Thames Water installs 100,000th smart meter

  • ‘State of the art’ 100,000th meter installed in Sidcup, south-east London, on Wednesday
  • Over 4,000 leaks on customer pipes found as a result of the programme
  • arried out more than 16,000 water, energy and money saving customer home visits

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Thames Water, the first UK water company to roll-out smart meters using state-of-the-art wireless technology, this week installed its landmark 100,000th meter in the London Borough of Bexley.

The water company plans to meter all customers where possible by 2030, and with more than 4,200 leaks detected on customer pipes so far, the ambitious programme has already saved an estimated 930,000 litres of water per day across London. This is the equivalent to almost 10,000 baths.

Supporting the programme’s water-saving success is the award-winning free “smarter home visit” offered by the company to its customers receiving a smart meter. A specialist team check how water efficient a house is and install water-saving gadgets. Around 16,000 visits have been carried out to date, with over 40,000 devices, including flow regulating shower heads and dual flush toilet adapters, installed since April and an estimated two million litres of water saved by the home visits alone.

Danny Leamon, Thames Water’s head of metering, said: “Our metering programme continues to gain momentum and we’re really pleased to have achieved this landmark figure.

“Installing water meters is important, not just because they give our customers greater control over their water use, but also for the environment, as climate change and population put ever increasing pressure on our water resources. We also believe meters are the fairest way to pay because you pay for what you use, value what you pay for, and so tend to use water more efficiently.”

The smart meters give residents access to water use data, online or by phone, allowing them to see how efficient their home is and track how simple water-saving efforts – like four-minute showers or turning the tap off while brushing your teeth – are having an impact on their bill.

Michelle Campion, of Holbeach Gardens, Sidcup, whose family received the 100,000th meter, said: “There are three of us in this house and we’re pretty conservative anyway when it comes to water use but, even so, I’m hoping that it’s going to save us money and allow us to keep an eye on our consumption.”

The new technology means there’ll be no need for householders to send meter readings to the water company, and the usage data reported by the smart meters will also allow Thames Water teams to discover where there are leaks on a customer’s personal pipe, and fix them for free, helping to stop water being wasted.

Households will have two years to understand and reduce their usage before they are moved on to a metered bill, unless they choose to switch early and cash in on any savings.