How to Bypass a Water Meter with a Pipe?

How to bypass a water meter with a pipe? You need to install a pipe of the same diameter prior to the meter connection. Then, you can connect this pipe to the main line after the connection. And this is the simplest way to bypass a water meter.

Water meters are generally used to measure how much water is entering your home. And water meters play an important role in implementing a pay-per-use policy. But if it is difficult for you to cope with the increasing bills, bypassing the water meter can be a good hack.

I will show you the whole process of bypassing a water meter. Don’t miss it.

What Do You Need to Bypass a Water Meter?

Bypassing a water meter requires special tools to perform the task satisfactorily. Consider arranging the following tools that are required to bypass a water meter.

  •   Pipe wrench
  •   Socket wrench
  •   Bypass valve
  •   Pipe
  •   Connectors

Once you have these tools handy, let’s move on to the main process.

How to Bypass a Water Meter with a Pipe? Step-by-Step Guide

I have broken the process into several steps for your convenience. Follow them carefully.

Step 1: Turn All the Appliances Off

Before bypassing the water meter, you need to turn all appliances off. Make sure no fixtures are running.

Step 2: Locate the Water Meter

In this step, you need to find the water meter. It is probably installed underground and is covered with a drain cover. If you have the layout of the building, it will be easier to find the water meter.

Step 3: Turn the Supply Valve Off

There should be a supply valve before the water meter and the water meter strainer. The valve will have markings on it to turn it on or off. Rotate the valve handle to turn the valve off. It will cut off the water supply and make working on the line easier.

How to Bypass a Water Meter with a Pipe Step-by-Step Guide

Step 4: Install the Bypass Pipe

This step is the most critical. Make sure you make no mistake.

  •   Use a socket wrench to loosen the joint cover positioned between the supply valve and the water meter.
  •   Install a pipe of the same diameter as the supply line and tighten it properly.
  •   Then, loosen the joint after the water meter and connect the installed pipe to that joint.

Step 5: Turn On the Water Supply

Once the bypass pipe is installed correctly, you need to turn the supply valve on. Now, the water will have two ways to proceed. A portion of the water will go through the meter, which will be counted toward the total usage at the end of the month.

But the water running through the bypass line won’t be counted as it doesn’t go through the water meter.

Step 6: Cover the Water Meter

After the process is complete, you should carefully cover the water meter with the drain.

Now, before you rush into bypassing a water meter, check the following sections.

Is Bypassing a Water Meter with a Pipe Legal?

It depends on the specific situation. In some cases, utility companies can test water meters and it might take some time. As the water meters need to be tested in their assembly, water lines may need to be shut off during the tests.

But that will create a scarcity of water in your homes. In that case, a bypass line can help you get a continuous supply of water despite the testing. But if you do it on your own with the intention to tamper with the water meter reading, that will be illegal.

While installing a water meter, companies will instruct you not to tamper with the water meter. If you deliberately tamper with the meter, the utility company can disconnect the water supply. Moreover, tampering with the water meter can be a punishable offense.

Do Companies Know If I Bypass a Water Meter with a Pipe?

Possibly so. Analog meters may be a bit easier to bypass. But, modern digital meters are almost impossible to bypass because they come with various safety measures.

These meters have a specific algorithm to detect if the meter is tampered with. Companies can track the data from the meters and can sense any tampering remotely. They can even run physical inspections to detect if you have bypassed the meter.

Caution: Do It At Your Own Discretion!

I didn’t mean to encourage you to bypass a water meter with a pipe through this guide. My intention was to give you a complete idea of the process and how you can do it if needed. And I don’t suggest doing it without permission from the authorities.

Still, if you want to bypass a water meter for testing or other purposes, do it at your own discretion. I won’t bear any responsibility for the consequences you might face.

Tips for Perfect Bypassing

You can keep the following tips in mind to complete the process without any hassle.

  • Water lines can be tricky to work with if you don’t have any previous experience. So, trying to bypass a water meter shouldn’t be your first plumbing task.
  • Don’t touch any part of the line that isn’t instructed to do so. Otherwise, you might damage the water supply line and the repair can be costly.
  • Use materials and tools that are rated for this work.


Bypassing a water meter with a pipe is a tricky job. Besides being illegal, you can be at risk of ruining the water supply to your home. So, you need to have a clear idea of what you are going to do and how you are going to do it.

This guide on how to bypass a water meter with a pipe should help you overcome the hurdles in the process. Organize the necessary tools first so that you don’t have to face any issues during the work. And make your way through carefully so that you don’t damage anything.

Michael is the owner of Michael's Plumbing. He has experience over 15 years solved thousands of plumbing issues. 100% customer satisfaction made him best in this sector. Finally he decided to share his skills, experience and techniques through this PipesYard blog. Hopefully each and every post of this blog will be helpful for people seeking piping help.

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