FAQs about metering

Why does my property have a water meter?

More than 60 per cent of our customers have a water meter fitted.

All properties built after 1990 have a water meter fitted. Alternatively, a previous occupier may have chosen to have a water meter fitted to save money on their bill.

Where is my wameter in toiletter meter?

The water meter is usually located where the water supply first enters the house. Common places include under the kitchen sink or in a downstairs toilet or airing cupboard.

If the meter is located outside it is likely to be close to a boundary wall or in the footpath under a small black or grey cover.

If you are having problems locating your water meter please contact us.

How do I read the water meter?

For advice on reading your meter please click here.

Can I remove the water meter?

No the water meter belongs to Cambridge Water. If you remove it we will replace it at your cost. We may also take legal action.

Installing a water meter

Will you install a meter at a multi-occupied property?

We are happy to install a meter if one person takes responsibility for the payment of the bills

Who is responsible for the meter?

After installation, we shall be responsible for maintaining or replacing the meter unless you damage or misuse it. In this case, you may have to pay for any repair.

I do not own the property but I pay the bill, can I have a water meter?

If you are a tenant or leaseholder of the property, you do have the right to install a meter, however, we advise that you obtain permission from your landlord or freeholder prior to the pre-installation survey.

I am a landlord. Can I apply to have a water meter fitted at my property?

You can only ask us to fit a meter if your name is on the water bill. Please make sure you tell your tenants if you want to have a meter fitted at your property.

I am making alterations to my property and the meter is in the way, what should I do?

Please contact us to discuss.

To remove our water meter without our prior consent is an offence. Any meters removed without Cambridge Water's consent will be replaced at charge to the account holder.

I think my meter is faulty, what should I do?

Contact us and we will come out and check it for you.

Can I change my mind after the meter has been fitted?

You may revert to rateable value providing that:

  • You give us notice within 24 months of installing the meter
  • This is the first time you have asked us to change back to unmeasured charges
  • You still occupy the property. A new owner cannot ask to convert the property back to rateable value
  • You opted to have the meter installed. Reversion is not available for properties that have been compulsorily metered.

Reversion to unmeasured charges takes effect from the date that the request to revert is received by Cambridge Water. We will need to take a final meter reading in order to complete the reversion.

If you revert back to rateable value we will not remove the meter. 

When you have a meter, we will charge you for all the water that passes through it. However, if you discover a leak on your external supply pipe, we may be able to give you an allowance to cover some or all of the water lost.

For more details regarding leaks click here.

Will fitting a water meter affect the electrical earthing of my property?

Many years ago, the water service pipe was sometimes used as a means of providing electrical earthing to a property.

This is no longer regarded as a safe method of installation and has been prohibited since 1966. Buildings built before that date may still be earthed in this way.

If your water supply is used to earth your property, the work we carry out to fit a water meter may make it unsuitable for this purpose.

We strongly advise that you contact your local Electricity Supply Company or other approved electrician. They may recommend that you have your earthing checked and are entitled to charge you for this service.

We would emphasise that the earthing for a property is an essential safety requirement and is the sole responsibility of the owner of the property. We cannot accept any legal liability for damage or injury resulting from the use of a water service pipe as an electrical earth.

If you are not responsible for the electrical earthing of this property, would you please immediately pass this notice to the owner or other appropriate person.

Stopped or inaccessible meters

In the event of the meter stopping or becoming temporarily inaccessible, consumption will be estimated by the company from the most reliable data available.

Estimates on unread meters

If we are not able to establish how much water has actually been supplied to the property, we make an estimate and use this estimate as the basis for charges.

The estimate is made by reference to a previous like period.

If no previous like period exists, we base the estimate on average using the most reliable data available.