How to Read Your Water Bill and Meter

Your Bill

There are a few important things to know about reading your utility bill:

  • While most residents refer to it as their water bill, it is actually a bill for water, sewer, trash, and recycling services that are provided for residents by the City of Savannah; and
  • You are billed for these utilities bi-monthly, or once every two months. So if you want to calculate your monthly costs it will be half of your bill.

How to Read Your Utility Bill

1.City of Savannah bills on a bimonthly basis. The number of days you are billed for will vary with each bill. At the top of your bill, you can see the time period for which you are being billed as well as the number of days of service within that period. The service period is used to determine your base charges.

2. Water is billed in units. Each unit equals 748 gallons. Under Usage History, this customer’s bill shows a previous meter read of 2011 taken on 2/21, and a current read of 2017 taken on 4/15. This customer would receive use charges for 6 units of water, or about 4,488 gallons (2017-2011 = 6)

3. Your cycle number can be found at the top of your bill. You can view the “Billing Schedule and Rates” document online, to find out when your bills are generated and when they are due, according to your cycle.

4. Your water charge has two parts--the base fee that is adopted by City Council every year, and the usage fee that is based on your own water usage, that flows through the water meter.

5. Sewer service also has a base service charge that is adopted by City Council annually, with an additional fee for every unit of water you use. Just like for your water cost, if you use 15 units or less in the billing cycle, you'll be charged less. Residential and irrigation accounts have a “sewer cap” or maximum amount of usage that can be billed. The sewer cap is 50 units (hcf) or 37,400 gallons.

6. Refuse (trash and recycling) has a base service charge that is adopted by City Council every year.

7. Your usage history shows reads that have been recorded for your meter. It can show you when in the year you are using the most water. This can help you to understand how you can conserve water during times of high use, and save on your bill, too!

Your Meter

Use this excellent guide to help you read your meter:

The City of Savannah offers some of the most affordable drinking water in the Southeast. The Floridan Aquifer and Savannah River, where we get our drinking water from, are our common resources that we all have a right to access and a responsibility to protect. The fee for water charged by the City of Savannah is for the service of collecting the water, treating it to be clean and safe to drink, and piping it to your home. Similarly, the sewer fee covers piping sewer from your home to the treatment plant where it is cleaned and put safely back into the environment to be used again.