some leaks such as a dripping faucet are easy to see, many are hidden and can waste thousands of gallons of water. To prevent leaks from going undetected, follow these steps every six months or if you suspect you have a phantom water waster on your property
1.Turn off ALL water using devices (taps, dishwasher, sprinklers, evaporative cooler, etc.) inside and outside your home.
2.Find your meter.  It is most often located in front of your house in the sidewalk.
3.Remove the meter box lid.  Note: some meter box lids have a “flip lid” in the center.  If so, open this instead of removing the entire lid.  Be careful when lifting the box lid to prevent injury to yourself or damage to the meter or meter lid.
4.Verify the meter number to ensure you are checking service for your residence.  The meter number on your billing statement should match the one stamped on the meter.
5.Lift the meter cap lid to reveal the dial on the meter face (see diagram below).  This dial monitors water use.  TMWA reads your meter in thousands of gallons, which is generally indicated by the white dials.  If the triangle (flow indicator) or needle moves while all water devices inside and outside the home are shut off, water is flowing through the meter and you have a leak. While some leaks, such as a dripping faucet, are easy to see, many are hidden. A leaky toilet is one of the biggest water wasters found inside a home.

 

Finding and Repairing Leaks

Locating a leak is a process of elimination. Leaks are easier to detect if you have a water meter.
Larger leaks or a combination of small leaks can often be detected by your water meter. Using your water meter you can perform a simple leak check with the following steps:
1.Make sure all water is turned off inside and outside the home.  This test must be performed when no automatic water equipment is used, such as irrigation controllers, clothes washers, dishwashers, etc.
2.Record the reading of the water meter, and wait 15 minutes. Be certain no one uses any water during this time.
3.Record the reading of the meter again. If the meter has recorded water use during the test, it might be due to a leak. Verify that the water use is not due to small appliances such as water filters, water softeners, or whole house humidifiers.
The meter test only verifies large leaks. Using this test you cannot verify that small leaks do not exist within the home. Even when leaks are detected, this test does not indicate the location of the leaks. Further investigation is needed to detect and locate all significant leaks.
If you are not able to find the leak with your water meter, contact a professional plumber.
 
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