Why a Water Audit is Vital for All Water Utilities
An AWWA water audit is an assessment of a water system’s cleanliness and reliability. It can be conducted by anyone knowledgeable about water systems. Many components make up an effective water audit, but only one or two components are relevant for a comprehensive water audit, depending on the quality of the water source and the complexity of the system. The AWWA water audit compiler can be used effectively to quickly compile reliable water audit information from a variety of water systems; thus allowing for quick comparisons of information across different water systems.
When using an AWWA water audit tool
the following key components will usually be present: a preliminary report that summarizes the full scope of the audit; a principal findings report describing the nature and scope of the review; a recommendation concerning management actions to improve water reliability and to control contamination; and recommendations about future policy considerations. It is not uncommon for there to be several levels of recommendations in an assessment report. Levels of recommendations depend on the extent of contamination and the nature of the system under review. Generally, the more locations you need to investigate, and the more detailed the data you are required to conduct, the higher the levels of recommendations will be. For example, if you are conducting a review of an irrigation system, your recommendations would include: restrict irrigation during non-business hours, restrict watering to designated days and times, install monitoring wells in affected zones, and implement controls for non-revenue water sources.
The AWWA methodology also includes several policy considerations.
The policy considerations focus on controlling costs and improving reliability. The costs of a utility system are affected by the level of usage, frequency of use, and the average age of the utilities. Frequent use increases maintenance and operating costs and reduces utility profitability. The age of the utilities means that utility rates and payments are gradually increasing over time and utilities may experience increases in reliability as well.
Every region in the country has different climates.
This affects water usage, which is a key indicator of overall utility costs. Therefore, regions with higher temperatures require more water and usage over a longer period. In addition, a hot and rainy climate requires more water to keep cooling systems running and to ensure reliable delivery of water to all areas promptly.
Facility use patterns can vary greatly with seasonal variations.
This makes it difficult to determine facility use at each point in time. A water audit helps to determine trends in water use and determine where facilities are experiencing overuse or underuse. It can help to prevent overuse or underuse by suggesting changes in operations. The audit can help to avoid increases in rates that result from facility use patterns, which can lead to significant savings for utilities.
The water audit helps to provide utilities with information
about the costs of their services. It helps to give customers a clearer picture of how water usage affects costs and whether improvements to services would be effective. Service providers may also choose to implement recommended improvements. Water audits are an important part of the services provided by water utility companies across the country.