Meter Upgrades

Why are Evansville Water and Sewer Utility customers’ meters being upgraded?

The meter upgrade project is a massive and important project to move the city forward with accurate, modernized and wireless meter reading infrastructure. That infrastructure is dependent upon new meters, which must be installed on our customers’ properties. Before the Utility can replace a meter, we must inspect the existing meters and the infrastructure that connects to them. The new system will provide real-time water usage information, which will be beneficial for customers.

If inspection of my meter uncovered a needed repair, what do I do?

The Utility is conducting an independent re-inspection to validate, document in more detail and photograph the issues found on your property, and determine if the meter upgrade can be accomplished without any repairs to your water lines or pit. Once the re-inspection is complete, we will contact property owners to present findings and determine next steps based on the severity of the issue.

If the communication you received noted removal of debris, minor repairs or issues involving leaks, we encourage you – if it’s within your means – to make the noted repairs as soon as you are able. This is particularly the case when inspections identified a leak. We want to help you avoid expenses related to leaks that may be costing you in higher water and sewer bills and could create larger, more expensive issues if the meter freezes during cold months.

If your water meter is covered or blocked, please remove whatever is blocking or covering the meter lid. There is a transmitter mounted to the top of the meter, and the transmitter will not work if the lid is covered or blocked.

If you have questions about communication you have received from the Utility or about next steps with your property, please contact the Utility’s customer service – (812) 436-7846 or EWSUcustomerservice@ewsu.com 

How quickly should repairs be made?

The timing of when repairs are made is up to you unless your water meter is covered or blocked, or if the meter pit is broken, prohibiting meter reading. Please address those issues in a timely manner.

If the notice you received noted removal of debris, minor repairs or issues involving leaks, we encourage you – if it’s within your means – to make the noted repairs as soon as you are able. This is particularly the case when inspections identified a leak. We want to help you avoid expenses related to leaks that may be costing you in higher water and sewer bills and could create larger, more expensive issues if the meter freezes during cold months.

Will my water be shut off if I do not make the repairs?

Please understand, the Utility will not turn off your water if you received a notice from us related to a needed repair on your property. We will work with you if you have any questions or concerns.

The exception regarding water shut-off would be for customers whose leaks were found in the water line running between the Utility’s shut-off valve (called a curb stop) and the connection to the water meter. (See illustration in Water Customer Rights and Responsibilities brochure.) This type of leak is causing unused, unmetered water loss. In these cases, the Utility's meter department will send customers a separate letter.

Can the Utility tell me how much my repair will cost?

The Utility is not in a position to quote the cost of repairs to a customer. Those estimates would need to be supplied by a licensed plumber. Provided below are resources on locating licensed plumbers in our area.

Southwestern Indiana Builders Association
Indiana Online Licensing

If I am unable to pay for my water meter repairs, what should I do?

EWSU has partnered with Community Action Program of Evansville, Inc. (CAPE), and Johnson Controls to offer the Water Meter Pit Repair Program. Eligible low-income customers who have been informed of needed water meter pit-related repairs by the Utility may contact Gale Brocksmith at the Evansville CAPE office at (812) 492-3941 for more information and qualification requirements.

CAPE’s program includes inspection and verification by CAPE staff of water meter pit-related repairs, obtainment of three contractor bids and contractor selection. CAPE will then provide post-repair inspection and will pay the contractor if the work was satisfactory. If not, CAPE will work with the contractor to ensure the repairs are acceptable.

CAPE cannot cover the cost of repairs and expenses that have already been incurred prior to applying for the program.

Why isn't the Utility paying for my repairs?

The graphic below shows the customer’s responsibility related to the water line. Legally, public funds cannot be used for private property repairs. If you have questions about your customer rights and responsibilities, please refer to the brochure that was mailed to you. You can also request a copy from the Utility’s customer service department.

Meter Upgrades

Will insurance cover the cost of my repairs?

Protection of your home or building and its contents should always involve insurance coverage. We encourage you to review your policy(s) and speak with your insurance representative. Don’t wait until your property sustains damage to find out if you have coverage.

Should I contact the Utility once my repairs are made?

Yes. If you have already made repairs to the issue identified, please contact the Utility’s customer service – (812) 436-7846 or EWSUcustomerservice@ewsu.com – to report action has been taken so it can be documented and appropriate next steps can be made.

Must I sign and submit the Waiver of Liability Form I received?

You do not need to sign the Waiver of Liability Form that was included with the original repair notification letter. If you have already signed and returned a Waiver of Liability Form to the Utility, we will disregard the Waiver, and the Utility’s contractor will not replace the Utility’s water meter if there is a risk of damage to your water lines or meter pit.

The Utility will conduct an independent re-inspection of previously reported repairs to validate, document in more detail and photograph the issues found. In some cases, it may be possible to make needed meter changes without any plumbing repairs. Once the re-inspection is complete, we will contact property owners to present findings and determine next steps.

What’s the status of the meter upgrade project?

The Utility has inspected meters on about 30,000 properties – or nearly half of those city-wide – and will continue inspection through late summer 2015. The Utility has secured resources for re-inspection of properties with needed repairs and has begun re-inspection.