If you look closely at your monthly water bill, you'll notice the size of your water meter in inches is probably displayed somewhere close to the meter readings. Most homes will be served by either a 5/8 or 3/4 inch meter, but for commercial users the meter size can go as high as 10 inches or more.
Two things determine how much water capacity in gallons per minute (GPM) you have access to at your home or business, the first is water pressure (psi) and water utilities work to deliver a consistent level of water pressure throughout their systems.
The second is the diameter of the water pipe. Customers who need higher volumes of water need a larger pipe that will allow those larger volumes to be delivered.
This table should help illustrate the impact of pipe size:
Pipe Size (inches)
When your facilities were constructed, engineering estimates were probably made of the volumes of water your toilets, sinks, showers etc. would require. Those calculations included determining the pipe size needed to deliver that volume of water, given the pressure your water utility maintains on its system. The size of the installed water meter is a function of that required pipe size. If you have a 2 inch water meter, then its very likely the the water supply line serving your facility has a diameter of 2 inches.
Most water utilities structure their rates to include a fixed monthly customer or service charge per meter. This fee helps them recover the costs associated with having the full volume of water you could possibly use available to meet your needs at any time you turn on the tap. As the meter size and potential capacity of water needed go up, so typically does that fixed fee per meter. Even if you don't use any water in a given month, you'll still be billed that fixed charge.
Still have questions? Call us at (813) 917-8952 and let us help with an answer.
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