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PUBLIC NOTICE - SWITCH FROM CHLORAMINES TO CHLORINE - September 23, 2022 through October 2022 free chlorine will be used as the primary disinfectant instead of chloramines as required by North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality. Chloramines will be used thereafter. Click here to learn more    |    Irrigation Schedule -

Even numbered property addresses shall limit irrigation to Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays. Odd numbered property addresses shall limit irrigation to Tuesdays, Thursdays, and SaturdaysPlease note there is NO IRRIGATION ON MONDAYS. 

Click here to learn more    |    New Payment Portal Coming Soon - Stay tuned for details. Click here to learn more    |   

Can you explain the installation process?
The project includes replacing about 11,000 residential and commercial water meters with new, technologically advanced meters and registers that can communicate usage data via wireless technology directly to H2GO. All meters in H2GO’s utility service area, including domestic water, irrigation and reclaimed water, will be read using the advanced metering system.

During the first phase of the project, crews with a verified, contracted group will physically conduct a visual inspection of a sample of nonresidential meters throughout H2GO’s district to help determine specifications for the new system. Customers experienced no interruptions to their water service during the inspection. Installation of the new meter and communication module should take no more than 30 minutes in most cases, with your water service being unavailable for about 15 minutes of that time. H2GO and our contractors and consultants are committed to minimizing impacts from this important project and will, therefore, prepare and work according to reliable, updated schedules and ensure that interruptions in water service are kept to no more than 15 minutes in most cases. To ensure that the installation is complete, workers will briefly test the new meter.

While most work will occur within public rights-of-way and easements, H2GO will restore to original condition any private property impacted by the installation. Before temporarily interrupting individual water services, crews will make every effort to ensure that doing so will not impose an undo hardship on the customer. Such efforts will include observing the meter to see if water is being used and knocking on doors to contact those who may be inside.

Do I need to do anything to prepare for installation?
To help keep everyone safe, dogs and any other domestic pets will need to be kept out of yards during installation. Always keep meter box lids unobstructed.

Who is doing the work?
The project will be managed for H2GO by a verified contractor to be determined at a later date, which will ultimately be responsible for the day-to-day execution of the project, including recommending equipment and materials, selecting vendors and contractors, overseeing installation, and insuring the highest level of customer satisfaction. Contractors working on the project will carry proper identification and have successfully completed a background check. Contractors will not need to enter residential property, nor will they be asking for any form of payment from customers.

How does this system work?
The system works via wireless signals sent from a small radio unit inside the meter box that is connected to the water meter. The meter radio unit sends readings to regional collector units that then transmit the meter reading data to receivers in H2GO’s Office. Regional collectors will be located on existing water tanks, radio and cell phone towers located throughout H2GO’s district. Each radio unit will send a 111-millisecond usage report from the meter to H2GO’s office four times a day.

How does this system benefit customers?
Currently, every month, H2GO has to manually drive by nearly 11,000 homes to read meters. The advanced metering system will take vehicles off the road, significantly reducing the district’s carbon footprint.

Will this impact the homeowners side of the meter?
No, the homeowners side of the meter will not be impacted by these new meters and their installation.

What happens with the current meters and equipment?
The existing meters being replaced during the project will be recycled or offered to other governments for reuse. As is currently the case, water meters, and radio units will remain the property of the H2GO and H2GO will continue to perform the required maintenance on these units.

Will wireless technology affect my health or privacy?
The new meters will not negatively affect health or privacy. In fact, overall health will be improved and privacy enhanced by replacing vehicles and manual visits to your home with environmentally clean radio communication. The wireless portions of the system will be operated according to Federal Communications Commission rules, and will not interfere with other radio frequencies in the area. The transmitters use one-quarter of the power of a cellphone. The amount of exposure to radio waves decreases with the square of the distance from the source. Exposure to radio waves from smart meters is absolutely tiny compared to cellphones. In addition, transmission time for the units we are installing totals 15 seconds per day.

Can I still access the shut off valve in my meter box?
Your home's shut off valve is not in the meter box and customers should not be using the meter box to turn off your water, only H2GO employees should be accessing the meter box. Your home's shut off valve is typically somewhere around your home's foundation or near the meter box, but it is not in the meter box itself. If you cannot find your shutoff valve, you can call our office at 910-371-9949 and we can have someone come turn the water off for you when needed or if it is after hours you can call our on call number 910-367-1537.

Can I mow or drive over the meter box?
No, you should never mow over your meter box, drive heavy equipment over one, or cover it in anyway. Mowing over your meter box will damage the antennas that transmit your meter readings to regional collector units that then transmit the meter reading data to receivers in H2GO’s Office. Driving over the meter box can cause the box to collapse on itself. Both scenarios can prove to be costly fixes.

Can I cover the meter box?
No, you should never cover your meter box with anything, including, but not limited to, mulch, rocks, grass, plants, or straw. Obstructions interfere with our meter reading system by covering the antennas that transmit the signals to our office. When this happens, crews must manually find and read the meters. In cases of emergency or maintenance repair needs, H2GO crews may need to locate and access the meter boxes. The meter boxes should remain uncovered at all times to ensure a timely response to maintenance and repair needs.

