1. What is a wastewater average? Wastewater averaging is a way for you to save money. Wastewater averaging takes place during the late fall / winter months and determines a cap on the volume of wastewater you will be billed for each month for the next year. You will be billed wastewater volume charges at the lower of your wastewater average or your water volume, whichever is lower.

  2. Why does the City use a wastewater average as the basis for my wastewater bill? Your water meter measures your monthly water use, but there is no meter on your wastewater line. Wastewater averaging provides a measure that is generally reflective of the amount of water that goes directly into the sanitary sewer system from your property.

  3. How do I know the specific dates my water usage will be monitored for my new wastewater average? Find a copy of your recent bill and use Austin Water’s Wastewater Averaging Period calculator.

  4. How is my wastewater average calculated? Wastewater averaging is calculated from mid-Nov. to mid-Mar. when most of the water goes directly into the sanitary sewer system versus being used for outdoor watering. To calculate your wastewater average you must have at least 60 consecutive days of water use with a minimum of 100 gallons used per billing period.

  5. Why is wastewater averaging done mid-November to mid-March? Usually outdoor watering is minimal during the late fall and winter months; therefore it is easier to estimate the actual amount of water that goes directly into the sanitary sewer system versus being used for outdoor watering.

  6. Why can’t everyone use the same months to calculate their wastewater average? Austin Water meter readers have over 900,000 customers divided into 20 different districts around town. Each of those districts has a distinct monthly “billing cycle” reflected by the “read date” on your water bill. The date that your water meter is read determines your wastewater averaging schedule.

  7. Can I choose different months to determine my wastewater average?  No, the months used to determine your wastewater average are determined by the dates of your billing cycles that occur during the established winter averaging period.

  8. How can I lower my wastewater bill? Conserving water during the wastewater averaging period will lower the volume of wastewater you will be billed for each month for the next year.

  9. Why do I pay more for wastewater than I do for my water?  The cost of providing wastewater services is higher than the cost of providing water services. After the water you use goes down the drain, or is flushed, it must be treated before it goes back into the Colorado River.

  10. I am a residential water/wastewater customer. How is my wastewater average calculated if I have one or more months of zero consumption during my designated wastewater averaging dates? If there is zero usage billed during one of the three months in the current averaging period, the month that billed zero usage is eliminated, and the remaining two months are used in the wastewater averaging calculation. If there is zero usage billed during two of the three months in the averaging period, you will receive a default wastewater average of 5,000 gallons.

  11. I am a commercial water/wastewater customer. How is my wastewater average calculated if I have one of more months of zero consumption during my designated wastewater averaging dates? If there is zero usage during one of the three months in the current averaging period, the month with zero usage is eliminated, and the remaining two months are used in the wastewater averaging calculation. If there is zero usage during two of the three months in the averaging period, your wastewater service will be based on actual water usage, until a wastewater average can be determined in the next wastewater averaging period. Commercial customers with irrigation meters bill wastewater at the same volume as their domestic water use.

  12. When does my new wastewater average go into effect?  Your new wastewater average will begin with your April or May bill, depending on your bill cycle.