How To Read Your Meter

All customers within the Essential Water area have their water use measured by a meter that measures usage in kilolitres (1 Kilolitre = 1000 litres). Charges for the amount of water consumed are based on the number of units of one whole kilolitre (1kL) you use during a quarterly billing period.

How does the meter work?

Kilolitres are recorded on the water meter with black digits. Litres (L) are recorded with red digits. The numbers on the right (generally coloured red) register hundreds of litres, tens of litres and litres. Depending on the age and size of your meter the number of black and red digits may vary from this example.

In the meter reading display shown, the reading is taken from the black digits (shown with the word kL or m3). This meter reads 462.379 which is the total number of kilolitres of water recorded since the meter was installed. Our charge is based on units of one kilolitre therefore, the meter reader ignores the litres (the red digits), and so this reading would actually be recorded as 462kL.

Meter reading example

Continuing with the example, if by the next time we read your meter you had used 200kL of water, the new reading would be 662.379 (462.379 plus 200). Again, we would disregard the red digits and your official reading would be 662kL. Your bill would be calculated by subtracting the previous reading (462) from the current reading (662). You would then be billed for 200kL.

For the purposes of reading a meter, only the whole kilolitres figure is read, we do not round the figure based on the litre amounts. For instance, if your exact reading was 462.990kL the reading will still only be taken as 462kL.

Download our water meter fact sheet, with a table to assist you in monitoring your water usage.