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8 May 2018
Te Awamutu and Kihikihi residents will receive their second mock water bill within the next few weeks.
Most mock bills will cover the three month period from late January to late April. Mock bills tell households how much water was used during that time and what it would have cost. The second mock bill will be the final one before real invoices are sent in October. Invoices will continue to be sent every quarter.
Waipa District Council water services manager Tony Hale said based on the second mock bills, more than 65% of households in Te Awamutu and Kihikihi will pay less with water meters that under the old, one-size-fits-all regime. That’s up from three months ago when mock bills suggested 53% of people would pay less than $101 for the quarter. Previously, all connected users in Waipa have paid $405.20 for the year, irrespective of how much water they used.
Most complex Te Awamutu and Kihikihi properties which share a meter with their neighbours were also financially better off with meters. Based on the second mock bill, 88% of complex properties would pay less what they had previously paid when the flat fee was in place; up from 85% three months ago.
Hale put the changes down to people fixing leaks in private pipes, seasonal differences and water-saving initiatives. People were now actively looking at ways to use less water, he said.
“There’s a big group of people who, with just small changes to their water use habits, could see a reduction in their bills.”
Hale said one of the best ways to save water was in the shower. Showers are the biggest water users in the home and on average use about 12 litres of water per minute. Some showers, particularly high pressure showers, use much more and that was money literally “down the drain”, he said.
A simple test is to set your shower to your normal heat and pressure and let it flow for one minute into a 10-litre bucket. If the bucket overflows in less than a minute, you are likely to be using more water than you need.
If people were concerned their water bill was unusually high, they should consider the Council’s free water saving service, Hale said. The service involves water advisor Chris Parker making household visits to check household applicances and advise ways to save water. If possible, water saving devices like flow restrictors, tap aerators and toilet flush restrictors could be fitted.
For water saving tips go to www.smartwater.org.nz