Section 3.3 of H2GO’s Rules and Regulations
“d) It shall be unlawful to plant, place or allow to become established, vegetation, other than low-growing grass, over or within two feet of any water meter box owned by H2GO. It shall also be unlawful to block or cover remote-read metering antennas with any type of landscaping ground cover including soil, grass, mulch, stone, or brick pavers. Metering antennas must remain exposed. H2GO will not be responsible for repair or replacement of any vegetation or ground cover removed to expose metering antennas. It will be H2GO’s standard procedure to remove obstructions that interfere with remote-read metering functions. Violations of this Section shall be subject to a $50 civil penalty after an initial written notice, and a $100 civil penalty for each occurrence thereafter.”

Where did H2GO get our water from before the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant came online in Spring of 2022?
Brunswick County Public Utilities sold wholesale finished water to H2GO, Leland, Navassa, Northwest and about 10 other wholesale customers in southern Brunswick County.

Can H2GO purchase and treat raw water from the Cape Fear River?
No. Lower Cape Fear Water & Sewer Authority has previously informed H2GO that lack of capacity in their existing raw water transmission system prevents them from selling raw water allocations to H2GO.

Why did H2GO look to build and operate its own aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant?
Primarily, to better manage water costs and rates for our customers. For over a decade from 2011 to 2022, H2GO studied the comparative cost between building a aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant and continuing to purchase water from Brunswick County Public Utilities. H2GO’s team of professional planners, consulting engineers, hydrogeologists, and financial rate consultants evaluated, analyzed, and developed detailed technical and financial documentation necessary for H2GO’s staff and Board of Commissioners to determine that building an aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant would be financially beneficial to its customers. The aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant not only provides a financial benefit to H2GO’s customers, but it will also continue to meet the growing water needs of H2GO’s rapidly expanding customer base.

Why didn’t H2GO continue to buy wholesale water from Brunswick County Public Utilities?
The cost to buy wholesale water was at a point where the annual wholesale water payments to Brunswick County Public Utilities were greater than the annual cost to finance a new aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant. With H2GO’s growing user base, increasing water demands, and an escalating PPI (increasing wholesale water rates), H2GO’s wholesale water payments to Brunswick County Public Utilities continued to increase soon exceeded the total cost to finance and operate the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant.

Analogy: Renting a house sometimes makes sense; but when the landlord increases the rent and those rent payments get to a point that they exceed mortgage payments, insurance and taxes, it becomes good financial sense to buy the house.

 

What is wrong with the water from the Cape Fear River?
The Cape Fear River does provide a suitable raw water supply for treatment for potable water use; and Brunswick County Public Utilities does provide a good quality finished water to H2GO and other wholesale water customers. As with any surface water supplies, however, the river does have its vulnerabilities. These vulnerabilities include future supply allocations; susceptibility to chemical/toxic spills; 200+ wastewater dischargers upstream; agricultural run-off; algae blooms; emerging unregulated contaminants such as 1,4 Dioxane and GenX; pharmaceuticals; drought; and water quality degradation from the effects of hurricanes.

 

Did H2GO build and operate an aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment facility just to secure an alternate water source?
No. The decision to move forward with the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant was primarily based on the cost of water and the ability to manage expenses for the benefit of our customers’ rates. Having an alternate water source associated with our own aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant will, however, significantly improve water system resiliency for our customers. Although cost of water was the driving force to implement this project, an alternate water source was also a key consideration.

 

What benefit does the plant hold for customers and the community?
The plant produces clean, contaminant-free water for our community. H2GO customers did not see any water rate increases and the rates should remain at or below current rates for the foreseeable future. The plant will also provide a backup water supply for other communities in cases of critical water shortage emergencies. Deep-well ground water supplies are not vulnerable to surface contamination and other hazards, improving system resiliency for H2GO’s community.

 

What backup water supplies to the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant are available to H2GO?
H2GO maintains interconnections with Brunswick County Public Utilities – beneficial two-way interconnections to improve water system resiliency for both entities.

What would happen in the case of a drought?
The Lower Peedee and Black Creek aquifers are deep, confined aquifers. They are not susceptible to drought.

How much water is used in the H2GO service area?
H2GO’s average daily demand (ADD) for water is about 1.7 million gallons per day (MGD). The maximum daily demand has exceeded 3.7 MGD. The average daily water demand in the H2GO service area is projected to reach 3.0 MGD by 2035, with maximum daily demands at or above 6 MGD by 2035.

What is the capacity of the proposed reverse osmosis water treatment facility?
The aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant will be designed to produce up to 4.0 MGD of finished water. The plant will be designed to accommodate an expansion to 6.0 MGD and a build-out capacity of 8.0 MGD

What is reverse osmosis (RO)?

Reverse Osmosis (RO) is a form of water treatment where water is pumped under high pressure through membranes to remove impurities from the water. In fact, water purified through reverse osmosis is exceedingly high-quality water. Brands like Aquafina, Nestle Pure Life and Dasani use reverse osmosis to purify their bottled water.

