If you receive a high water bill that you think may be caused by a leak in or around your home, check the leak detection procedure at the water meter.
Typically, the water meter is located in the front yard, near the street or sidewalk. Use a screwdriver to remove the meter-box lid. Then flip the meter lens cap to expose the meter face. Dirt may need to be removed to expose the meter dial. The meter face will look similar to this diagram.
To determine if the meter has been misread, copy down the numbers on the meter's register. (The register looks similar to a car odometer.) Compare the numbers on the register to your "Current Reading" on your utility bill. The reading from the register should be equal to or higher than the "Current Reading."
If the reading on the meter is lower than the reading listed on your bill, the meter may have been misread. Call Customer Relations at 305-665-7477 for a re-read and corrected bill.
If the meter reading is substantially higher than the reading on your bill, there may be a water leak.
Locating the leak
Most meter faces have a flow indicator. If there is no water being used at the time of inspection, and the flow indicator is moving or spinning, there may be a leak somewhere in or around your home.
Not all leaks are big and clearly noticeable. If the meter does not have a flow indicator or the flow indicator is not moving, continue with these steps to further evaluate the situation:
- Write down the numbers on the meter's register. Do not use any water for two hours, then take another reading from your meter's register. Compare it to the first reading. If the second reading is higher, there may be a leak.
- To pinpoint whether the leak is coming from inside or outside the home, close the house valve (generally located on an outside wall where the water line enters the home, or near the water heater).
- Repeat Step 1. If the meter continues to move, the leak may be outside the home in the service line that leads from the meter to the home, or in any water-using device that may be hooked to the system outside the home.
- If the meter does not move after your second test, the leak may be inside the home.