When should a water meter be replaced

Most water meters have a lifespan of about 20 years, though some models may last longer or shorter depending on factors such as the quality of the unit and the level of use it experiences.  If your water meter is approaching the 20-year mark, you may be wondering whether you need to replace it. 

The answer isn’t always cut and dry, as there are a few things you’ll need to take into account before making a decision. In this blog post, we’ll explore when it’s time to replace your water meter and what factors you should consider in making your decision. 

1. Check for leaks. 

The first step is to check for any leaks in your system for you to know if it’s necessary to replace water meter. If you have a leak, it’s likely that your water usage is higher than normal, which means your meter is working overtime and may need to replace water meter sooner than usual. You can check for leaks by reading your water meter before and after a two-hour period during which all water sources in your home (faucets, toilets, showers, etc.) will be turned off. If the reading on the meter changes during that time period, you likely have a leak somewhere in your system. 

2. Note the age of the meter. 

As we mentioned earlier, most water meters will last for about 20 years before they need to be replaced. However, the age of the meter isn’t the only factor you should take into account—the level of use it experiences is also important. For example, a family of four that uses their washing machine once a day will put less wear and tear on their water meter than a family of four that washes their clothes twice a day. 

3. Look for physical damage, for you to know if you need a water meter replaced. 

Even if your water meter is relatively new, it may still need to be replaced if it sustains physical damage. For example, if your meter was installed in an area where it’s likely to experience freezing temperatures (such as in an unheated crawl space or basement), it may need to be replaced sooner than usual due to the risk of freezing and subsequent breakage. 

4. Determine whether replacement parts are available. 

In some cases, rather than replacing the entire water meter, you may only need to replace certain parts—such as the register or dials—to keep it functioning properly. However, this isn’t always possible—if replacement parts are no longer being manufactured or are difficult to find ,you may need to replace the entire unit . 

If your water meter is approaching 20 years old or you suspect it may be damaged or leaking, contact your local water utility company to discuss whether replacement is necessary. Remember that there are several factors that will affect their decision, including the age and condition of the unit as well as its expected level of use going forward.

By taking these factors into account, you can determine whether it’s time to replace your water meter.  Doing so will help ensure your water usage is accurately measured and that you’re not overpaying for water that’s leaking from your system.