Requesting a meter
Can I request a water meter by phone?
Yes, you can call us on 0800 980 8800 and we'll send you a form to complete. Alternatively you can fill in our handy form
Our lines are open from 8am to 8pm Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm Saturday and closed on Sunday and bank holidays.
Our textphone service for customers who are deaf or hard of hearing is on 0800 316 6899. Please note, voice calls or mobile numbers aren’t accepted via this number.
I’ve requested a meter – what happens next?
We'll be in touch
We'll contact you within 14 days of receiving your application to arrange a survey at your home. This is to check the most suitable place to fit your meter.
Our aim is to fit your meter outside your home, so we can easily read and maintain it without having to disturb you. The survey is to check that this is possible. If it is, we'll come back and fit it once we have permission from the local highways to work in the pavement or road.
If we can’t fit a meter outside, we'll look to see if it can be fitted elsewhere and this may be inside your home. In this case, we'll either fit a meter during the survey or make an appointment to come back and fit it at a convenient time for you.
Fitting your meter
Outside your home:
If we can fit your meter outside, you don't need to be at home when we carry out this work. We'll need to turn your water off for around 20 minutes.
Inside your home:
This will be an arranged appointment with you. We'll need to turn your water off for around 20 minutes to fit your meter, so please make sure you don’t have any appliances on that use water during this time.
Once your meter is fitted, we'll leave you a leaflet giving you all the information you need about your new meter, including ways to help you save water, energy and money.
Your account will be updated automatically and we'll write to you with your new account number when this has been done.
Properties with complicated plumbing - particularly in flats - may mean it's not always possible to fit a meter. If this is the case for your home, we’ll review your charges to see if there's a better tariff that reflects the amount of water you use. If it turns out that you already pay the lowest tariff for your charges, your account with us will remain unchanged.
What if I change my mind about having a water meter?
You can only opt out of being metered if you meet all of the following criteria:
- You applied for a meter via the optional metering route
- The meter was installed within the last 12 months
- The property is not within one of our compulsory Smart Metering areas
Installing your meter
How long will it take to fit my meter?
Will you make sure that your work is completed neatly?
I have a shared driveway – will this inconvenience my neighbours?
Why can't I have a water meter fitted?
Properties with complicated plumbing - particularly in flats - mean it’s not always possible to install water meters.
In these cases, we ensure you get a water bill that better reflects the amount of water you use. A flat rate tariff is available called the ‘Assessed Household Charge’.
These charges are based on the average consumption of our metered customers and reflect the number of bedrooms in a property. There's also a Single Occupier Tariff if you live alone.
These tariffs are only available if you've applied for a meter but we've been unable to fit one - either because it's not possible or it would be too expensive to fit.
I’d really like to have a meter but you told me you can’t fit one. Can I appeal?
Your technician told me I couldn't have a meter because it would be too expensive – is that right?
I share my supply pipe with my neighbour. Why does this prevent me from having a water meter fitted outside my property?
Reading your meter
How do I access my meter?
What numbers should I read?
You only need to record the black numbers, which show the amount of water you've used in cubic metres (m³). Depending on the type of meter, it may have four or five of these. Please ignore the red numbers (these record tenths and hundredths of a cubic metre).
How often will you read my meter?
There’s water in the meter pit – is there something wrong with it?
I’ve just got a new water meter. Do I need to contact you to update my account?
Billing and your account
How will I know I’m being billed using the right meter?
How often will I receive my metered bill?
I've received an estimated bill – how is this calculated?
How will moving to a metered account affect my current payment plan arrangement?
I pay my charges on a payment arrangement. Should I stop paying until my meter is installed?
I have a new water meter but I've already paid my bill based on my unmetered charges. What will happen to the money that I’ve already paid you?
If I go onto a new tariff, when will this come into effect? Can it be backdated to the date I moved into the property?
My metered bill seems unusually high. Why could this be?
- There could be several reasons to explain why your bill is higher than expected:
- If your previous bill was based on an estimated reading, but the estimate was too low - so your current bill may include additional costs from previous bills.
- Your current bill may cover a longer period of time than your previous bill.
- Your water usage may have gone up as a result of more people moving into your property, or if you've had visitors to stay.
- You may have a problem with your domestic plumbing or with an appliance. This could be anything from a dripping tap to a washing machine flood. A dripping tap alone can waste as much as 140 litres of water a week.
- Activities such as building, renovation or decorating could mean you've used more water than normal.
- If you've used a hosepipe or sprinkler, your water usage will have shot up. Using a hosepipe for just one hour uses as much water as the average person uses in three days (one day's usage can be as much as 155 litres).
If you still think your bill is too high and doesn’t reflect the amount of water you've used, you may have a leaking pipe at your property. We can help you check if you have a leak.
Should I let you know if I make changes to my property (i.e convert to flats)?
If you decide to change the structure of your property, you need to let us know before the work starts. This could be:- converting it into flats
- selling part of it, so one property becomes two- using part of the premises for commercial purposes.
We can then ensure you are being charged correctly and install a water meter or additional meters, if required.
If this is the case, please contact our Developer Services team:
Please call us on 0800 009 3921. Our lines are open from 8am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, and are closed at weekends and bank holidays.
Please send your emails to firstname.lastname@example.org
Write to us
Rose Kiln Court
Rose Kiln Lane
Where does our water come from?
We supply 2.6 billion litres of drinking water to nine million people across London and the Thames Valley every day. Just over a third of this water is pumped from natural reservoirs below ground and 65 per cent is pumped from rivers.
The more water we use, the less water is left in the environment. During long periods of low rainfall when water is in short supply, the low flows left in rivers reduce the available habitat for fish and other wildlife. This can also lead to water restrictions to help ensure there is enough water to go around.