City residents have dropped their water use by as much as 20 per cent since the March 2010 decision to install meters in all Kamloops homes.
City utility services manager Mike Firlotte said Friday even this summer, which has been hot and dry, the peak water use was 124 million litres a day. Last year it hit 117 million litres a day.
Several years ago, typical daily use hovered around 140 million litres in the summer, but sometimes rose higher than that. The City’s water-treatment plant capacity is 160 million litres a day.
Firlotte said water use has gone down and is remaining lower.
“This is the third year we’ve seen this trend. Even just the words ‘water meter’ . . . People are taking an interest in conserving water,” he said.
“We’re pumping less water, so there will be a definite savings in the power cost. That’s a huge expense.”
The City has already started its actual billing for the first parts of town that were metered: downtown, Valleyview, Dallas and Barnhartvale.
By Jan. 1, 2015, all homes will be billed for metered water use.
“Most people are going to find their bills are going to be about the same,” said Firlotte.
So far, 18,300 water meters have been installed in homes throughout Kamloops. City special projects manager Kristen Meersman said the in-home installations are slated to end in one week.
However, there are still some exterior meters to be finished up, which will take another month or so, and about 1,500 homeowners either have situations that make installing a meter difficult, or they haven’t been reached.
“We’ll be working in the next year to clean those up,” she said.
Homeowners in the first phase of meter installations are getting their second bills starting next week. The bills were delayed. The payment for utilities between April and June is due Sept. 30.
Anyone with questions about their water-meter bill payment can call 250-828-3438. Those with questions about meter readings can call public works at 250-828-3461.