The city of Decatur will start replacing or upgrading 31,400 water meters starting in February for residential, commercial and residential water customers. The replacement project is expected to be completed by mid 2015.
Home owners will receive a post card followed by a letter notifying them of the meter replacement. They can then call an "800" number to make an appointment to have their meter replaced. Water will be shut off while the meters are changed. In most cases the entire process lasts 30 to 45 minutes.
Meter readers will no longer be required with the new meters. The meters send out a signal that is eventually received by the city water department to calculate your bill.
There is no cost to water customers in most cases. The cost of the project to the city is $14.5 million. The city estimates it will save $21.3 million over the next 17 years. In effect, the project will pay for itself.
Some water meters are located on the outside of homes. Most are in basements or crawl spaces.