Water Bill Review Process
- Customer Service Representatives will review the account, including billing and available water consumption history, in an attempt to help explain the reason for the higher than expected water bill. Additionally, Representatives will attempt to determine if there is an ongoing issue at the property (e.g. water leak).
If there is suspicion of a leak, a turn-off test may be performed to help determine if the leak is interior to the property structure or an underground leak. In this test, the property owner is asked to shut-off the valve to the main water line coming into the property structure. If water usage is still registering through the meter when the main valve is closed, it indicates there may be an underground leak at the property.
- For property owners in which hourly consumption data is available, either the property owner can check the results of the turn off test in their Customer Self Service portal or Customer Support & Services Representatives can check the results.
- For property owners in which hourly consumption data is NOT available, a field investigator can be dispatched to check the meter and to assist in identifying the source of the higher consumption.
If the property owner believes the issue is the water meter, the property owner may request that the meter be tested. PLEASE NOTE: There is a cost associated with a meter test if the meter passes the test.
Meter Testing Costs
- If the meter is found to have PASSED industry standards, the property owner will be charged a meter test fee that is based upon the size of the meter.
- If the meter is found to have FAILED industry standards, the property owner will NOT be charged the meter test fee.
Meter Testing Process
For meters under 3 inches:
- The meter is removed from the property and brought to the Department of Public Works’ Meter Shop.
- The meter’s calibration is tested on a testing machine per industry standards to determine if the meter is registering the amount of water flowing through the meter to an acceptable threshold.
- Customers can request to witness the meter test.
- Customers are provided a documented report of the meter performance.
- For meters 3 inches and above:
- The Department of Public Works’ Meter Shop will evaluate on a case-by-case basis.
ADDITIONAL CUSTOMER OPTIONS
- If the customer identifies and repairs a leak at the property, the customer may request for the account to be reviewed for a possible billing adjustment. Additional information is available on the Water and Sewer Adjustment Request webpage.
- If the customer is still not satisfied with their billing or the information they have received, the customer may request a management escalation. To learn more about Dispute Escalation, Review, and Determination Process visit the 2019 Regulations for Customer Service document
CONTACTING THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS
If property owners still have concerns, contact the Department of Public Works Customer Support & Services division. Please be sure to know the account number and/or the address of the service.
Email: DPW Billing
Mail: DPW Customer Support and Services Division
200 Holliday St., Room 404
Baltimore, MD 2120
In-Person: DPW Customer Support and Services Division
200 Holliday St., First Floor, Room 8
Baltimore, MD 21202
PRIOR TO CONTACTING THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS
Please review the Addressing a Higher Than Normal Water Bill web page.