The Meter Division coordinates water meter reading and billing for Evanston’s 14,500 retail water and sewer customers. This division works with the Collector’s Office on processing of water/sewer bill payments and cross connection control fees. Meter Division also coordinates with the Distribution Division to manage water service shutoff/restoration, annual testing of large water meters for accuracy, and replacement of damaged and obsolete residential water meters. In 2013-2014, the Meter Division managed Evanston’s migration to an Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) system, which has improved accuracy and efficiency of water metering and billing processes. The AMI system also generates automated hourly meter reads and leak alerts for customers, to help reduce water losses in Evanston.
Evanston's State Of The Art Meter Reading System
The City of Evanston has approximately 14,500 metered water accounts. Water meter reading and water use management for these accounts is administered through the AMI system described above. Here's how it works:
- A Meter Information Unit (MIU) is attached to every water meter in Evanston. The MIU takes a meter reading once an hour and stores these readings for a full day. Each MIU broadcasts the readings once a day using a wireless transmitter.
- The Data Collector Unit (DCU) receives the meter readings from the MIUs. Evanston currently has 6 DCUs located on various buildings throughout the community. Each DCU sends its meter reading information to the Network Control System at the Water Treatment Plant on a daily basis.
- The Network Control System supports customer service and system management activities. It transfers the meter readings to the billing system to generate bi-monthly water and sewer bills for Evanston customers.
- The Network Control System monitors fluctuations in water usage, and sends leak alerts to the network administrator if a customer’s real-time meter readings are significantly higher than historical usage trends.
- The AMI system includes an online portal where Evanston customers can monitor their water usage, compare usage trends under various weather conditions, and set up leak alerts of their own.
If you should receive a water bill that reflects an estimated meter reading, please contact the Meter Division as soon as possible either by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or phone the Meter Division at 311. We will want to schedule an appointment to repair the MIU on your meter as soon as possible. Estimated reads are very rarely accurate and can result in extremely high water/sewer bills when an actual reading is obtained later.