Downsize, Disconnect or Nominal Sizing

We understand that commercial activities sometimes change and may require an alteration to an existing meter connection. It is recommended that you read the below information before you apply for a meter alteration. 

Downsizing a metered water service

Downsizing a water meter may be due to a change in business requirements and that larger meter that is currently installed at the property is no longer required. 

If you are requesting to downsize a meter, you are required to supply a Hydraulic Engineers Report indicating the physical downsize of the water meter will not be detrimental to the water flow or pressure required at the premises. Further to this, the hydraulic report must:

  • Provide a recommendation of the replacement size that demonstrates compliance with the relevant building codes of Australia (eg. BCA, NSW Plumbing & Drainage, NSW Fire Brigade requirements),
  • Provide plans of the premises indicating essential services (eg. fire),
  • A pressure certificate if required, and
  • Comment about the effect of a backflow prevention device if installed.

On review of your submitted request, we will issue the applicant a payment advice. This must be paid prior to work commencing. The cost of the downsize is the responsibility of the property owner, or where downsizing involves non-residential strata units, the applicant will be the Secretary of the Body Corporate. Should unforeseen circumstances occur during works further fees may be charged. 

Disconnecting a commercial water meter service

Regardless of disconnecting a water meter service, the property owner will be issued ongoing quarterly availability charges. Properties with multiple water connections may wish to reduce the number of connections servicing the property, to reduce the charges which apply on the Water Account. 

Shoalhaven Water do not charge for the disconnection of a service, but the re-plumbing of internal lines will be the responsibility and expense of the property owner. 

Should reconnection be requested at a later stage, the applicant will be charged the fee of a new meter connection.  

Nominal Sizing of a Water Connection

The nominal sizing of a water meter means that the current connection stays in place, but availability charges are reduced to reflect a smaller connection. A recommendation is required via a Consulting or Hydraulic Engineers Report as to the connection required in the below circumstances:

Fire Services

If your connection supports a fire service that requires a larger connection say a 150mm service but is only used in emergencies, Shoalhaven Water will Nominal size the availability charge based on the connection size you would require to service the property excluding the fire safety system such as a 32mm service.

For properties where hose reels are connected, a nominal size will only be applicable if the hose reels are protected by lead security seals. The full cost of a service will be charged where seals are broken, not in place, or hoses are used for purposes other than firefighting.

There is a requirement for the applicant to demonstrate compliance with the Building Code of Australia eg. Australian Standards for Hydrants and Hose Reel Codes, NSW Fire Brigade and Plumbing and Drainage Codes.

Low Pressure

If it is demonstrated that a property receives low water pressure less than 15 meters of head a nominal charge may be applied to the water account based on the size of the connection required for the property to ensure the correct supply of pressure.

Exceptional Circumstances

Shoalhaven Water may approve nominal sizing or quantity of connections if unique circumstances exist. Full circumstances and supporting documentation must be submitted to support your application.

Terms and Conditions

All requests are subject to assessment and final approval by Shoalhaven Water. Any recommendation contained within accompanying Consulting or Hydraulics Engineers Report will not place any obligation on Shoalhaven Water for approval.

Costs incurred for Consulting or Hydraulic Engineers Reports or other documentation will be at the property owner’s expense.

Alterations to water meter services may take up to 30 days to process and complete.

Availability charges will reflect the size of the new meter, or if disconnected a standard rate will still apply and be effective from the next Water Account issued after completion.

Once installed, all metered services will be levied availability charges based on the size and number of service connections. Sewer and trade waste charges may also apply. 

If the applicant is not the property owner, the applicant must notify the owner of the impending charges. 

Tampering with Shoalhaven Water Meters

Unless approved in writing by Shoalhaven Water it is an offence under the Local Government Act (LGA) to tamper with any metered service or fittings owned and operated by Shoalhaven Water. The LGA 1993 (as amended) stipulates that penalties apply in cases where an offence has taken place in relation to Council's property and assets (refer to Part 3, Chapter 16 - Offences of the LGA).

How do I apply for a commercial meter alteration?

If your business fits into one of the above categories, you can submit our online Commercial Meter Alteration Request. Supporting documentation must be attached as a PDF.


Need more help?

For further information regarding Commercial Water Meter Alterations or advice on progress of an application, contact us on 02 4429 3214.