Home » DPW » Did You Know?

Water-saving Tips

Water Usage Information

Waterfront Wisdom

Know Your Meter
The water meter measures the amount of water that is used in the household.It is usually located in a basement, utility closet or laundry room. On the outside of the house is a remote reader that allows the meter readers to obtain a reading without entering the house. The meter measures water usage in cubic feet. Each cubic foot equals 7.48 gallons. Reading your water meter is much like reading the odometer of a car. For billing purposes, only the first four digits on the left are used.
 IMG  small

Checking for Leaks
If the meter is equipped with a diamond or triangle shaped leak detector, and it is stationary, there is no leak.  If no leak detector is present, turn off all faucets on both the interior and exterior of the home.  Watch the sweep second hand for a minute or two.  If it moves, there is a leak in the home.  If it remains still for 10 - 15 minutes with no movement there is no leak. If it moves without water being used, a leak exists.

Leaky Toilet? Silent but costly
Toilet leaks can be silent but very costly over a short period of time.The best defense against these leaks is routine maintenance of the various parts of your toilet. In order to see if your toilet is leaking, place food coloring or a powdered drink in the back of the toilet tank (in order to change the color of the water) and wait 30 minutes. If any of the colored water enters the toilet bowl (without flushing)--your toilet is leaking. At this time, you need to examine the flush valve ("flapper") and the refill valve--they may need repair or replacement. Also, be sure to check the water level in the tank so that it is not entering the overflow tube when not in use.

Voluntary Odd/Even Water Use
Due to the increased demand on the municipal water supply for lawn irrigation during warm, dry weather, Shelby Township will once again implement a voluntary odd/even sprinkling restriction May 1st through October 31st. Service customers with odd numbered addresses are asked to restrict outdoor water usage to odd numbered calendar dates and even numbered addresses are asked to restrict water usage to even numbered calendar dates and that outdoor water usage be discontinued between 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. and from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Compliance with this request to conserve water helps ensure adequate water pressure for drinking, sanitary usage and fire fighting requirements. If we experience another extremely dry summer, this voluntary restriction may again be boosted to a mandatory restriction. Be a good neighbor and do your part by complying with the odd/even sprinkling program.

Area Maintenance Meters
Lawn sprinkling, even while adhering to the odd/even sprinkling restriction is very expensive, especially for those customers who have both municipal water and sanitary sewer. An area maintenance meter is available through the Department of Public Works for those customers. This area maintenance meter measures water used for lawn sprinkling, and sanitary sewer fees are not charged on that portion of the water bill. Please call the D.P.W. at (586) 731-5990 for further information.

Be Water Wise
Lawn irrigation is one of the single largest uses of water during the spring, summer and fall. This use needs to be monitored very closely. Many landscaping experts state that lawn irrigation equal to an amount of 2 to 3 inches per week is sufficient for healthy turf growth. Depending on the sprinkler head, this equates to approximately 20 minutes of sprinkling every other day.
  • Do not water too frequently--grass will form a deeper, healthier root growth when the water is allowed to soak into the ground at a slower rate.
  • Water lawns early in the morning during the hot summer months. 
  • Use rain shutoff devices to avoid lawn irrigation during inclement weather.

Overflow or Backup of Sewage Water or Stormwater System?
  • CONTACT DPW IMMEDIATELY (586) 731-5990 
  • AFTER HOURS CONTACT (586) 731-2121 (Police Dept)
If you experience an overflow or backup of a sewage water disposal system or stormwater system, please contact the Charter Township of Shelby Department of Public Works immediately at (586) 731-5990.  After business hours contact the Shelby Township Police Department at (586) 731-2121. You must file a written claim with the DPW within forty-five (45) days after the overflow or backup was discovered. To receive a Notice of Claim form, please contact the Shelby Township Department of Public Works at (586) 731-5990 or by mail at 6333 23 Mile Road, Shelby Township, MI 48316. Failure to provide the required notice will prevent recovery of damages.