Water Meter Replacement

October 27th Update:

New water meters have been supplied with insulation to help protect against inclement weather.

Follow these steps to help protect the water meter:

  1. We are asking that residents LEAVE 'CITY INSTALLED' INSULATION IN THEIR METER BOX YEAR-ROUND. See pictures to the right for examples of what the insulation will look like. (Pink fiberglass in a blue bag)
  2. IF YOU HAVE CONCERNS ABOUT THE PROTECTION OF THE METER DURING INCLEMENT WEATHER, PLEASE CONTACT THE HERMISTON WATER DEPARTMENT AT 541-567-5521.

WATER METER REPLACEMENT PROJECT

The City of Hermiston is undergoing a major change in the way that we read customers’ water meters, as well as the way that we provide useful usage information to customers. This project will ultimately replace every water meter in the city by the end of 2017, with most of the work targeted to be completed between July and the end of October.

This project is ultimately paid for through the rates paid by customers, but will create a number of major benefits to customers. The new system will greatly reduce the amount of labor needed for the City to physically read each meter in the City; which means we will be able to re-allocate those employees to doing the other important work of maintaining our overall system. Also, the new system will provide customers with the ability to track their usage in a much more detailed manner by creating an online account; which will allow customers to more easily control, and possibly lower, their water bills through more efficient management of their water usage.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • When will my meter be replaced?
    • It varies to when each meter will be replaced, but a quick answer is, most if not all meters should be replaced by the end of October this year. The meter replacement process is intricate as it involves all meters in the City being replaced within just a few months. It contains a high level of coordination to ensure a smooth transition & to minimize billing issues. National Meter And Automation (NMAA) is working with the City’s utility billing cycles, so there will be times where they are working in your area of town, then switch to a different part of town, likely due to meter reading in your area that could cause interference with billing.  NMAA will coordinate to return to your area once meter reading has occurred for that area. In any case, ALL meter or components of the meter will be replaced before the project is complete .
  • I saw NMAA, the contractor, at my meter box and now my meter box has a hole in it, why?
    • This is normal and is part of the meter replacement process
      • As part of the meter replacement process, most meter boxes will need a hole cut in the top where part of the new meter system will be installed & the hole will be filled. There is a crew that is cutting the holes, then a separate crew will be by later to install the meter system & fill the hole.
      • They may use a large drill or a plasma cutter/welder to make the hole in the lid, this is normal.
  • The meter company worked in the meter box at my residence/business & now there is a round gray thing on the top of my meter box, why?
    • This is normal & most all meter boxes will have this on the top of the meter box when the project is complete. This is part of the new meter system.
  • I saw them (NMAA) at my meter box with what looked like a ‘vacuum’ truck, why?
    • To make the process of meter installation more efficient & minimize dirt or debris getting into the meter, NMAA is assessing each meter box/pit & vacuuming out those that could pose an issue.
  • Why wasn’t my meter replaced?
    • Your meter or components of the meter will be replaced before the project is complete by either City staff or National Meter And Association (NMAA), as this is a City-wide program. There are several reasons it may not have been replaced yet, even if your neighbor’s was. Below are the most common reasons: 
      • Before the meter is replaced, GPS coordinates are taken for every meter. The coordinates that originally were taken for your meter may have an anomaly & needs confirmed before the meter gets replaced.
      • The meter pit/box at your address is on a list to be vacuumed out before NMAA replaces the meter, this is to minimize dirt or debris from entering the meter during installation.
      • Your meter is on a separate list for component replacement that will make it compatible with the new system.
      • Your meter is deep & it will be raised, it will be fitted with a ‘riser’ to make the meter more accessible, before the meter is replaced.
      • Your meter was showing moving/flowing water & contractor didn’t get an answer when they knocked on the door, as a courtesy, they aren’t turning off the water in these situations.  They will compile a list & return at a later date/time to replace the meter.
      • Your meter couldn’t be located/found by NMAA & will revisit with more information to find it.  Some meters are difficult to find for numerous reasons, in the case they can’t find the meter at your residence within a very short amount of time, it will be added to a list & City staff will assist in locating them.
      • NMAA is working with the City & their current meter reading process. With this, NMAA will be jumping to different sections/sets within the City rather than completing a whole ‘set’ at a time, then returning to sets they jumped from to continue. This will minimize billing issues.
  • I saw them (NMAA) putting a blue garbage bag in the meter box after they replaced the meter, what’s that for?
    • They installed insulation over the meter, to protect it from freezing over the coming winters. This is part of the meter replacement program & it should be left in year round. Customers will no longer need to insulate or ‘pack’ their water meter box for the winter & remove it in the spring. The insulation installed, will be adequate for protection & should be left in place.

 

NMAA is working diligently to complete the project promptly. If you are able to keep your meter box area unobstructed it will be extremely helpful in the process of this meter change out program. Thank you for your assistance & patience throughout the project.

Background Information

Meter Replacement Background (PDF)

August 11th Update

NMAA (National Meter and Automation) has been working within 'Set 3' for the last few weeks. NMAA transitioned to 'Set 1' earlier this week.  Rather than working through a full ‘set’ , NMAA will work in a set as long as possible, but switch when it will cross paths with the City’s meter reading schedule.  This will help minimize billing & data anomalies.  As both NMAA & the City want this to be as smooth of a transition as possible. Click HERE to view the map.

Please call City Hall at 541-567-5521 if you have further questions.

July 24th Update

National Meter and Automation (NMAA) has started on Hermiston's water meter replacement project. 

NMAA personnel will begin by cleaning debris out of meter boxes over the next couple of weeks in the Southwest area of town in preparation for meter replacements.  Many meter lids/tops will be modified & some may receive a replacement box top to accommodate a component of the meter.

NMAA will also be installing insulation in the meter box, providing protection of the new equipment in cold weather. This eliminates customers needing to pack insulation prior to winter & removing it in the spring. 

It will be important the new insulation remain in its original location year-round, to protect meters from winter freezing. Customers will no longer be asked to remove insulation in the spring.

Once a meter has been replaced, customers will receive a notice to flush either an outside faucet or a tub faucet for the first water drawn (one to two minutes is typically sufficient), to expel any air or debris, then other fixtures & appliances may be used. Again, at no time will the contractor need access into your home.

Contractors are currently working within ‘Set 3’ on the water meter reading map. Click HERE to view the map.

Please call City Hall at 541-567-5521 if you have further questions.


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