Meters, Meter Reading and Meter Tampering

It is the property owner’s responsibility to maintain access to the meter pit (or inside meter–by appointment) and shut-off valve.  Accounts are subject to fees for failure to maintain safe passage, failure to allow meter access, meter tampering, and manual reading.  It is unlawful to turn water on, or to turn water off, or to tamper with meters and metering equipment without explicit permission from the District.  Opening your meter pit or otherwise moving (touching) your metering equipment can result in a meter tamper and a tamper fee will be assessed.  Meter tampering is reported by the equipment to the District and must be cleared or repaired.  Shut-off valves must remain uncovered and accessible at all times for emergencies and for District access.

Introducing Eye on Water – September 2016

Now Available — Beacon/Eye on Water transponders! These transponders utilize the Orion Smart meters already installed, but transmit data via cellular networks on a daily basis.  Customers have access to meter reads, usage and alerts through an on-line application called Eye on Water.  These were rolled out earlier during the year in a pilot program and are now available for purchase. For an application and further information please open policies-and-procedures-eye-on-water

Smart Meters 2013-2014

All District’s meters were converted to Orion “smart meters” in 2013 and 2014.  The meters have leak detection features and tamper detection features.  Smart meters have very high accuracy standards even at very low flows.  They are also have a data storage component allowing storage of hourly read data for about 90 days.  This feature is what allows a “usage profile” to be collected.

Meters are warrantied for accuracy up to 2.5 million gallons of water, according to American Water Works Association (AWWA) standards. 

Every Orion meter is tested prior to leaving the factory, and if it does not exceed the AWWA accuracy standards, it never leaves the factory.  Each meter is tested at three flow rates per AWWA standards.  The sales representative is able to look up each meter’s serial number and cross-reference it to its specific test results for a limited number of time after factory shipment.

Two District meters were tested by a Certified Tester and the sample results are here: Certified Test Example

To avoid unwanted wireless interference, the District selected meters that do not transmit continuously over a wireless network.  Instead, these meters only transmit a signal when they are queried or “interrogated” by our meter reading equipment.  The interrogation lasts for less than 5 seconds per month and occurs silently when the meter reading equipment comes close enough.

See below for detailed articles about the Orion metering system and a report about smart meters as used by utilities in general.

Orion Information

Warranty and Accuracy

Health and Smart Meters