Help with water leaks

Are you experiencing high-water usage? The more water you use, the higher your bill becomes.  

There are many reasons for possible high-water use, including, but not limited to: 

  • new garden/lawn or new sprinkler systems 
  • filling or topping up a swimming pool 
  • water using appliances (eg evaporative cooling, dishwashers, automatic washing machines) 
  • changes in climate (eg warmer or cooler weather)  
  • aging appliances (eg low efficiency star-rating) 
  • water inefficient appliances (eg faulty toilets, dripping taps, overflowing hot-water services) 
  • changes to the number of resident or visitors to the property (more showers/clothes washing etc) 

If none of the above applies, your high-water usage may be due to an undetected leak. To check if your property has a leak, you can do a leak test.

Leak test 

For the most effective test results allow a minimum of 4-5 hours to perform this test, such as: 

  • overnight 
  • while all residents are away from the property for an extended period. 

Follow the steps below, or download our fact sheet resources.

1. Leak test instructions 

Step 1: Make sure no water is being used: 

  • Turn off all taps (except the stop tap next to the water meter and at the toilet – leave those taps on).  
  • Turn off any water using appliances, eg dish washer, washing machine, garden sprinklers, evaporative cooling etc.  

Step 2: Go outside to your water meter. Your water meter is installed low to the ground and is typically a blue or green colour. 

  • At a house, the meter is often located just inside your fence line (near your front garden tap).  
  • At a unit/apartment, your meter may be near your front door, where the main meter is situated or in a service cupboard. Ask your building management if you’re unsure. 

Step 3: Record the numbers displayed on the dial (take a photo on your phone, or write down the numbers). 

Step 4: Wait at least a minimum of 4-5 hours (using no water). This allows enough time to ensure if you can detect a slow leak. 

Step 5: After 4-5 hours, go back to the water meter and record the numbers again. 

2. Understanding leak test results 

If any of your meter numbers changed during this time, this may indicate that you might have a leak.  

If this is the case, we strongly encourage you to re-check no water is being used/ensure all appliances are off and repeat the test a second time.  

A second test will ensure you’re certain of a possible leak before engaging a licenced plumber. If you call a plumber unnecessarily, you will incur call-out costs that you are liable for and are unable to claim reimbursement from us. 

If your meter numbers stayed the same during this time period, but you still think there could be a leak, call us on 13 44 99 (24/7) for more advice.  

Need support paying for a plumber?

Eligible residential customers may have access to our Water Assist Program - a funded plumbing program aimed at reducing water bills which may have increased due to leaking pipes or appliances.

Fixing leaks  

If, after you have performed a leak test twice, you are confident there may be a leak, please arrange for a licenced plumber (with leak detection equipment) to inspect further.

Unfortunately, we can’t recommend a licenced plumber to you, but you can search online, or use your local newspaper/council website to find licenced plumbers in your area. 

After a plumber fixes any leaks 

On the day the plumber fixes your leak, do the following: 

1. Record another water meter reading and take note of the date. 

2. Send the plumbers report and the new meter reading to us:

  • via email
  • or post to: Greater Western Water – 350 Locked Bag, Sunshine, Victoria 3020.

Or call us on 13 44 99 to discuss your results. If you have a digital meter, please call 03 9313 8276. We may be able to review your account depending on the problem that has been repaired. 

What happens next? 

Once you have your leak fixed and send us the plumbers report (with meter reading on the day of repair) we will register your enquiry for investigation. This investigation can take up to 30 working days for completion, however, we will be in contact with you within 10 working days to confirm receipt of your enquiry. 

Our investigation will determine if you are eligible for an adjustment on your account. 


How to read your water meter 

How to check if your toilet is leaking

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