Your meter is usually close to the property boundary, near the road. Look for the blue box in the ground - it's often marked with "water" in writing on the lid.
Use a flathead screwdriver or similar to flip the lid. Once the lid is open, you'll be able to see the meter dial and the gate valve.
The white numbers with the black background show your water usage in cubic metres (m3), this makes up your water bill. The numbers with the red background show how much water you've used in litres.
Tip: If you have a leak, turn the gate valve to switch off the water at your property.
We strongly recommend you know how to turn your water off before you might need to.
Our Maps Online tool can help show you where your water toby or gate valve are on your property. We recommend testing it every year and letting us know if there are any issues.
Here’s what a water toby or gate valve looks like:
That depends on how much water individual households or businesses use. If you use less water, you pay less. If you use more water, you pay more.
Water usage is charged every three months, at the volumetric rate per cubic metre (1,000 litres) including GST. There is also a base charge for all standard domestic customers. Non-standard and non-domestic connections are charged a base rate depending on the size of the service line. Charges can be found in the current Fees and Charges .
If your water bill is higher than previously, you have either been using more water, or you may have a leak. It is the property owner's responsibility to repair leaks on their property and pay for the cost of repair. All leaks should be repaired as soon as possible because the less water you use, the less you pay for. Council does not offer a leak investigation or repair service for private properties.
- Test for leaks. Perform an overnight leak test to check for leaks by taking a photo or writing down all the numbers on your meter before the last person goes to bed. In the following day, record the numbers again before water is used. If the numbers change but no water was used during the test period, there may be a leak on your property somewhere.
We recommend you check for dripping taps in the house, outside taps, shower head, overflow from hot water cylinders and toilet, for any leaks first and check around your property for any obvious wet patches. Trees planted on or near pipes may also cause a pipe strike as roots seek out water during summer months.
If you are unable to find obvious signs of leakage, we recommend you contact a qualified plumber to investigate. It is a good idea to request a quote that also covers full water pipe replacement between the water meter to your house, when you are selecting your plumber.
Once the leak is repaired, repeat the overnight test to make sure there are no additional leaks. Test meter accuracy: If you believe your water meter is not providing an accurate reading the Council can test your meter or restrictor. If the test finds your meter is not accurate, you will not be charged for the test. But if the test finds that your meter is accurate, then you will be required to pay the associated fee as outlined in Council's Fees and Charges Schedule.
- Actively reduce your household water use: On average, non-metered residential customers use 250 litres of water per person per day. Metered residential customers use around 190 litres of water per person per day. If you are using more than this, there are things you can do. Head to www.smartwater.org.nz to find out how to cut down how much water you are using, each and every day!
There are two parts to a water meter bill; a fixed charge which is the same for everyone and helps pay for infrastructure (a bit like an electricity line charge) and a variable charge for the amount of water actually used. The fixed charge will be the same for everyone. The variable charge will depend on how much water is used.
Read more: Your water bill at a glance.
Yes, we regularly check our network of pipes around the district for leaks and run leak detection programmes for hard-to-find leaks. We also fix any leaks reported to us by people in the community.
Installing water meters means we can monitor how much water individual households or businesses use. Often the customer finds a leak on their property which they can then repair.
Given the age of some houses in Waipa, we suspect there are a number of leaks on private properties that property owners are unaware of. These will become obvious once a meter is installed and in most cases, will prompt property owners to fix the leaks and save on water costs.
Need to report a leak?
If you find a leak or fault in the water supply network belonging to Council, please contact us as soon as possible by reporting it online or calling 0800 WAIPA DC (0800 924 723). This phone line is staffed 24/7.
No. By law, Councils can only recover the cost of treating, supplying and disposing of water. Councils are not allowed to make a profit on water.
If payment has been made within 7 days of the penalty date, and no other penalties have been incurred in the last 36 months, you will automatically have your penalty charge remitted. You do not need to apply for a 'remission of penalty for late payment' in this circumstance.
Applications based on compassionate grounds/extenuating circumstances e.g. death, hospitalisation, sickness etc. can be made on an individual basis (in writing) and do not require the payment to have been made within the 7 days. These applications are approved/declined by the Revenue Supervisor and are done on a case-by-case basis.
Responsibility for fixing a leak depends on where the leak occurs.
It is the property owner's responsibility to fix leaks and pay for any repairs on leaks that occur on private property. We recommend you fix leaks as quickly as possible, this will save you money and reduce water wastage. If it takes you a long time to fix your leak, it may affect your ability to claim a leak remission.
- Click here to find out how to claim a water remission due to a leak.
If there is a leak within the road reserve (outside your property boundary), Council will repair this as quickly as possible and restore water supply. This does not affect any meter readings on your property. See a leak? Let us know if you've seen a leak as soon as possible via our online form.
Any issues of responsibility within the legal boundary (original title of the property) are a matter for the property owners, who should refer to the terms of the cross-lease.