Water Facts & FAQs

Water & Wastewater Frequently Asked Questions

Why is my water bill suddenly very high?

  • Plumbing leaks in toilets and taps
  • Consecutive estimated readings, followed by an actual reading
  • An increase in the number of people living in the house, resulting in greater water usage
  • An increase in the number of days in the billing period

How do I check for leaks?

Detecting leaks using water meter

  • The best way to check for overall leaks is to use your water meter
  • Shut off all of your water-using appliances & fixtures on the property (e.g. showers, sinks, washing machines, fridge etc)
  • Check the small triangle in the centre of the face of your water meter.  If it is moving, you likely have a leak

Check for a leak in your toilet

  • Add food colouring to the toilet tank & wait 20 minutes
  • If coloured water appears in the toilet bowl, a leak is present
  • One leaky toilet can fill 28 bathtubs per month
  • Toilet leaks are usually due to old flappers that need to be replaced. Replacement flappers can be purchased at your local hardware store

Check for leaking faucets or pipes

  • Check all faucets and pipes periodically, watch for drips & replace faulty parts
  • A leaking faucet can waste from 280 to 750 L of water in a week

Check for water system leaks

  • Check a garden hose and its couplings carefully for leaks.  The average garden hose delivers 27 litres of water a minute, so a small leak can waste big amounts of water.
  • A leak in your in-ground sprinkler system is less noticeable than one in a hose.  Check for wet patches in your lawn that do not dry. Have your irrigation contractor do a system check-up.

What happens if my meter is stopped?

  • Please contact public works to make an appointment to get a new meter. An estimate of your consumption will be added to your next utility bill based on historical consumption

How to read your water meter

The diagram outlines the various components of a water meter and how to read it

  • You can monitor your water use by reading your meter daily
  • The odometer records usage in cubic meters; accurate to 1/1000
  • The small circle in the bottom right of the face is a low-flow indicator
  • It will turn when even a very small amount of water is passing through the meter
  • To detect a leak, turn off everything in your house that uses water; the low-flow indicator should not be moving

Digital Meters:  If you have a digital meter, the “+” sign will appear when any flow is passing through the meter.  The absence of the “+” sign on a digital meter signifies that no flow is currently passing through the meter.


4800 South Service Road
Beamsville, Ontario
L0R 1B1

TEL: 905-563-8205
FAX: 905-563-6566
Emergency After-hours: 905-641-0971

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