1. What makes the new meter different from the previous meter? The new meter will wirelessly deliver water usage information and other important service notifications (e.g. leak alerts) to the utility. With the previous meter, utility staff were required to drive to homes and businesses to physically view and collect meter readings.
2. When can I expect the meter to be upgraded? Meter upgrades began in late 2020 and the program is scheduled to be completed within the next three years.
3. What are the program benefits? • Convenience – In the future, customers will be able to access their usage information, pay their bill and receive other important alerts via the MyWaterSavvy customer portal. • Privacy – WSFC Utilities staff will no longer need to visit customer homes or businesses for routine meter reading activities. • Accuracy – Replacing aging infrastructure with up-to-date technology is part of our responsibility to customers. The increased accuracy of these new meters and timely communication of usage information will lead to more efficient billing processes. • Speed – WSFC Utilities will address customer concerns more quickly because the advanced metering system will provide real-time leak notifications and other service alerts.
4. Will I receive advanced notice of the meter upgrade? You’ll receive a letter notifying you of the meter audit and upgrade, followed by a reminder postcard.
5. Who will install the new meters? How can I identify them? An authorized representative from Concord Utility Services, a Sensus subcontractor, will inspect your meter box and ensure it is accessible. On a second visit, Concord meter technicians will upgrade your meter. All contractor employees will be recognizable by their vehicle, uniforms and identification badges.
6. How will I know if my meter was upgraded? During the second visit, meter technicians will attempt to notify customers before beginning work. Prior to their departure, they will leave behind a door hanger with information on the work performed.
7. How long does it take to upgrade the meter? The meter upgrade can take up to 30 minutes.
8. Will the installation of the new meter disrupt my water service? You will experience a brief interruption of water service during the meter upgrade. Please run faucets for 30 seconds to remove any air that may have accumulated in the line.
9. Will a meter reader still come to my home to read the meter? WSFC Utilities staff may periodically visit customer homes and businesses for routine maintenance activities. We anticipate meter reading will take place remotely with few exceptions.
10.Is there an added cost for the upgrade? All customers will receive a meter upgrade with the added benefits mentioned above at no additional cost. There will be no charge on your bill for this new meter.
11. Is the new meter safe? Yes, the meters we selected exceed health and safety standards set by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). In fact, the energy emitted by these new meters is much less than other common devices such as microwaves, TVs, cell phones, baby monitors, laptops and Wi-Fi routers. Customers can access more detailed information about energy exposure at:
12. Will I have access to my usage and billing information? Yes, we currently anticipate the launch of our MyWaterSavvy customer portal in 2021. This new tool includes features that provide daily usage information in addition to leak notifications and other important water service notifications.
13. Will my water bill increase? Possibly. WSFC Utilities is implementing this technology to improve operations and become more cost efficient for the long-term. Various factors will always affect customer billing (e.g. customer-side leaks, meter accuracy, irregular usage, weather, etc.). Due to the age of the old meters, the upgraded meters are likely to measure your water usage more accurately. All of the new meters will be tested to prior to installation to ensure that they register properly. After the launch of MyWaterSavvy, customers will have 24-7 access to an online portal where you can verify your usage and utilize other features (e.g. push-notifications and conservation tips) to make more informed water usage decisions. These upgraded meters will be able to provide increased information and awareness to ensure a better overall experience for both WSFC Utilities and our customers alike.
14. How will information from the meters be used? The security of customer information is a top priority at WSFC Utilities. These new meters record your usage information, encrypt it and wirelessly deliver it to our office. No personally identifiable customer information such as names or addresses is stored, nor is it accessible by the meters or meter reading software. The readings will be used for billing purposes and to analyze and improve system performance.
15. Will this affect meter reader jobs? WSFC Utilities has carefully researched and planned for the WaterSavvy program over the past decade. We are taking a staff reallocation approach with this program, rather than attrition through layoffs. These new meters can resolve many of the challenges that our meter reading staff currently faces to capture usage information. This will allow them to transition into value-added roles where they will have access to new tools and training for success. Additionally, because our meter services staff will be working remotely, there will be less risk of vehicular accidents and animal bites.
16. Who can I contact for further information about WaterSavvy? If you have additional questions about the WaterSavvy program and your new meter, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.