Town Contractor, WMS, Is Replacing Home and Business Water Meters; You Will Get a Postcard

Town Contractor: WMS Water Management Services

The Town is replacing a majority of the water meters in Lexington. This replacement is free for the home or business owner. It is being paid for with Town funds.

See a video about the water meter project.

Replacement of "large" water meters (large-scale commercial properties) began in June 2021. "Small" water meters (residential and small-scale commercial properties) replacement began in October 2021 and is anticipated to continue through fall 2022.

Thielsch Engineering and Water Management Services (WMS)

Thielsch Engineering is running this project for the Town, and WMS, a subsidiary of Thielsch, will be doing the actual installation. 

water meter postcardPostcards to Schedule Appointments for the Meter Replacement

Thielsch Engineering sends postcards to each water meter property in an area of Town before they start work there. 

The postcards are marked with the Town of Lexington’s seal. The postcard gives you a phone number and web address for you to you schedule an appointment to have your water meter replaced. The scheduling process is very easy through both phone and online options. 

If you misplace your postcard, you can call 1-888-709-9944 Monday-Friday, 8AM-4PM, or schedule appointments online. Please do not contact the Town of Lexington to schedule your appointment.

See the full size postcard with readable text.

Water Meter Replacement Process

The actual process of replacing or retrofitting the meter will take approximately 45 minutes. WMS installers are well trained in the replacement of water meters.

There are 2 parts to the water meter - the actual meter, and the reader device that allows meter reader to check your usage without coming into your home.

The installer will need to enter some residents’ homes. It all depends on the age of the existing meter and the location of the existing reader device:

  • If the meter is 10 years or older, the technician will need to enter the house for a full meter replacement.
  • If the meter was installed 9 years ago or less, than the installer will need to enter the building only if the reader device is located inside the building. 

Learn about COVID-19 protocols for meter installation.

What are the benefits of replacing water meters?

Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) systems allow a community to automatically retrieve meter readings without having to enter the customer’s home or facility or access their property.

The two general categories of AMR systems widely used today are mobile and fixed-network. The term Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) is used to describe fixed-network AMR systems enabled with functionalities beyond meter reading for billing, such as acquisition of interval reads and event flags, such as leak and tamper identification.

We will be installing an AMI system, which provide the following benefits:

  • Improved meter reading efficiency, timely data collection for analysis, and improved read data consistency
  • Reducing the number of estimated bills.
  • Reducing administrative time and errors in entering meter read data.
  • Water conservation: the AMI system will detect potential leaks, allowing for the leak to be repaired faster and will save water
  • Meter readers do not have to enter the property to obtain meter readings.
  • More efficient meter reading, troubleshooting operations, and customer notifications.
  • Reduce customer inquiry call duration by providing better analytical tools and granular usage history. Information lets customer service representatives be better informed and helps customers understand their usage better.
  • Allow for a transition to quarterly or monthly billing. More frequent meter readings and bills will allow customers to better budget themselves and monitor their water use.
  • Significantly reduce abatements through efficient customer-side leak detection and proactive customer notification. Fixed networks allow for leaks to be flagged in days/weeks, instead of months, potentially preventing additional property damage and municipal water loss. 

Why are we replacing water meters?

There are a total of 14,451 active water meters exist in the Town’s system. The largest portion of the DPW’s metering infrastructure was installed between 1998 and 2002. As with any mechanical device, water meters are subject to wear and tear, and over time begin to lose their accuracy.

Instead of budgeting to test small meters, utilities typically budget to replace meters when they reach a specified age. The Department of Environmental Protection‘s (DEP) Guidelines and Policies for Public Water Systems states that the normal life expectancy of water meters ranges from 7 to 15 years. Approximately 45% of the Town's small water meters have been in service 15-years or longer.

The project involves replacing domestic and irrigation meters in service prior to 2010. These meters will be replaced with solid state meters, which do not depreciate in accuracy over time and therefore will provide great value in a replacement program.

Meters put in service since 2010 that have remaining useful life will be retrofitted with a new reading device.

How do I schedule an appointment? 

Once you've received a postcard in the mail,