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You can save water in your garden by planting less grass. Shrubs and ground cover provide year-round greenery with less water and maintenance.

Meter Testing

meter test
Meter Testing

If BWSC or a property owner suspects that a meter is registering improperly, the meter, which is the property of BWSC, will be tested by BWSC. The meter will be removed and a new one will be installed. All meter tests are performed according to the accuracy standards of the American Water Works Association (AWWA). In addition, our testing equipment is inspected and certified by the City of Boston’s Weight and Measures Division.

If a property owner initiated the request that a meter be tested, the fee is $280 for a 5/8 inch meter, which is found in most homes and small businesses. If test results show a meter is over-registering by more than 1.5%, the meter fee will not be charged to the account and the account adjusted appropriately. If BWSC determines that the meter has been tampered with, the property owner may incur a fine. See table below for other testing fees.

When BWSC determines that a meter replacement is needed, BWSC will remove the meter and the installer will leave a printed card that explains the meter testing process. If an owner feels that the meter has given inaccurate reads, the owner has 10 days after receipt of this notification to request a meter test.

To request a meter test, please contact Customer Service at 617-989-7800.

If you suspect a leak in your system:

Most BWSC meters have a small red triangle that will only move if water is flowing through the meter, even if only a small amount. Meters do not move unless water is flowing. To check for leaks, make sure no one in the building is using water or check the meter around 3:00 or 4:00 o’clock in the morning. If the red triangle is moving, you more than likely have a leak and should check all plumbing. On the right, see the video clip of the “moving red triangle!”

Meter Testing Fees
Size of Meter Test Fee
5/8-inch $280.00
1-inch $346.00
1 ½ -inch $510.00
2-inch $625.00
3-inch or larger Cost plus Materials
Implemented January 1, 2018


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  • Boston Water and Sewer Commission
  • 980 Harrison Ave. Boston, MA 02119
  • (617) 989-7000