Water Meter Connection and Service Line FAQs

Responsibilities


The Customer:

  • Maintain the water meter pit, meter pit cover, meter pit ring, meter setting and all related materials including valves and piping.

  • Maintain the full length of the water service line.

    • All leaks outside the right-of-way (on the customer’s property) shall be repaired by a licensed and bonded plumber at the customer’s expense.

    • All leaks in the right-of-way (not on the customer’s property) shall be repaired by Citizens Energy Group (Citizens) at the utility’s expense.

Citizens Energy Group:

  • Maintain, install and remove the water meter and its related remote reading device(s), if applicable.

  • Reinstate or disconnect water service.

  • Provide and conduct leak location services to determine responsibility.

  • Provide and conduct inspection services for all new service taps and service lines.

Bonded Plumber/Contractor:

  • Must maintain an active bond with Citizens Energy Group.

  • Must submit a water service application to apply for a permit to repair, modify or install a new service line at a property.

  • Must schedule an inspection and tap using the contact information provided in your permit.

  • Review the Citizens Water Standards Manual annually.

Responsibility_Diagram



Frequently Asked Questions

Why is it my responsibility to maintain the pit, when the meter reader is the only one who accesses it?

As described in Rule 7.1 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Marion County and Rule 5.1 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Westfield, all meter pits, meter pit covers and other materials comprising the meter pit facilities shall be purchased, owned, installed, removed and maintained in a safe manner by the Customer.

Is Citizens responsible for the water lines before the water meter?

As described in Rule 11.2 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Marion County and Rule 7.2 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Westfield, the utility will maintain, repair or replace the portion of the service pipe and appurtenances between the main and the public right-of-way line made necessary by leaks. The customer will maintain, repair or replace the portion of the service pipe, and appurtenances from the public right-of-way line to the premises. The utility shall have no duty to maintain, repair or replace service pipes which are connected to a pipe in the public right-of-way if the pipe, prior to the dedication of the public right-or-way, was a service pipe not owned by the utility. For mains and service pipes installed in easements, the utility will maintain the main and tap, but will not maintain the service pipe.

I am a tenant renting a home, am I responsible for making these repairs?

Citizens recommends you contact your landlord or the property owner. Provide him/her the improper condition notice you received from Citizens. The property owner can contact Citizens to inquire for more information.

Why do I need to move my water meter outside to a pit style setting?

The following circumstances will require the water meter setting to be moved outside include:

  • Water service line leak requiring excavation and greater than three feet of pipe to be replaced

  • Water service line leak resulting in indoor flooding or water damage

  • For properties undergoing rehabilitation or restoration, the water service cannot be connected to an undersized or inactive lead service line.

As described in Rule 7.3 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Marion County and Rule 5.3 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Westfield, whenever the service pipe to a premises having an inside meter is replaced, the meter shall be relocated in a meter pit approved by the Utility located on the Customer’s property adjacent to or near the public right-of-way or easement line at the Customer’s expense.

Can I make point repairs on the existing basement meter setting?

SDR9 polyethylene pipePoint repairs are allowed. If repairs exceed greater than three feet in length of pipe, Citizens requires the meter setting to be moved outside to address poor accessibility and possible risks associated with entering close proximity and/or foreign spaces. Material such as PEX or PVC is prohibited. Only SDR9 polyethylene pipe is allowed.

Who can repair, replace, modify or install a new service line?

Any plumber with an active bond and an approved permit with Citizens Energy Group. It is necessary to apply for a permit any time a modification or replacement of your service line is needed, or if a new service line needs to be installed.

What is the approved material for water service line modifications, replacements or installs?

Citizens Energy Group’s Water Standards detail water service line installation and meter setting specifications and can be accessed here.

For properties undergoing rehabilitation or restoration, the water service line cannot be connected to an undersized or inactive lead service line. Replacement from the right-of-way to meter pit must be with like material in the right-of-way except for lead; then the replacement material must be Type “K” Copper.

