How to read your changeover water bill

Was your water meter replaced recently?  When a new meter is installed, the water use information on your bill will be different than what you have seen in the past.  It is a one-time-only transitional bill. 

Here’s how to interpret the key bill section once your new meter is in place:

How to read your changeover water bill
Water Service Dates.  The start date here, 02/02/2017, is the date your new meter was installed.  However, in this example, the bill itself includes water use for the full month ending at 02/21/2017, so it includes charges for water used starting 01/21/2017 – 12 days before the start date shown on your bill.  The water used between the start of your billing cycle and your new meter installation was recorded at the time of the exchange, but it does not appear on this bill.  

Previous Reading.  This line will show a zero because it reflects the reading of your new meter when it was installed.  Usage data from your old meter has been manually recorded and accounted for in this bill. 

The Missing Reading.  This item is not printed on your bill, but it refers to the water use recorded by your old meter.  You can calculate it by subtracting the “Current Reading – Actual” from the “Total Usage” line.  The difference is the reading from your old meter. [Total usage – Current reading = Old meter reading]

Current Reading – Actual.  This is the volume of water, in thousands of gallons, which was used between the time the new meter was installed and the end of your billing cycle.  In this illustration, it was 4,000 gallons.  

Total Usage.  This is the volume of water consumed from the start of your billing cycle, when the old meter was still in place, to the end of that cycle after the new meter was installed.  In this example, the total was 6,000 gallons.  At the rate of $6.46 a gallon, that comes to $38.76.  

Base Rate.  For the most common size supply line, there is a flat fee of $6 a month for maintaining an active water service account.
Other size lines have different base rates.

Water Total.  When the $38.76 for water used is added to the $6 base fee, the total charge for water service is $44.76 in this example.