Rural Water System: System Water Main, Meter Reading Overcharging, Leak Detection

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by Goldpenbkkpr, Feb 21, 2011.

  1. Goldpenbkkpr

    Goldpenbkkpr New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Louisiana
    WHY would the "disk" leak detector be rotating forward and backward?

    The System Meter Main is a 5/8th Rockwell register in Gallons with "odometer", red sweep hand rotating clockwise in 10 gallon revolutions. Installed 1981, servicing new single residential construction. Rural Water System bills with a 2000 Gallon Base Rate, plus $3.00 per 1000 gallons. Experience (years) has been a pattern of erratic reading. Example: Bill Date: 01/12/2010 2,240 gallons; 02/10/10 2,290; 03/07/10 6,510; 04/06/10 8,590; 05/10/10 2,350; 06/06/10 3,950; 07/10/10 5,190; 08/09/10 3,840; 09/03/10 3,030; 10/05/10 9,380; 11/07/10 2,740; 12/04/10 3,970; 01/08/11 10,280; 02/08/11 1,620.

    The Main Meter distribution line is 1 inch, smaller than, a 2 inch line from meter main service line to point of entry of house.

    There is only one person in this house and only a few quest on a non-regular basis.
  2. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,486
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    Apparently the disk leak detector isn’t rotating backwards enough!!! I don’t know why it would be rotating backwards at all. A leak shouldn’t get better until you fix it. The rate should not go back down until the leak is fixed. I would guess something like a toilet flapper that doesn’t always seat right. A toilet with a 1/4 GPM leak is over 350 gallons per day, or 10,000 per month. A toilet flapper without a leak is 0 GPM and 0 gallons per month. :)
  3. Goldpenbkkpr

    Goldpenbkkpr New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Louisiana
    The disk and sweep hand is registering usage, even when the point of entry shut off Valve is OFF.
  4. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,486
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    There are only two kinds of shut off valves, those that leak, and those that will leak. I would say that valve is leaking, because if there is no water going through the meter the hands should not be moving.
  5. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    'City' water systems are famous for much higher water pressure overnight than during the day. A leak may happen with higher than normal pressures and stop when the pressure reduces to normal.

    If that is not the case, meaning you see the meter showing water movement during the day, and when you aren't using water, it says a leak between the meter and the shut off valve past the meter.
  6. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
    And there are only 2 kinds of meters, those that will break and those that are broken.

    Put in a shut off right behind the meter and see if it stops moving . I would hope you called the city to have a look by now.
  7. Goldpenbkkpr

    Goldpenbkkpr New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Louisiana
    On 02/21/11, The Secretary-Treasurer of the Rural Water System ADVISED to close the Shut OFF Valve located at Point of Entry to House at NIGHT. Done that 9:00PM 02/21/11, Still Off as of this posting 02/22/11 Approx time 9:00PM. The Leak Disk is still turning forward and backward, showing about 6.1 gal usage of 10 gallon sweep hand revolution. Considering all reply to my question, this is what I've decided to do based upon your recommendations: "Put a shut off right behind the meter and see if it stops moving," Will answer two questions (1) supply line leak (2) or System Meter Main problem. Will also check back with Sec-Treas, see if she would give me Pressure in the system line. The supply line is about 1000 +/- feet, buried deep. Before digging, the process of elimination should point in only one direction, hopefully. Thank each one for expert advise. I'll be back when more facts are available.
  8. masterpumpman

    masterpumpman New Member

    Messages:
    729
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Installing a cutoff valve at the outlet of the meter will tell you if the water meter usage is your problem or the water companies problem. If the meter still runs with the valve turned off it's their problem. If the meter no longer runs it's your problem. If the meter runs backwards anytime I would say it's their problem.
  9. Goldpenbkkpr

    Goldpenbkkpr New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Louisiana
    Thanks Porky: "If the meter runs backwards anytime I would say it's their problem" // This is what I believe! OK, I changed my mind, instead of installing a new install shut off valve after the meter, I replaced the existing Point of Entry shut off valve at house and replaced an existing shut off and water line to toilet in master bath. Reason: Emergency. On 02/24/11 with POE SHUTOFF In OFF position, not at home from 8AM-5PM, checked reading on meter had registered 1100Gal one day. After business hours water company could not come cut meter, but gave me permission to shut the meter valve, meter read. On 02/26/11 Meter Read again (same numbers), before replacement work began, completed installation, checked for leads, OK. Today 02/27/11, checked reading AM and PM. AM Meter had droplets of water ON meter underside, 8PM, with flash light, sat awhile watched "Disc" it is now rotating backward and forward worse that BEFORE replacing after meter valve. So, I''m still confused. Do I go ahead and install another shut off valve behind meter, do I install a back flow preventer, and start digging. The meter company is not going to do anything...unless I force. It could get interesting... AND BY THE WAY THERE ARE NOT IN POOLS, SPRINKLER SYSTEM, ETC.
  10. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,486
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    I am going to say you have a 2 GPM leak between the meter and shutoff valve. 1100 gallons in 9 hours. I don’t think even a bad meter will spin unless there is flow through it. A shut off valve after the meter can verify this.
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