This summer Peoria resident Kenneth Klein received a knock on his door from a city utilities worker alerting him to a water line break he had no clue about.
A pipe in his backyard broke in mid-July, only for him to learn about it a month later, the leak amounting to 91,000 gallons to the tune of an extra $500 on his water bill.
Fortunately, the city approved a leak adjustment that resulted in a discount of $300, but Mr. Klein said, “I can’t fix it if I don’t know what’s broke.”
He explained that if he had a way to track his water usage on a daily basis the leak would have been discovered early on.
Residents are responsible for the water used on their property, but unfortunately the city does not offer a way for customers to track their water usage digitally on a daily basis.
Residences are equipped with a water meter that measures the volume of water delivered to a property, however most residents do not know how to read them. Instructions on how to read a water meter and detecting leaks can be found at smarthomewaterguide.org.
The city’s billing team reviews water use from the monthly reads and sends meter staff to double check the meter read when the usage is outside normal water use.
New meters that have been installed since a citywide change out began in 2012 are capable of storing hourly usage for the past 96 days. When there is a high use concern, a city worker goes out and pulls the water use history to help the customer as they investigate the source of their high use. Officials said this technology has been very useful in instances of high water use.
Philip Haldiman can be reached at 623-876-3697, email@example.com, or on Twitter @philiphaldiman.