Reading My Water Meter


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Your meter measures how much water you use for everyday tasks or for keeping your garden green and flowers blooming. Once you know how to read your meter, you can do a meter test to detect leaks.

Drawing of two water meters:gallons and cubic feet versions.
How to read your water meter

If your water meter measures gallons:

Most water meters look like a speedometer or odometer in your car. Water meters in Eugene usually measure in gallons. Look on the dial to see the unit of measure.


The pointer of a gallons meter turns completely around the dial for every 10 gallons that flows through the meter. When the pointer is between numbers, read the lower number.

The counter on the meter displays the number of times the pointer has revolved. So the counter shows the first numbers in the reading. Read the numbers on the counter from left to right.

There is a painted zero at the end of the counter that is a placeholder for the number shown by the pointer. For instance, Example 1 reads 679,089.4 gallons.

If your water meter measures cubic feet:

Some older meters measure water in cubic feet. Look on the dial to see the unit of measure.

The pointer of a cubic foot meter turns completely around the dial for every 7.5 gallons that flows through the meter. When the pointer is between numbers, read the lower number.

The counter on the meter displays the number of times the pointer has revolved. So the counter shows the first numbers in the reading. Read the numbers on the counter from left to right.

The pointer shows the last number in the reading. For instance, Example 2 reads 5,635.2 cubic feet.Multiply by 7.5 gallons to convert a cubic foot meter reading to gallons.

The calculation to convert the Example 2 reading to gallons is: 5,635.2 cubic feet x 7.5 gallons = 4,224 gallons

Meter reading worksheet

You can use the printable meter reading worksheet to compare daily or weekly readings.