If it is a complete service replacement from the water main to the meter pit and/or into the home, it must be SDR9 polyethylene pipe with tracing wire from the main into the meter pit. Material such as PEX or PVC is prohibited. New taps must be 2-feet from the existing tap.

Domestic service must have a minimum diameter of ¾-inch inside the service line pipe for homes under 2,000 square feet (SF) and no irrigation and 1-inch for homes over 2,000 SF or under 2,000 SF with irrigation. Each domestic service shall require an individual tap. Branch services are no longer acceptable.

What is considered in compliance with regulations, when it comes to the location of the pit? (i.e. ground level)

Citizens Energy Group’s Water Standards detail water service line installation and meter setting specifications and can be accessed here.

As described in Rule 7.2 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Marion County and Rule 5.2 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Westfield, unless otherwise approved by the utility, meters 1-inch and small shall be installed in a meter pit approved by the utility located on the Customer’s property adjacent to or near the public right-of-way or easement line.

Meters which cannot be installed in outside pits shall be located inside the structure served as approved by the utility. An inside meter shall be as near as possible to the point where the service pipe enters the building in a clean, dry, safe place, protected from freezing and hot water, and not subject to wide temperature variations. In case of damage to a meter or any of its immediate attachments by reason of any act, neglect or omission on the part of the customer (including, but not limited to, the freezing of an inside meter), the customer shall pay the utility the Damaged Meter Replacement charge prescribed in Appendix B of the Utility's Rate Schedules for repair and replacement of the meter. The meter shall at all times be accessible for reading, inspection and removal for testing.

Why do I have to replace the pit nut (pit nut rounded) when the reader cannot open the pit? The reader is the one who opens the pit each month?

Citizens Energy Group meter readers carry pit lid wrenches. When the pit nut is broken, missing, or rounded, the meter reader cannot open the pit lid. As described in Rule 7.2 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Marion County and Rule 5.2 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Westfield, the meter shall at all times be accessible for reading, inspection and removal of testing.

What size is the meter pit lid?

Citizens Energy Group’s Water Standards detail specifications for water meter pit settings and can be accessed here. The most common meter pit lid is 11-1/2”.

Can I paint the lid?

It is not recommended that the meter pit lid is painted. Painting the water pit lid the incorrect color may create issues. Colors represent utilities that are below ground. Each color indicates a universal color to what is buried below ground.

  • Red - Electric

  • Orange - Communications, Telephone/CATV

  • Blue - Potable Water

  • Green - Sewer/Drainage

  • Yellow - Gas/Petroleum Pipe Line

  • Purple - Reclaimed Water

  • White - Premark site of intended excavation

Can I plant around the pit?

The space required is enough for the service personnel to easily access working around the meter pit to maintain and read the meter. As described in Rule 7.2 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Marion County and Rule 5.2 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Westfield, the meter pit must be located to be convenient and accessible for the utility representatives.

How many inches below the ground should the connection be?

Citizens Energy Group’s Water Standards detail water service installation and meter setting specifications and can be accessed here.

How much space do I need to have clear around the pit, to be in compliance with free and non-hazardous access?

The space required is enough for the service personnel to easily access working around the meter pit to maintain and read the meter. As described in Rule 7.2 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Marion County and Rule 5.2 of Citizens’ Terms and Conditions for Water Service within Westfield, the meter pit must be located to be convenient and accessible for the utility representatives.

What is the minimum size of service pipe to be used?
  1. ¾ “ for homes under 2,000 square feet and no irrigation.

  2. 1” for homes over 2,000 square feet or under 2,000 square feet with irrigation.

  3. 1” for irrigation service lines.

  4. 2” for Fire .

Am I allowed to have a branched service?

Branched services are no longer acceptable as of January 1, 2020. Citizens Energy Group’s Water Standards detail water service line installation specifications and can be accessed here.