Sioux Center Municipal Utilities is in the process of updating electric, natural gas, and water meters for local homes and businesses.
“The updated advanced meters will allow us to have more accuracy and efficiency in the way we read meters,” explained Sioux Center Utility Engineer Matt Van Schouwen. “When this update is complete, we will not need to have a meter reader stop at each home and business every month to read meters. It will be done automatically.”
Customers' utility use will continue to be measured the same way as with the old meters, and customers shouldn't see changes in their billing due to new meters unless their old meters were not accurately recording their usage.
Changes in customers' bills are more likely connected to temperature and weather changes or previous utility rate increases.
Advanced meters link with a communications network to remotely record utility use. The meters will also help Sioux Center Municipal Utilities quickly identify power outages and costly water leaks.
The updated meters will provide the option for Sioux Center Municipal Utilities to offer enhanced services to customers in the future. One feature being considered is a web-based portal with which customers could view their usage trends and be able to make immediate adjustments to their utility use to save money.
“This update will keep our meters’ technology current and it will set us up to offer services that will allow customers to have be more hands-on in understanding their utility use and conservation,” Van Schouwen said. “We’ve researched this update for several years, and we are ready to start rolling this out in Sioux Center this fall.”
The advanced meters are being provided by Sioux Center Municipal Utilities at no additional cost to customers.
Customers will receive a letter with additional contact information when it is time for them to schedule an appointment with the meter installer.