City of Bedford, Indiana



Home »  Utilities Department »  Water/Sewer FAQ's
Frequently Asked Questions

How much will I pay each month?
The national average states that the average person will use 69.3 gallons of water per day. Your bill is determined by the amount of consumption showing on the meter at the time of reading.

Is my water meter actually read every month?
Your meter is read monthly. The only exceptions to this are extreme weather conditions that prohibit the service workers from accessing your meter or something blocking access to your meter. If your meter is located in your basement, you will need to provide us access to the meter in order to receive actual reads.

What services do your offer?
We provide publicly owned water and wastewater utility service.

How many days in advance do I need to have service turned on/off?
We advise coming to the office at least two (2) days in advance to accommodate your desired date.

What number do I call in an emergency?
Emergency calls can be taken in the office during regular business hours. After hours, during weekends and on holidays, emergency calls should be made to 275-7173.

What do I do if I have a Sewer Backup?
If only one fixture (i.e. toilet, tub, sink, etc.) is not draning properly, you probably need to contact a plumber to repair a sewer line or fixture in your home. If multiple fixtures are not draining properly, call the Utilities Office at 275-1626 during office hours or, call 275-7173 if after hours.

If I see a water leak, how do I get someone to check it out? How long will the water be off?
All main breaks are considered an emergency situation. If sited during office hours (7:30 a.m. - 4:15 p.m., Monday through Friday), please call the Office at 275-1626. A repair crew will be dispatched as soon as possible. If sited after hours, please call the emergency number at 275-7173.

What part of the service line is the Water Department's responsibility and what part is mine?
Anything beyond the meter pit, which is usually located in the right-of-way or at the property line, is the owner's responsibility. Anything from the meter pit to the main line is Bedford City Utilities' responsibility. Bedford City Utilities is also responsible for the meter itself and its connection.

The water pressure in my area is low. Why? Who should I contact?
Possible causes for low pressure in your home or neighborhood might be:
  1. Screens on the faucets are plugged
  2. A plumbing problem
  3. A main break in your area
  4. A major fire
  5. The main valve at the water meter is off or partially off
  6. Water main maintenance or construction work
If experiencing low pressure problems, please contact Bedford City Utilities at 275-1626.

Why is the water brown?
Brown water is caused by iron and other materials stirred up in the water mains. This can be caused by a water main break, pulling water from hydrants, crews flushing out hydrants, etc... The water is safe, but do not wash whites, since they will discolor. If you are experiencing this problem, simply turn on any COLD WATER FAUCET (do NOT turn on hot water faucet) and let the cold water run for a few minutes. This should help clear out the residue in your service line. If the water does not clear up within 24 hours, please contact Bedford City Utilities at 275-1626

Why is my water cloudy?
If the water is cloudy, it will usually clear up after it sits for a short time. Cloudiness in the water is typically caused by faucet aerators or by air in the distribution lines. However, cloudiness that DOES NOT DISSIPATE may be calcium. IF you have this problem, please contact Bedford City Utilities at 275-1626.

How do I check for leaks?
Dripping faucets, running toilets, water heater pressure relief valves, water softeners, and outside hoses left running or dripping are found to be the most likely places that leaks are found. Large amounts of water can be lost in a relatively short period of time through leaks in the home.

How do I spot a leaking toilet?
Toilets are sometimes called "silent" or intermittent leaks because they cannot always be heard. They may run and leak one time, stop, and start leaking another time. If you think your toilet is leaking you can use the dye test to check. Food coloring works best; use green, red or orange, put a few drops in the tank portion of the toilet, do this at night while not in use. If the dye is in the bowl portion of the toilet in the morning, the toilet is leaking. This can usually be repaired by replacing the parts inside the toilet. These parts can be purchased at any local plumbing supply for a reasonable price.

Who is responsible for a water leak?
In order to find out who is responsible, the meter setter will be turned off by Bedford City Utilities. This determines which side of the meter the leak is on. If the leak stops and it is not inside of the meter pit, it becomes the homeowner's responsibility to have the leak fixed as soon as possible.

Who do I call to locate utility lines before I dig?
Bedford City Utilities is a member of the Indiana Underground Plant Protection Service. Just call 1-800-382-5544 at least "2 Full Working Days" but not more than 20 calendar days prior to your excavation and they will notify Bedford City Utilties.

HOW MUCH WATER DO YOU USE?
  Non Conserving Conserving Activites
Shower (5 Minutes) Regular Showerhead
30 gallons
Low Flow showerhead / restrictor
15 gallons

Wet-down, rinse off
4 gallons
Toilet Flushing Conventional Toilet
5-7 Gallons per flush
Ultra-Low Flush Toilet
1.6 Gallons

Displacement Bag
4-6 Gallons
Brushing Teeth Tap Running
10 Gallons
Wet Brush, rinse briefly
Half Gallon or less
Tub Bath Full
20 Gallons
Minimal Water Level
20 Gallons or less
Shaving Tap Running
20 Gallons
Fill Basin
1 Gallon
Washing Hands Tap Running
20 Gallons
Soap and Rinse
1 Gallon or less
Dishwashing Tap Running
30 Gallons
Wash and Rinse in Dishpan or Sink
5 Gallons
Automatic Dishwasher Full Cycle
15 Gallons
Short Cycle
11 Gallons

How can I lower my water bill?
  • Take showers instead of baths.
  • Turn off water while brushing your teeth.
  • Fill the sink with water when shaving rather than letting the water run.
  • Avoid watering your lawn during the heat of the day to prevent loss due to evaporation.
  • Save dishwater and use it to water your flowers
  • Repair dripping faucets and running toilets immediately.
  • Know the location of your shut off valve in case a water line leak occurs
  • Replace old water-wasting toilets with 1.6 gallon flush toilets.

Can a small leak (such as a toilet leak) increase my bill very much?
A typical toilet can leak around 2 gallons per minute. If this is not repaired, a toilet can leak up to 3,000 gallons of water a day. A pipe with a small leak can leak from 24,000 gallons to 394,000 gallons of water in one month’s time.

Be a Leak Seeker!
Conduct routine leak checks often. If you find a leak, fix it immediately! What appears to be a very small leak can become a very large bill. Above is a chart designed to give you an idea of the amount of water that can be lost from a small stream. The numbers are based on a water pressure of 60 PSI and a continuous leak over one month’s time.