Chesterfield County Utilities offers a residential companion meter to residents who have paid connection fees for a primary residential meter and would like a second meter to measure outside water use separately. No wastewater charges are applied to the residential companion meter, since outside water does not enter the sewer system. The residential companion meter for irrigation is available at a cost of $420, but is only available to Chesterfield County homeowners. It is not available for commercial use or entrances to subdivisions and their common areas.
How can I get a residential companion meter for an irrigation system?
To receive a residential companion meter, obtain a county plumbing permit specifically for a residential companion meter for irrigation service. The plumbing permit must include the installation of the backflow device for a residential companion meter. Plumbing permits can be obtained at the Chesterfield County Department of Building Inspection, 9800 Government Center Parkway in the Chesterfield County government complex next to the Chesterfield County Department of Utilities building. Building Inspection can be reached at 804-748-1057.
Once the plumbing permit is obtained, contact the New Construction Section of Chesterfield County Utilities for a water connection application. The New Construction Section is located on the first floor of the Chesterfield County Utilities building, 9840 Government Center Parkway. The New Construction Section can be reached at 748-1862.
When and where will it be installed?
Chesterfield County Utilities usually can install the residential companion irrigation meter within 21 calendar days after receiving an application, plumbing permit and a connection fee of $420. Chesterfield County Utilities will choose the exact location of the residential companion meter that is installed near the domestic meter.
What inspections are required after the work is complete?
After the residential companion meter is installed, it is the customer's responsibility to connect the irrigation piping to the companion meter. The customer may install his or her own irrigation system or contract the work to a plumber or irrigation contractor. The installation of all irrigation lines must meet the county's plumbing requirements at all times. All irrigation systems must include the installation of a backflow preventer between the residential companion meter and the irrigation system. When all work is completed, the customer must contact Chesterfield County Building Inspections at 748-1057 for a final inspection of the installation and the backflow preventer. The backflow preventer must be tested within 30 days of the final inspection and annually thereafter by a "backflow prevention device worker" as certified by the Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulations. Chesterfield County does not perform testing on these private backflow-prevention devices, set testing rates, or collect any revenue from these tests.
Why do I need a backflow preventer if I use a companion meter with an irrigation system, and how do I file the test results?
Backflow preventers play an important role in protecting drinking-water supplies, and the testing is required by the Virginia Department of Health. Test results must be returned to Chesterfield County Utilities, P.O. Box 608, Chesterfield, VA 23832. The Backflow Prevention Assembly Test Report can be found online at www.chesterfield.gov/utilities under Cross-Connection Control and Backflow Prevention Program. Call 748-1280 for more information.
How will I be billed?
After the residential companion meter is installed, the irrigation information, including meter number, billing period and usage, will be itemized on your next bill. Domestic water-meter usage is categorized as water service, and residential companion-meter usage is categorized as irrigation service. Both service charges are shown as line items in the transaction description and are included in the balance due.
See more information about backflow prevention.