During this time of drought, conserving water is key to keeping our usage within our means. In addition to following drought restrictions, residents are strongly encouraged to practice voluntary conservation as much as possible.
Knowing how much water you’re using is a great first step to using less of it. The City of Victoria helps take the guesswork out of water conservation with WaterWise, a free water monitoring service that’s available to all City water customers. WaterWise is a simple, stress-free way to take control of your water usage and avoid surprises.
WaterWise works by measuring how much water is flowing through your meter. You can keep track of your usage through the WaterWise online portal and set up email alerts for any sudden increase in water flow.
These sudden spikes may point to a hidden problem, such as a toilet hangup or an underground leak, that could waste a lot of water and money if it goes unnoticed. The Utility Billing Office often gets calls from confused residents who’ve been caught off guard by a high water bill. The culprit is usually a simple problem that could have been caught by WaterWise’s alert system.
These hidden water-wasters highlight the fact that being responsible with your water usage is about more than just following drought restrictions. We are currently requiring residents to repair leaks within 15 days of being told to do so, but an invisible leak can send plenty of water straight into the ground before the resident or the City knows about it.
When you sign up for WaterWise, you’ll be able to detect this kind of waste before it shows up on your water bill. You can also arrange to receive alerts if your usage goes above a certain threshold during a fixed period of time, which is great if you’re going on vacation.
The WaterWise online portal also lets you compare your day-to-day or month-to-month water usage, which can help you set conservation goals. You can even view information about local weather patterns. Do you have multiple water meters? WaterWise will track them separately.
Signing up for this free service is easy: Simply go to www.victoriawaterwise.com and register using your email address and account number, which can be found on your water bill.
To give you even greater peace of mind, the Utility Billing Office offers convenient remote options for paying your bill. To make a payment over the phone, you can call our automated phone system at 855-786-4109. If you’d like to avoid paying a convenience fee, you can set up a bank draft by visiting www.victoriatx.gov/waterbill (this webpage can also be used to make a one-time payment) or by contacting our office at 361-485-3400 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
We sometimes hear reports of scammers calling residents and asking them to pay their water bills by providing credit card information over the phone. The Utility Billing Office will never call you to request payment this way. If you’re unsure whether a call is legitimate, hang up and call us at 361-485-3400.
We hope that saving water with WaterWise will inspire you to be environmentally conscious in other areas of your life. For a start, you can sign up for paperless billing through our online payment system at www.victoriatx.gov/waterbill.
Michelle Ozuna is the Utility Billing Office manager for the City of Victoria.