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Renton Completes Installation of Automated Water Meters

October 19, 2015

For more information contact:
Preeti Shridhar,
Deputy Public Affairs Administrator, 425-430-6569
Abdoul Gafour, Water Utility Engineering Manager, 425-430-7210

Estimated savings of $1.8 million from leaks detected and stopped

Renton, WA: The City of Renton Public Works department has completed the conversion of 17,900 water meters to an Automated Meter Reading (AMR) system. The conversion to the AMR system was completed in just 3.5 years instead of five years as originally anticipated.

AutomatedMeterReaderThe AMR system reduces meter reading costs and improves efficiency since staff will no longer have to drive-by and walk-through hundreds of miles of streets per month to read the meters, and meter misreads are eliminated. Customers are billed for actual water used during each month, rather than estimated usage. The system also sends alerts on high water consumption and allows staff to notify customers about potential leaks on their private service lines or interior building plumbing.

As of August 2015, the system detected 793 major leaks, with each leak over 35 gallons per hour, and 2,700 minor leaks, with each leak over 7 gallons per hour. In one instance, staff noticed that a customer had a large leak on an irrigation water service line that was wasting 18,00 cubic feet (about 135,000 gallons) of water every day. Thanks to the AMR the leak that would have cost the customer $30,000 in their monthly bill was detected and fixed. It is estimated that the savings from potential water loss that this new system has provided over the past 3.5 years is 87 million gallons.

The city has developed a customer service on-line tool that enables city water customers to view their real time water use. The daily water use graph will show a potential water leak if the meter registers unusually high water consumption or continuous consumption over a 24-hour period. For directions on using the on-line tool, please visit