Advanced metering system can detect water leaks early, save on utility bills

February 27, 2018

The City of Bartlesville implemented an advanced water metering system a few years ago that could help residents save money on their utility bills, thanks to the system’s early leak detection abilities.

In 2014, the City completed the installation of an Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) for all local water meters. This AMI system provides the Water Utilities Department with the ability to view hourly water usage on any water meter rather than monthly usage, which is what was available with the previous system.

“Since the implementation of the AMI, the City has come a long way in providing our customers with critical information for potential leaks,” said Water Utilities Director Terry Lauritsen. “Our leak detection technology is constantly monitoring each water meter, looking for potential issues shown by high consumption or continuous flows. If one is detected, the system will provide an alert.”

Lauritsen said staff filters and analyzes the alerts daily and reaches out to those customers by phone.

“Once contacted, staff will explain the water usage that triggered the alert and guide the customer through potential items that may be contributing to this consumption,” he said.

It is important that customers keep their contact information current on their utility accounts to ensure timely notifications, Lauritsen said.

Common problems that could result in higher water usage include:

  • A hose that has been left running
  • A dripping faucet — particularly common during cold weather
  • A toilet running or a pool filling
  • An irrigation system stuck “on” or running in the manual mode
  • Water pooling in the yard

Once the customer has determined they have a leak, they may consider contacting a professional for assistance, Lauritsen said.

“Prompt attention to potential leaks can save our utility customers from costly water damages,” he said. “Once the leak has been identified and addressed, customers can contact the Water Utilities Department to make sure their usage has returned to normal for their household.”

For more information, contact the Water Utilities Department at 918-338-4104.

Photo: The triangle on this leak indicator spins when there is flow going through the meter. When a problem is detected, Water Utilities Department staff asks customers to look at this triangle when all the water is off in the house to see if it is turning as an indicator that water is moving through the meter.