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The New South Wales Government, Tamworth Regional Council, the University of Technology SydneyInstitute for Sustainable Futures, and Taggle Systems are joining forces to improve water efficiency in the home through an innovative research study.

The study aims to learn how much water can be saved when air cooling units are properly maintained. To collect this data, 100 eligible residents across the Tamworth region, who own an evaporative air cooler, will get a Taggle digital water meter installed on their cooler to allow researchers to track their system’s efficiency over time. The study includes a service on their unit mid-project – valued at up to $200 –to monitor the water consumption difference before and after the service.

The service will include things such as cleaning of the cooler pads and water tank, removal of any calcium deposits, and an inspection of the electrical components and motor belt which can all cause problems and could result in a drop in household water bills by helping the unit use less water.

NSW DPE Manager of Water Efficiency, Jethro Laidlaw, Taggle Business Development Executive, Steven Cato, NSW Water Minister, Rose Jackson, and Tamworth Mayor. Russell Webb. Picture by Peter Hardin. Published by Northern Daily Leader.

Stay cool, save water

During hot weather, evaporative air coolers can use up to 100 litres of water per hour, and during periods of drought, this high demand can stress limited water resources. The study will look at how units can be operated more efficiently, saving precious resources for the community – something that is particularly important ahead of a declared El Niño.

As approximately 8,000 homes in the Tamworth local government area are fitted with fixed evaporative air coolers, the outcome of this study could lead to major water savings in the region. New South Wales Minister for Water, Rose Jackson, said, “Being water-wise is front of mind as we brace for the coming El Niño. There are small things all of us can do, especially in our homes, to be smarter with the water we use.”

“That’s why we’re launching this first-of-its-kind study and teaming up with Council and experts at UTS to learn exactly how much water we can save through simple and easy actions – like properly maintaining air cooling units.

“At the same time, being more water efficient at home can boost hip-pocket savings for residents, while protecting water supplies for the entire community. Tamworth Mayor, Russell Webb, said, “Tamworth Regional Council is passionate about improving water efficiencies across the region and we are happy to support any study that provides our residents with more information on how they can conserve water. “This study will provide some great baseline data for water usage from evaporative air coolers.”

Digital meter rollout

Tamworth has recently completed a full rollout of digital water meters – the end-to-end solution delivered by Taggle – across the region so every property will also have its total water consumption data available via the MyTRC Water Portal.

Taggle Business Development Executive, Steven Cato, said, “In 12 months we’ve installed about 21,000 meters across Tamworth. These additional 100 meters for the study will provide valuable insights into a unique and a potentially highly effective water saving strategy.”

The digital water meters will record the hourly water consumption by the coolers, which will inform the quantities of water being used by the coolers separate to the households water use. This data can then be compared before and after the coolers are serviced to highlight how much water can be saved by regularly maintaining them.

“Trials like this will lead to not only better outcomes for Tamworth, but better outcomes for other regional centres and towns across Australia. Water is one of those scarce commodities wherever you are,” Mr Webb said.

This sponsored editorial is brought to you by Taggle Systems. For further information, please visit www.taggle.com

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