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Dedicated Irrigation Meter – Yes or No?

A dedicated irrigation meter, or lawn meter, is a water meter that only meters water used for outdoor watering, irrigation, pool fills or other uses that do not return water to the City’s wastewater system for treatment and disposal.

Should you have one?  The answer is maybe. It depends on how much water is used monthly at your home and how much of that water goes to irrigation.

Locations where monthly water use is equal to or less than average residential use – 8 ccf – are less likely to benefit from a lawn meter.  Locations with more than average monthly water use may benefit by being billed for actual rather than estimated outdoor water use.

Here are some things to consider:

Residential Accounts Where a Dedicated Irrigation Meter is Not Present

  • A lawn credit, or sewer max, is applied.
  • A lawn credit “caps” the amount of water to which monthly wastewater costs are billed by estimating the portion of total water use returning to the wastewater system.
  • A lawn credit is location specific and is based on past water use history at that site.
  • Locations that experience elevated levels of water use monthly generally will experience corresponding higher lawn credit.
  • Seasonal irrigation adjustments may assist is increasing water use efficiency and reductions to help keep lawn credits as low as possible.
  • Lawn credits are recalculated annually in January based on the billing history for the previous twenty-four months.

Residential Accounts Where a Dedicated Irrigation Meter Is Present

  • No lawn credit is applied.
  • Water billing is based on the total amount of water passing through the primary service meter and the lawn meter. Wastewater billing is based on the amount of water passing through the primary service meter.
  • Application and installation fees apply for new meter installations. See Water Connections and Service Fees for additional information.
  • Starting October 1, 2019, a base charge is in place for all potable water meters at a service location. For single-family residential locations, base charges initiate at $2 per meter in 2019 and increase by $1 annually through October 1, 2033.