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How can we all work together to reduce water leaks, eliminate damage to pipes, and discourage bees from establishing colonies inside water meter boxes? By controlling landscape plantings and irrigation.

Most of us have read articles or seen news stories about the importance of honeybees to our food chain and economy. People generally don’t go out of their way to annoy bees but if a beehive is disturbed, things can become dangerous very quickly. Understanding what makes an ideal location for bees to establish a hive, then taking steps to prevent those conditions, could eliminate the need to exterminate established hives.

Unfortunately, some water meter boxes are the perfect habitat to establish a hive. What can you do to discourage bees from making a home in your box?

  1. If you have landscape plants near your meter box, consider removing them or trimming them so that the plants don’t provide a cool, shady home.
  2. Don’t allow irrigation lines near a water meter box as moisture will attract bees and other insects and animals.
  3. If you become aware of a leak near your meter, contact us right away. If the leak is on our side of the meter repairs will be made. If the leak is on the customer’s side of the meter, the homeowner will be notified that repairs need to be made.

Bees are not the only reason to keep landscape plantings and trees away from meter boxes. If a small leak develops and goes unnoticed for a period of time, plant roots will naturally seek out the source of water. These roots can cause a great deal of damage to pipes and fittings which could interrupt your water service and may necessitate an emergency call to a plumber to repair the damage.

Although landscape plantings improve the appearance of a yard, please think carefully before placing them near utility boxes. If you have had recurrent beehives in your meter box, consider removing bushes near the meter box to make a less hospitable location.

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