“Thank you to all residents and businesses for their support in the Water Meter Replacement Program so far,” says Mayor John Taylor. “This project is another step forward in our goal to improve municipal services to the community. With a new water meter installed, the Town will be able to conduct remote water meter readings, provide improved water meter reading accuracy and provide the foundation for future enhancements such as leak detection and water usage tracking. Once you are eligible for a water meter upgrade, please book an appointment as soon as possible. Your cooperation is integral to the continued success of the project.”
As part of this project, the Town took this opportunity to trial a pilot Leak Detection Program (LDP) for newly replaced water meters. This pilot project, which has not been fully implemented to all new water meters yet, allows the Town to monitor water usage data provided by the new water meters and provides alerts if there are inconsistencies to the usage (i.e. continuous flow of water use). Here are some successes since the testing of the pilot Leak Detection Program:
- As of February 2023, the pilot LDP has helped save 56,000 cubic meters of water which is equal to 345,000 baths.
- A total of 80 per cent of potential leaks were fixed by the property owner once they aware of the issue.
- A typical contact with the property owner can result in approximately $400 in savings once the issue is resolved by the property owner.
- Properties notified through LDP typically resolve a leak 115 days faster, often in about five days.
Two notable examples of the Pilot Leak Detection Program helping property owners:
- A resident in Newmarket had a leak on their property which was costing them at least $40 a week. After their water meter was replaced, the Town detected an unusual use of water and notified the property owner. The property owner was unaware of the leak and was able to find and fix the leak within three days.
- A vacant property had its water meter replaced as part of the program in 2022. In 2023, the Town identified that the property had sprung a leak that was costing the property owner at least $250 per week. Had the leak continued undetected, it would have resulted in a high water bill and potential damages to the property.
Property owners that suspect a leak in their property are encouraged to identify the source and fix it as soon as possible to prevent receiving a high water bill. Reminder, it is the property owners’ responsibility for the infrastructure on their property and the water that is used, regardless of if it is a result of a leak.
For more information on the Water Meter Replacement Program, visit newmarket.ca/watermeters.
Newmarket’s Water Meter Replacement Program began in 2021 and initially focused on upgrading 7,000 water meters that were less than 10 years old. In 2022, the Town began its process in replacing 18,000 water meters that had reached the end of its lifecycle.
Some benefits of the Water Meter Replacement Program include:
- The ability for the Town to conduct remote water meter readings. No physical visits will be required to obtain water meter readings which will result saved time and improved efficiency.
- Improved water meter reading accuracy. If the resident’s water meter was previously over-registering or under-registering, the new water meter will now measure the water usage accurately.
- The future ability for the Town to identify leaks and losses within the system before they become a larger issue.
- The future ability for residents to be able to track water usage through an online portal.
Water meter replacements are being conducted on an area-by-area basis. Property owners that receive a letter of eligibility are encouraged to book an appointment with the Town as soon as possible. Appointments can be booked online at newmaket.ca/watermeters by selecting the specific ‘zone’ that is indicated on the eligibility letter.
An adult 18+ is required to be at home during the appointment and the replacement process involves installing a reader outside the home and connecting it to the water meter inside the home. Please ensure the water meter is not blocked during the installation process.
Once complete, the new water meter will transmit (through a wireless transmitter normally located on the outside wall of your house), water data usage using radio frequency (RF) electromagnetic fields (EMF) signals to NT Power to accurately measure water consumption. These transmitters have no known health risks and the RF transmitted (once every four hours, for a total of six transmission per day) is lower than commonly used devices like a baby monitor or a cordless phone.