News Flash

Water Department

Posted on: September 26, 2018

Your Water Meter


Your water meter provides information on how much water your family uses and can help identify possible leaks. The following videos and information will help you learn more about your meter including:

  • where it is located; 
  • how to read your meter and check for leaks; 
  • how to test the accuracy of your meter; 
  • how to shut off the water supply to your home.

Water Meter Location

Your water meter is located just below ground in the meter box, normally adjacent to the street. 

Reading Your Meter and Checking for Leaks

City staff reads your water meter electronically through a device called a "Transponder” located on the top of the meter. Readings are transmitted to the computer in the meter reading truck. The meter is read manually if the computer is unable to read the meter due to a tamper code or malfunction and generates a missed read error message. Meters are read once each month. You can read your meter periodically (daily, weekly or monthly) to monitor how much water your household is using and to check for leaks. 

How to Read Your Meter

1. Start by opening your meter box lid and take a picture of the dial. 

2. After a period of time (day, week or month) take another picture of the dial. 

3. Subtract the first reading from the second reading to calculate the amount of water used. This is how many cubic feet of water your household used. 

4. Multiply the amount by 7.48 to convert the cubic feet of water used to gallons. 

How to Check for Water Leaks

One good way to test for leaks in and around your home is by checking your meter. Your meter will look like one of the meters pictured below. Ensure all water is off in the home, then examine the meter to see if the leak indicator is moving. If your meter indicates a leak, resources for finding and fixing leaks are available at this link.

The leak indicator on this meter looks like a blue snow flake. If all water is turned off in the home and the leak indicator is moving, a potential leak may exist.
Water Meter with blue leak indicator

There are two ways to check for a leak on meters with an LCD display. A faucet symbol may appear next to the check on the display, or the numbers to the right of the decimal are moving even though all the water in the home is off.

Water meters with LCD displays

Testing Your Water Meter

If you are concerned about the correctness of your water meter, a bucket test is an easy way to test its precision.

Shutting off Your Water

The main water shut off valve allows you to shut off the water supply to the entire house. It is located in your water meter box.  

Meter Replacement Program

As part of the regular maintenance and upkeep of our water system infrastructure, we have an annual meter replacement program where around 1,000 meters are replaced each year. The meters selected for replacement are based on their age, with the oldest meters being replaced first. New meters typically measure usage more accurately than older meters and this may result in a higher billed consumption. 

With the new meters city staff can obtain daily usage reports for up to 90 days, however they are not wirelessly connected to City Hall, so we have to send a staff member to the field retrieve that data. This information allows our staff to help customers troubleshoot billing concerns and improve conservation efforts by providing information about consumption patterns. Of the 22,000 meters in NRH, we have installed approximately 4,500 meters so far that have this capability. 

The City of North Richland Hills uses Badger Water Meters. Badger water meters are guaranteed by the manufacturer to meet strict American Water Works Association (AWWA) standards for accuracy when they are installed. The meters are manufactured to operate and function with accuracy with water temperatures that range from 32 degrees to 120 degrees. 

For additional assistance related to your water meter you can call our Water Office at 817-427-6200.

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