Downtown Tampa View

Is an Irrigation Meter Right for You?

What is an irrigation meter? 

An irrigation meter, or lawn meter, measures how much water you use outside, like watering your yard or filling a pool. Depending on how much water you typically use in a month, adding an irrigation meter may or may not save you money. 

Note: Even if you install a potable water irrigation meter, you will still be billed at the same potable water consumption rate as you would for the potable water that you use indoors. Only reclaimed water irrigation usage is billed at a lower rate.

irrigation line installation

We do NOT recommend you get an irrigation meter if:

  1. Your sewer max is currently less than 10 ccf AND/OR
  2. Your lawn and landscape areas are under 10,000 sq. ft.

We recommend you first follow five simple steps to reduce your water use before considering an irrigation meter
  1. Follow Tampa’s water use restrictions to avoid a water use citation.

  2. Install a working rain sensor (Tampa Water Department customers can request a free rain sensor).

  3. Follow UF/IFAS seasonal watering guidelines. Overwatering your lawn and landscape can lead to pests, diseases, and fungal infections.

  4. Discover water and money savings by scheduling a free irrigation evaluation with our Water Conservation and Efficiency team. You will:

    • Receive a personalized review of your water use.
    • Receive a seasonal water budget.
    • Learn how to set your irrigation controller and rain sensor properly.
    • Learn how to check your irrigation system for leaks.
  5. Check if you are in our reclaimed water service area – using reclaimed water for irrigation is cheaper than using potable water. 

If you decide an irrigation meter is right for you 

What you will be responsible for: 

  1. Submitting a completed application and paying the deposit and installation fees for a separate irrigation meter. 
    • Reclaimed water meter fees are lower than potable water meter fees.
  2. Connecting your on-site irrigation system to the irrigation meter.
  3. Installing a backflow prevention device on the new irrigation line.  

How your utility bill will change: 

  1. A new base charge for the irrigation meter will be added on your monthly utility bill. 
  2. The sewer max will be removed. 
  3. Your water consumption charges will continue to be based on how much water you use indoors and outdoors. Please keep in mind that your water consumption will increase if you overwater your lawn and landscape. 
  4. Wastewater charges will now be based on the water you use indoors only. 


Please e-mail the Water Development Services team at, or call (813) 274-7405.