Common billing questions

Have questions about your bill? We have answers.

All of our customers receive a bill quarterly, which outlines your usage, service and disposal charges and payment information.

Below are answers to some common questions about billing, however if you require more help do not hesitate to contact our friendly customer support team on 131 691.

Is your bill higher than normal? You might have a leak!

Try our one hour leak test to find out if you have an undiscovered leak on your property.

Billing FAQs

How do I sign up for eBilling?

Visit the eBilling page and fill out your details, including an active email address. Once you have submitted the form you will receive a confirmation email and your next water bill will be sent directly to your email.

My eBill has not arrived, what do I do?

If you have not received your water bill via email please check your Junk folder. If you still cannot find the email please call on 131 691.

Can I go back to paper bills if I want to?

Yes you can. Please fill in the switch back to paper bills form.

Why is my bill higher than normal?

There are many reasons why your bill may seem higher than normal, some common causes are:

  •  Your bill may include the annual Parks Charge, usually billed in the July to September period.  
  • You may have used more water.  
  • There may be a leak on your property.

An easy place to start is to check your meter reading to confirm that you have been charged for the right amount of water. To learn how to read your meter visit the My Water Meter page.

Please note: your meter reading should be higher than the one shown on the back of your bill.

If you have confirmed that the meter reading is correct, and believe that the amount of water is too much for your circumstance, visit the Water Saving Tips page and complete a two-minute leak test.

What charges appear on my bill?

Your bill may include fixed charges for water and sewerage, as well as variable charges for water and sewerage based on the amount of water used.

Need a breakdown of your bill? Visit our How to Read Your Bill page.

Why do I pay a water service charge?

The water service charge contributes to maintenance of the water supply network. This includes City West Water's water mains, pumping stations and meters, as well as Melbourne Water's water mains, treatment plants, dams and the Wonthaggi Desalination Plant. This ensures we are able to provide high quality and reliable supply of water to our customers.

Why do I pay a sewerage service charge?

The sewerage service charge contributes to the maintenance of the sewerage network. This includes City West Water's sewer mains, pumping stations and emergency relief structures, as well as Melbourne Water's trunk sewer mains and the operating of the Western Treatment Plant. Your contribution ensures we can reliably transport sewage from our customers to a treatment plant for treatment and disposal.

How do you calculate the sewage disposal charge?

The sewage disposal charge is for the water you discharge to the sewer, including water that goes down any inside drains, sinks, toilets and any other drains that connect to the sewer.

We estimate the volume of waste water you discharge to the sewer based on the amount of water recorded through your meter.

For residential customers your sewage disposal estimate depends on your type of residence (house or unit) and what season we are in. Given these variables the percentage of water used that is estimated to have entered the sewer can vary from 62 to 90 percent during the year.

For non-residential customers the sewage disposal estimate is set at 90% and this does not fluctuate with the season.

For more details refer to our Pricing handbook which describes the estimation methodology and how they are applied.

How do you calculate the water usage step charges?

The amount of water you are charged for using is calculated from water meter readings approximately once every 90 days. The amount of water recorded is divided by the number of days in the reading period to work out, on average, how much water is used every day.

The first 440 litres per day are charged at the lowest step, water used between 440 and 880 litres per day is charged at the middle step and any water used over 880 litres per day is charged at the highest step.

For example, if you used 91 kL of water in the June quarter (91 days), this equates to an average daily use of 1000 L/day. In addition to the standard quarterly service fee, the water usage fee applied for the June quarter would reflect (an average of) 440 L / day charged at the lowest step, 440 L / day charged at the middle step and the remaining 120 L / day charged at the highest step.

What is the Melbourne Water Waterways and Drainage Charge?

We collect the Waterways and Drainage Charge on behalf of Melbourne Water. This charge contributes to the management of waterways, drainage assets and floodplains in our region.

Visit Charges explained page for Melbourne Water waterways and drainage charge.

What is the Parks Victoria Parks Charge?

We collect the annual Parks Charge on behalf of Parks Victoria. This charge helps fund the purchase, development and maintenance of Melbourne's major parks, gardens and waterways.

Visit Charges explained page for Parks Victoria charge.

When do prices change?

Prices for water and sewerage services and consumption change on 1 July each year. Our prices are regulated by the Essential Services Commission (ESC). The ESC's 2013-2018 Price Determination for City West Water sets out the process we use to update our prices annually.

Visit the ESC website for more information.

Can I order a new copy of my bill?

Access your bill anytime with our eBilling service. Sign up to eBilling and receive your quarterly bills directly to your nominated inbox.

To request a new copy of your paper bill call us on 131 691.

I am vision impaired. In what formats can I receive my bill?

We offer our vision impaired customers the option of receiving their bills in a format to suit their needs, including in braille and large print. Visit out Accounts for Vision Impaired page for more details.

How do I read my meter?

You can watch the video on reading your meter or follow the instructions outlined below.

There should be a row of up to eight or nine figures on a white background behind glass on your meter. Some numbers will be in black, some in red. The red numbers show your water consumption in litres, while the black numbers record the kilolitres.

The black numbers (kilolitres) are the ones that will be shown on the back of your bill. Compare the black numbers on your meter to the reading on the back of your bill.

The reading shown on the meter should be higher than the latest reading shown on your bill. If the reading is lower, you may have been charged incorrectly. Please call us on 131 691 to assist.


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