Wisconsin village switches to smart meters


The team worked with Sensus distributor HD Supply Waterworks to replace the Village’s 258 installed water meters with Sensus OMNI and iPERL water meters. They followed this with a test-batch upgrade to Sensus iConA and Elster A3 ALPHA electricity meters before a full replacement of more than 1,100 meters. Finally, Gresham Water Utilities (GWU) deployed the Sensus FlexNet communication network to ensure data was transmitted securely and accurately. Using the system, GMU’s staff could monitor and report issues to customers in near real time. [Washington city upgrades water infrastructure with Sensus tech]

According to a release, the GWU team recognised the need to upgrade the village’s infrastructure and turned to Sensus, a Xylem brand, after determining that the Sensus AMI solution possessed all the capabilities needed to meet its goals.

“Our meters are the cash register for our utility,” said Brian Carroll, utility manager, Gresham Water Utilities (GMU). “They tell us how much we need to bill our customers, so we need them to be as accurate as possible to identify any potential issues and save our customers from unnecessary costs.”

“You’ve got hour-by-hour, minute-by-minute data, so when you go to the customer, you’re talking to them with real data instead of guessing at the issue,” added Carroll.

Improving meter read accuracy with ‘smarts’

For technicians in the village, heading out to manually retrieve data from more than 1,000 installed water and electricity meters was arduous and time-consuming. Additionally, the village’s metering system had become outdated, with aging equipment that made it difficult to identify issues such as water leaks and abnormal power usage in a timely manner.

“We replaced our inaccurate and aged meters so we lowered our operational costs in both water and electric. [Xylem eyes Sensus in $1.7bn deal]

“With the new meters, we have a better understanding of our customers’ actual usage and can offer new rates tied to their consumption. There are all kinds of savings that come with the system,” concluded Carroll.