(FOX5)

(FOX5)

NORTH LAS VEGAS – North Las Vegas residents will have a chance to be smarter about their water usage.

On November 5, the city approved a $19.5 million project to replace 90,000 household water meters with smart water meters.

“You'll be able to identify as much as a toilet leak by looking online at your account," said North Las Vegas Utilities Director Randy DeVaul.

DeVaul says the city decided to make a switch after a 2004 automated system required battery replacement every 10 years.

"We were in a position where we were replacing up to 6 to 8 thousand of those batteries per year,” said DeVaul.

The cost to replace the batteries would have cost $1 million. Instead, the city opted to replace old water meters with smart water meters. The meters will last 20 years and provide homeowners with usage data at their fingertips and allow homeowners to spot leaks faster.

"Alarms will be set and they will be set to send text messages or emails to customers that want them that will enable them to say hey you're using more water than you normally use, you should check for a leak," said DeVaul.

The new system will also help the city reduce the amount of water that goes unbilled. Devaul said eight percent of the water in North Las Vegas is not accounted for due to leaks or faulty meters.

Installation of the new meters will begin in early 2019 but city officials predict it could take as long as two years to replace every meter in the city.

“It's going to help us reduce our unaccounted for water, help us engage our customers in the importance of water conservation and being able to manage their own usage," said DeVaul.

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