California Imposes Stringent Water Restrictions as Severe Drought Persists –
Property Owners Install Water Metering to Avoid Expensive Surcharge Penalties
As the food basket of the United States, the California drought affects the entire country. Dairies, breweries, rice farming, salmon fisheries are strained by the lack of water from the latest 3-year long drought.
Flows.com, an online retailer that sells flow meters, services customers who abide to daily limits on water usage, such as a 130 gallon per day limit, regardless of how many people inhabit the property. In addition to costly overage surcharges, homeowners and property managers may find the water utility installing a 50% restrictor on their water mains if they exceed daily water limits.
Residential Water Metering
California water consumers understand that desperate times call for desperate measures and try to adhere to new regulations. However, they have no idea of knowing how many gallons of water they are using. More often than not, water utilities do not give consumers access to view their water meter – either the meter is inaccessible or in a box at the curb. “Frustrated residents try to be prudent with their water, hoping at the end of the month, they haven’t exceeded their limits. But we find most homeowners are not satisfied with this approach,” observes Michelle Farrell, Flows.com’s Customer Advocate.
To help residents facing “allocation-based rate structures” — or water rationing, Flows.com now offers the WM-NLC residential water meter by Assured Automation, an NSF-certified lead-free water meter that meets California’s latest lead free regulations. The water meter comes in sizes ranging from ½” to 2″, with ½”, ¾”, and 1″ being the most popular sizes for standard residential applications. The WM-NLC gives a highly accurate (+/- 1.5% within normal flow rates for each size) running total of the water being used. “A simple reading can save water users hassle and potential fines or restrictions,” Farrell reports.
Customers that prefer to reset their total measurement each month can combine the WM-NLC pulse output meter with a KAL-D06 LCD remote display for a simple, quick reading of the water usage since the last reset. The KAL-D06 LCD Remote Display is also recommended when the meter is installed in a location inconvenient for reading. The Pulse Output meter comes with 5′ of wire but that can be extended to up to 2000′ with additional Thermastat wire (not included). The KAL-D06 is not weatherproof, so without adding the weatherproof housing Flows.Com offers, it would have to be mounted indoors.
Commercial Water Metering
Commercial property owners with multiple tenants frequently encounter sudden, large water bills and cannot determine the responsible tenant. Placing a WM-NLC at each property allows the property owner to see who is using exactly how much water each month. Using property-based metering, the commercial property owner can now pass any cost penalty surcharges on to appropriate customers.
California towns that currently restrict daily water usage include Santa Monica, the Eastern Municipal Water District, covering Riverside to Hemet, Brooktrails, Cambria Community Services District, Corona, Montague, Rio Dell, Redwood Valley County Water District, Santa Cruz, St. Helena, Stinson Beach County Water District, and Willits.