Meter Replacement Frequently Asked Questions
May 26, 2015
1. Why is my water meter being replaced?
Over time, water meters become less accurate and can provide inaccurate water readings. By replacing meters, El Dorado Water Utilities will be able to bill more accurately and efficiently for water usage. In addition, the new system will include an automatic meter reading technology that will save labor time, prevent any recording errors, minimize wear and tear on vehicles, minimize the need for El Dorado Water Utilities to go on the private property of residents, and potentially allow water line leaks to be identified earlier by analysis of data collected.
2. Does this mean my bill will be increasing?
Not necessarily. In cases where rates remain consistent, the new meters will simply record consumption more accurately. In some cases, your bill may increase, but only if the current meter is underreporting usage. Presently the majority of residents are paying for the water they are actually using, while some residents are only paying for a portion of the water used. Regardless, El Dorado Water Utilities does not intend to make bills retroactive where under-billing has been noted. The new system will ensure fairness and equality for all the residents and businesses from this point forward.
3. When will this work be performed?
El Dorado Water Utilities is contracting with Utility Metering Solutions and the work will be started around June of this year. The entire project will take several months. In most cases the transition will be completely transparent and will not affect the residents. The work will be performed during normal working hours of 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM.
4. How will this affect my service?
Personnel from Utility Metering Solutions will come to your residence and replace your meter. The water meter will be checked to verify that water is presently not in use. If no water is being used the meter will be replaced. There will be interruption of service for approximately 30 minutes during the change.
5. How long will it take?
In most cases, it’s a simple procedure that will require about 30 minutes.
6. How do I know who is authorized to do the work?
El Dorado Water Utility has contracted with Utility Metering Solutions to conduct this service. They will be driving UTILITY METERING SOLUTIONS trucks, wearing bright yellow shirts identified by “UTILITY METERING SOLUTIONS Meter Replacement Team” and carrying appropriate identification.
7. Do they need to come inside my house?
8. Do I have to be present for the installation?
9. I’m on vacation or not available that day. Whom do I call?
In most cases it will not be necessary for anyone to be home. The majority of the work will take place near the street in the meter box. If you have any questions or concerns, contact El Dorado Water Utilities at 862-6451.
10. Why was I not able to turn on my water after the meter was installed?
In rare instances, the main cut-off valve to your home may be left off. This will occur when the Utility Metering Solutions installation team is not able to pressurize your home following the installation. The normal cause of this condition is when an inside spigot is opened during the installation and subsequently left open. The water is not turned back on to ensure a sink or bath tub does not overflow with the resident not home to turn the water off. In these cases, your water will be left off and a door hanger will be left on your door providing you a point of contact to call to have your water turned back on immediately.
11. Is there any Special Care or maintenance that I need to do to my new meter?
No, your new meter does not require any maintenance by the homeowner. As before, El Dorado Water Utilities will take care of all maintenance. However, please know that this new meter has transmitting technology on it that allows your meter to be read remotely.
12. Will wireless technology affect my health or privacy?
The new meters will not negatively affect health or privacy. In fact, overall health will be improved and privacy enhanced by replacing vehicles and manual visits to your home with environmentally clean radio communication. The wireless portions of the system will be operated according to Federal Communications Commission rules, and will not interfere with other radio frequencies in the area. The amount of exposure to radio waves decreases with the square of the distance from the radio source and the total transmission time is only 15 seconds per day.
13. I still have questions, where can I get additional information?
The El Dorado Water Utilities is working with Utility Metering Solutions to answer everyone’s questions as thoroughly as possible. If you need additional information, please call the El Dorado Water Utilities at 870-862-6451.