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Types of meters

Your water bills depend on the type of water meter you have and the way it’s set up.

Aucklanders use water in lots of different ways, so we have a range of meter types to meet your needs.

There are different meters to measure water usage. To help calculate wastewater discharge, we’ll also read meters on alternate water sources such as rainwater tanks.

While most meters are mechanical, we’re now upgrading to smart meters and magnetic meters for better accuracy to help save water and reduce costs. Smart loggers can also be installed on existing mechanical meters to get readings more frequently.

Having the right meter helps make sure you’re getting the best water services. You can learn more about the types of water meters below and the different ways they can be set up.

Water meter sizes

To measure your water demand accurately, we use different sized water meters. Meter sizes range from 15 to 150mm.

  • Small meters measure low flow accurately while still providing good pressure. However, they’ll struggle to cope with high demand. Ongoing high water use can result in low pressure or the meter breaking, causing costly maintenance and incorrect bills.  
  • Large meters provide lots of water quickly but they’re not good at measuring small amounts of water use. They’re also expensive to install and maintain.

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Residential meters

Meters for a normal home are between 15 and 25mm in size. Apartment buildings often require a larger meter.

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Small commercial, irrigation or multi-unit meters

These meters are between 25mm and 40mm in size, slightly larger than the standard residential meters. A testable backflow device may be required for some site uses.

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Combo meters

Connections larger than 50mm should use a combo meter, with two dials to record high and low flows accurately. Meters are usually 25mm for low flow and 50 to 100mm for high flow.

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Mag flow meters

These are 80mm+ in size and used for our largest connections, such as malls and breweries. They have a digital dial and use magnets to measure water use.

Other water meter setups

Shared meters
Irrigation meters
Check meters
Rain tank water meters
Master and subsidiary meters
Deduction meters

Backflow prevention

Our water meters all require backflow prevention devices. Backflow occurs when water goes through the meter but returns into our network. This can contaminate the public water supply, so it’s important that all connections have meters and that those meters aren't tampered with.

  For low-risk sites, backflow prevention may be as simple as a non-return valve. For high-risk sites, a special prevention device is required and must be tested annually.

Changing your meter

If you get low water pressure at your property or want to increase the demand for our services, you may need to change your meter size. You’re responsible for letting us know if the meter needs changing.

You can apply to change your meter size. It's important for our developer services team to understand your water use patterns, such as whether you need a lot of water quickly (peak flow) or if you use it over time (average flow). We need this info so we can correctly assess what meter size is suitable for your site.