Water Meters

Water Meter Replacement

What’s Happening?

We have big plans for your water meters, many of which are more than 30 years old and in need of replacement. The City has teamed up with Ferguson Enterprises and United Metering Solutions (UMS) to upgrade the water meters and the way we read them. This will give you the ability to track your water use in real time, potentially lowering your water bill (more information on the City's new water bill rate structure can be found here.)

The work starts July 2021 by replacing the reading device on the outside of your home or business. No appointments are necessary, as our contractor will be working on the outside to install the new device. All installers will have an ID badge, uniform, marked vehicle with City logo, and a completed background check.

What’s Next?

Beginning early 2022, the meter upgrade team will replace the actual water meter inside your home or business. Our partners will contact you at a later date to remind you of this project and to schedule a mutually convenient time for the meter upgrade team to do this work.

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Why is the City upgrading water meters?

The city of Sterling Heights has recently begun the process of upgrading all the water meters currently in service. Upon completion of this project, residents will be able to utilize new technology with the new Water-Smart software system to better monitor their own usage, potentially lowering their water bill. We have partnered with Utility Metering Solutions (UMS) and Ferguson Waterworks to complete this project.


How does the Meter Read Device compare to other common RF devices?Neptune RF frequency rangeWhen will I need to schedule my appointment?

Only upon receiving the letter from the City's contractor, United Meter Solutions (UMS). We cannot schedule your appointment ahead of time. Your UMS letter will provide instructions about how to schedule an appointment. Appointments must be scheduled within one week of receiving the letter to ensure the best date/time availability.

When will I receive my scheduling letter?

Water meters are scheduled to be replaced starting January 2022. Scheduling letters will be sent out by the City's contractor (UMS) one to two weeks prior to the water meter being replaced, along with a confirmation email or text. Another reminder text or email will be sent 24 hours prior to installation reminding residents of their scheduled appointments. 

Will Utility Metering Solutions (UMS) need access to my property?

Yes. UMS will need access to your property, as the meter and associated parts are both internally and externally located. Your UMS representative will arrive wearing a uniform and carrying official identification.

What is required of me during the scheduled appointment?

  • The area around the meter and service line must be clear and accessible.  
  • Plumbing valves before and after the water meter should be in good working order.  
  • An individual 18 years or older must be present.  
  • Pets must be secured.  

How long will it take?

The allotted time for the appointment is two hours. UMS will contact you closer to the scheduled time with further information, but most appointments can be completed within 60 minutes.

Will this cost me anything?

No. There is no cost associated with this upgrade. 

Will the new meter collect more data about me?

No. The new system will only do exactly what the current system does -- measure how much water is used at your property. No additional information is collected. The biggest changes will be the improved the new radio unit and the improved access you’ll have to information about your property’s water usage.

What's next?

As the City nears completion of the water meter and radio upgrade program, we are excited to announce that we will soon be launching the new Water-Smart software system. The new Water-Smart system will allow residents to better monitor water consumption through their smart phone, PC or tablet and will also allow residents to receive leak alerts, customize consumption parameters, forecast an upcoming bill and gather up-to-the-hour consumption history to pinpoint high usage events, potentially lowering their water bill. Look for the rollout of the new software coming this fall.

Who can I contact with questions?

For additional information, please contact the city of Sterling Heights DPW at 586-446-2440, option 8 or by emailing meterprogram@sterling-heights.net. Please note that representatives cannot schedule appointments, nor do they have information about the replacement schedule.

Additional Resources

Water Meter Product Sheet

Neptune ProCoder Product Sheet

R900 (Meter Read Device)