Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)

Project Description

A black advanced water meter.The City water utility currently uses mechanical water meters and water usage information for each meter is obtained via drive-by automatic meter reading that occurs monthly. This project will replace all existing mechanical water meters with Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) technology incorporates hardware, software, communication tools and customer displays into a comprehensive system that measures, collects and analyzes water usage data. Replacing the City’s existing meters with AMI technology provides a cost-effective approach for enhancing customer service, improving water savings and providing near real-time water usage data to customers.

Current Status

On February 7, 2024, the City Council awarded a construction contract to Ferguson Waterworks to implement the AMI project. Ferguson Waterworks and its subcontractor Concord Utility Services will be responsible for replacing approximately 4,500 mechanical water meters with new ultrasonic water meters that can provide and remotely transmit near real-time water usage data.


The AMI project consists of three parts. First, the contractor will conduct a pre-installation audit to inspect the condition of existing water meter boxes and confirm water meter sizes and quantities. Water service to our customer will not be affected. The City asks customers to please trim any overgrown landscaping and remove objects that might be blocking access to the water meter box. After the audit, the contractor will procure new water meters and then proceed to replace the existing water meters. Customers will be given advance notice of the date of their scheduled water meter replacement. Once all water meters have been replaced, the City’s utility billing system will be updated and a new online portal will be activated so that customers can access, track and help reduce their water usage. All water meters will be replaced by late Fall 2024, and a new online account portal for customers will be activated by the end of 2024.

  • SUBSCRIBE to receive notifications here:

Frequently Asked Questions

Generally, meters will be replaced during standard working hours which are Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. You will receive advance notice to confirm the date of your scheduled replacement. You do not need to be home when your meter is being replaced. On your scheduled replacement day:

• A Concord Utility Services installer will knock on the door to inform occupants of the water shut-off immediately before starting the work.
• Water service for most residential properties will be temporarily shut off for about 30 minutes to replace the meter. Water for commercial services may be shut off for up to one hour.
• After the meter replacement is completed, a door hanger will be left to confirm the meter replacement was completed and the water service turned back on. The notice will also have contact information should you require any additional assistance.

You’ll receive a postcard or letter at your home or business informing you about the installation several weeks in advance.

Concord Utility Services is the contractor who will be performing the field work on this AMI project, including the pre-installation audit and water meter replacement. Concord will use their own vehicles which will have their company logo, and all field staff will have uniforms and identification badges. Concord personnel will never ask you for personal information or ask to enter your home or business.

The AMI project includes developing a customer portal to access your water usage information and to send you alerts of high usage and potential leaks. This platform will be available in December 2024. More detailed information will be provided when the system is ready for your use.

Installation of the AMI meter upgrade is being funded through current rates. After the upgrade, you might see an increase because the new meters record consumption more accurately than the old meters. As water meters age, they tend to run slower and may not measure all the water going through them. Many of the existing water meters in the City are at least 10-15 years old. Therefore, depending on the age and accuracy of your current meter, you may see an increase in your bill based on more accurate readings.

Yes. The cellular transmitters used for each meter are required to meet Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Radio Frequency limits. The signals used to transmit data from meters are much weaker than those from many everyday devices, such as cell phones, wireless internet routers, and baby monitors. In addition to being very low power, the meters transmit radio signals only four times per day, with each transmission lasting less than a second. The meters are also typically located near the street frontage of the property, in a concrete meter box. This combination of factors ensures the signals used are well below government limits with respect to human exposure to radio frequency energy. The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission conducted a study of radio emissions from AMI water meters as compared to other common household radio sources, and confirmed that advanced water meters emit significantly less radio frequency energy than common household items like cell phones, microwave ovens, cordless telephones, etc. Additional information on radio frequency safety is available on the FCC’s website.

Yes. The AMI system only transmits the water meter readings, the meter identification number and diagnostic information to verify the equipment is operating correctly. Personal customer information is not transmitted. For additional security, the data is encrypted and transmitted over a secure cellular network.

Your new water meter will include a cellular transmitter that will automatically send water usage data from your meter to the City’s billing system. Once your water meter is replaced, it will become part of the City’s Advanced Metering Infrastructure and your water meter will then be read remotely. The data will be stored in the City’s secured billing system and become available through a new online customer portal. The City will no longer need to drive around town each month to collect water meter data, and customers will be able to access near real-time information on their water usage.

Yes. The City evaluated AMI and found that the return on investment will save money for the City Water Utility over time, which in turn helps minimize water rates. AMI also improves customer service, and helps customers better understand their water use and costs so that they can take steps to improve water conservation efforts.

AMI benefits both customers and the City water utility. Customers can easily access their water consumption data which is updated four times per day, helping them address questions about their usage, detect potential leaks early, reduce surprise water bills and help reduce water use. The AMI system reduces operating costs for meter reading and billing and reduces the City’s carbon footprint since meters will be read remotely instead of by vehicle each month.

Project Funding

A logo for the California Department of Water ResourcesA logo for the Prop 1 Water BondFunding for the AMI project was included in the 2023 Water Rate Study adopted by Council on August 2, 2023. The cost to implement AMI has already been factored into current approved water rates. Also, funding for this project has been provided in part from the Water Quality, Supply, and Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2014 and through an agreement with the State Department of Water Resources.


On February 5, 2018, the City Council approved the 2018 Water Master Plan Update which included a detailed analysis of the City’s water system including supply reliability, well resilience, public safety and a cost-effective plan for renewal and replacement of vital infrastructure. One of the recommended projects was to replace the City’s mechanical water meters with Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) technology. The AMI project is included in the adopted Five-Year 2023-2028 Capital Improvement Program (included in the Fiscal Year 2023-2024 Adopted Budget) to implement this key project recommended in the 2018 Water Master Plan Update.

Close window