Berkeley County Water District uses positive displacement water meters manufactured in accordance with standards established by the American Water Works Association. The meters are produced to exact specifications using high quality materials. All meters are tested for accuracy by the manufacturer before shipping.
The meter is located in a "Meter Pit" which protects the meter from damage and allows access for repairs. There is also a shut off valve located before the meter which allows water service to be shut off in order to make a repair or change out the meter. In some cases, there is also a valve located after the meter.
The District owns the meter and all the water pipes from the meter pit back to the water main in the street. The owner of the property owns and is responsible for the water service line from the meter to the house as well as any in-home or property piping.
As water flows through the meter, the mechanical device inside the meter chamber is displaced according to the volume of water used. The rotating feature is counted by a sealed register head. The meter cannot and will not record usage unless water flows through it.
Customers sometimes contact the District expressing concern over a high bill and question whether there is a faulty meter involved. Once again, the meter cannot spin unless water flows through it. We can't tell where the water goes once it is through the meter. However, mechanical devices lose tolerances over time and the meter often lets water through without being recorded.
All meters in the District systems are equipped with Automated Meter Reading (AMR). The meter is read via an electronic signal and recorded on a mobile computer. The information is directly downloaded to our billing system thereby removing human error in the process. The automation allows for minimal errors and allows us to keep the operating costs of reading meters to a minimum.