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Preventing frozen water meters and pipes

Some water meters and pipes sit above the ground and may be vulnerable to the cold, particularly when temperatures fall below zero.

Prior to the formation of Greater Western Water, Western Water prepared this video about How to Avoid Frozen Pipes.

Why do meters and pipes freeze?

When meters and pipes are exposed to very cold temperatures, the water held inside them can freeze. This can result in your property having no water and can lead to serious damage.

How do I thaw my meter and pipes?

Ideally you should wait for frozen meters and pipes to thaw naturally as the temperature rises.

If you can’t wait, pour lukewarm water over the frozen meter or pipe. Never use boiling or hot water as this increases the chance of pipes splitting.

How do I prevent my meter from freezing?

On cold nights, cover your water meter with an item that traps the air around it. A bucket, plastic tub, cardboard box, hessian bag or old tyre are all good options.

Make sure the cover can be easily removed for meter reading and maintenance. Do not bury your meter as we need 10cm clearance for access.

How do I prevent my pipes from freezing?

Any pipes above ground may be vulnerable to the cold. To avoid pipes freezing, you can insulate your pipes. Various insulation options are available from local hardware stores.

Cover exposed pipes with insulation so that it fits snugly and pay special attention to joints and bends.

Before you start, make sure the pipes are clean and there are no leaks. Leaks can saturate the insulation, making it ineffective.

What do I do if my water meter splits or breaks?

Call Greater Western Water on 13 44 99 to report any problem with your meter. We will arrange a replacement.

What do I do if my pipes split or break?

It is your responsibility to repair damage to pipes on your side of the water meter. Call a licensed plumber to arrange for repair.

If the pipes are on Greater Western Water’s side of the meter (that is, the water supply before your meter), please contact Greater Western Water on 13 44 99 immediately to arrange for repair.

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