Are you tired of dealing with inaccurate water billing in your multi-unit or strata property? Look no further, as sub-metering systems are becoming the go-to solution for fair and accurate water usage measurement. But with so many options available, it can be overwhelming to find the perfect fit for your property. In this blog, we’ll take the guesswork out of the equation and guide you through the important factors to consider when choosing the best water sub-meter for your needs.
Safety is of the utmost importance, especially for products in contact with potable (drinking) water. WaterMark confirms a product is fit for purpose, appropriately authorised for use, and complies with relevant standards relating to quality, health and safety. The scheme involves independent certifying authorities and follows a five-year certification lifecycle, with annual product surveillance. WaterMark certification must be displayed on the product.
When it comes to using meters for billing purposes, accuracy is crucial. Any meter used for trade requires Pattern Approval by the NMI (National Measurement Institute). Regulations require that these products are Verified for accuracy upon arrival in Australia, so you can be sure that you (or your tenant) will be correctly invoiced.
Meters used to calculate the energy component of hot water do not currently require Pattern Approval. However, if your building has central hot water, it is advisable to ensure your hot water meters are Pattern Approved so that billing of both energy and water can be equitable.
All our cold and hot sub-meters are Pattern Approved. (NMI 14/3/37)
Most properties have a large boundary (master) meter, while sub-meters to measure the water supplied to each unit or Lot are generally smaller.
Your licensed plumber will recommend an appropriate water sub-meter for your application. Essentially, meters are sized according to the diameter of the pipework, and applicable standards then specify the associated fields of operation such as flow rate, pressure class and temperature.
With the introduction of WELS (Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards), flow requirements of our homes and workplaces have reduced considerably. Accordingly, Australian standards now allow for more size-appropriate sub-meters for these applications, some with specific benefits for those retrofitting existing buildings.
At Fair Water Meters, we have two flexible sub-meter options, depending on your plumbing infrastructure. Our one-of-a-kind ECO Valve sub-meter is for installation on concealed or spindle-type valves, and our ECO Inline sub-meter is ideal for installing onto exposed pipework or replacing old meters that cannot be remotely read.
When installing a sub-metering system in a multi-unit or strata property, there are several regulatory concerns to consider. In a unit property, sub-meter installation is typically the responsibility of the individual unit owner, and they will need to ensure that the installation is compliant with local plumbing and building codes. In a strata property, sub-meter installation may be the responsibility of the body corporate or owners corporation, and they will need to ensure that the installation is compliant with local plumbing and building codes as well as any strata bylaws. Additionally, there may be regulations regarding the accuracy and maintenance of the sub-meter, and the committee or strata manager will need to ensure that these regulations are being met. Check your state’s relevant regulations before installing (View Queensland’s guide here).
Fair Water Meters are required to be installed by a licensed plumber in accordance with AS/NZS 3500 and local government requirements. In addition, Fair Water Meters provides a state-specific Body Corporate Document Bundle with everything you need for your AGM/EGM.
When choosing a sub-metering system, you should also consider the features that are important to you. Fair Water Meters sub-meters come with advanced features including remote reading, data logging, and water leak detection. These features can be game-changers for multi-unit properties, as they can allow you to monitor and bill for water usage remotely and in real-time.
Consider the ease and cost of installation and long-term maintenance when choosing a sub-meter. Meters used for trade are required to be verified for accuracy or replaced every 8 years, and while some sub-meters are easy to install and maintain, others are more complex.
Our ECO sub-meters are designed to be simple and economical on both fronts. They can be easily installed, with no wiring or major plumbing works required. They’re compact, can be installed at any orientation and are impervious to turbulent flow. Unlike other meters that have to be removed at the end of each compliance period, the intelligent cartridge-style design lends itself to a simple, capsule exchange program. Because the base remains in place and only the measuring capsule is exchanged, pipework is not disturbed, and plumbing costs are minimal. Known costs, hassle-free and no surprises? They’re everything you’d expect from a considered German design.
Choosing the right water sub-meter for your multi-unit property is crucial for fair and accurate water usage measurement. When shopping for a sub-metering system, make sure to consider the accuracy, size, flow, temperature range, regulatory concerns, features, and installation and maintenance. At Fair Water Meters, we offer two flexible options, the ECO Valve and ECO Inline sub-meters, both designed to fit anywhere and come with advanced features including remote reading, data logging and water leak detection. Our sub-meters are German-engineered, easy to install and maintain. For more information on our sub-meters, contact us today and take the first step towards fair and accurate water billing for your property
“We own a flat in an older building and rent it out. Every owner is responsible for paying a portion of the water bill. It was surprising to find out that another unit, which was rented out, was actually operating a commercial laundry! We swapped to Fair Water Meters and our tenant is so grateful … we passed on the savings by reducing his rent as it was the right thing to do.”
“Sharing the bill when dining out can be fraught with danger. Sharing your water bill with your fellow apartment residents can be positively expensive! After switching to Fair Water Meters we discovered that one our fellow residents was running a day spa business from their apartment and we were subsidising them!”.
“We had a slow leak we didn’t know about in one of our units. It must have been there for years until Fair Water Meters were installed – their smart meters detected the leak in the first month and they texted us with the alert. Already they’re saving us money.”