Where is the site for the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant?
The aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant site is at 146 Gregory Rd Belville, North Carolina 28451. It is located in Belville the Waterford Business Park on a 34-acre parcel zoned for industrial use.

What is the architectural design of the facility?
The building (pictured below) will be an attractive addition to the industrial park. The tan walls and green roof will be compatible with site aesthetics, and the office facade will have coastal design features. The interior space will include a training room which can be used for operator seminars, educational learning, and tours for local school groups.


Where does the water come from to be treated by the reverse osmosis plant?
Groundwater from the deep, confined Lower Peedee aquifer (300’ to 400’ deep) and the deep, confined Black Creek aquifer (460’ to 600’ deep) will supply brackish water supplies to the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant.

What is brackish groundwater?
Brackish groundwater is water that has a greater dissolved-solids content than occurs in freshwater, but not as much as seawater.

What effect does the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant have on irrigation wells, community ponds, and storm water retention basins?
None. The production wells to be constructed in the deep, confined aquifers will not affect surficial aquifers, shallow unconfined aquifers, or surface water features.

How can H2GO pay the annual debt service for the revenue bond?
Customer rates for water service currently generate revenues sufficient to make annual debt service payments for the project. Annual debt service payments for the bond (less than previous annual wholesale water costs) replaced our payments to Brunswick County Public Utilities in the operating budget.

How does the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant affect future capital improvement projects for H2GO’s infrastructure?
It does not. Infrastructure improvements and other capital improvement projects are funded from impact fees charged to new residential and commercial service connections.

I’ve heard that it is expensive to operate a reverse osmosis water treatment facility. Is this true?
The reverse osmosis treatment process is power intensive. Electrical usage for pumps and equipment account for about 30% of the reverse osmosis operating costs. Including labor, power, chemicals, supplies, etc., the approximate operation and maintenance cost of water production is about $1.37 for each 1,000 gallons.

Membrane Water Treatment: A Simpler and More Cost- Effective Process Than You May Think

What chemicals are used in the reverse osmosis process?
Reverse osmosis requires an anti-scalant chemical for pre-treatment upstream of the RO membranes. Post-treatment includes calcium chloride; sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) or carbon dioxide; a corrosion inhibitor; sodium hypochlorite (bleach) for disinfection; and a caustic soda for final pH adjustment. Finished water will meet or exceed all State and Federal water quality standards.

Will there be less of a chlorine taste?
Per State requirements, we are required to maintain a chlorine residual in our water distribution system. At this time, wholesale water and chlorine residuals received from Brunswick County are dependent on their operations. 
 
With the RO operations, H2GO will be generating and injecting a sodium hypochlorite solution for water disinfection. Our operators will adjust disinfection dosing rates to maintain minimum regulated chlorine residuals.

Is there any wastewater discharge from the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant?
Yes. The reverse osmosis system will require the disposal of the reject brine (concentrate). The concentrate will be pumped to the Brunswick River and discharged under a new NPDES permit issued by the State of North Carolina.

Is there be any noise pollution, air pollution, or wastewater pollution from the RO plant?
No, the plant will be rather quiet and with no air or wastewater pollution.

Are there large trucks coming in and out of the plant constantly?
There will be periodic deliveries to support the operations, and those deliveries will be routed from US17 to Gregory Road.

Does the plant create light pollution that will impact the surrounding neighborhoods?
Absolutely not! We have the best interests in mind for our neighbors in close proximity to the existing business park. LED sight lighting will not spill out to adjacent properties.

Who will operate the new reverse osmosis water treatment facility?
H2GO has water treatment operators certified by the State of North Carolina to operate the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant and groundwater wells on staff. Existing staff, certified in water distribution and/or wastewater treatment, will be cross-trained under the direct supervision of the certified water plant operators.

How did the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant affect my water rates?
The reverse osmosis water project did not affect water rates or irrigation rates. Water rates will be maintained at or below current rates for the foreseeable future.

How did the aquifer-sourced reverse osmosis water treatment plant affect my sewer rates?
The reverse osmosis water project does not affect sewer rates. H2GO’s operating budgets are separate for administration, water distribution, sewage collection, and sewage treatment.

How do H2GO water and sewer rates compare to other area utilities?

                            *Rate Structures as of October 2020

 

H2GO

Leland

CFPUA

BrunsCo PU

**Water Base

12.00

15.00

13.78

12.00

Water Usage 0-3,000 gal.

3.50

3.49

4.02

2.85

Water Usage 3,000-6,000 gal.

4.00

3.74

4.02

2.85

Water Usage 6,000-10,000 gal.

4.00

4.10

4.02

3.30

Water Usage 10,000+ gal.

4.00

4.25

4.02

3.3

 

 

 

 

 

**Sewer Base

12.00

15.00

14.55

39.00

Sewer Usage 0-3,000 gal.

5.41

3.35

4.63

0.00

Sewer Usage 3,000-6,000 gal.

5.41

3.61

4.63

6.50

Sewer Usage 6,000-10,000 gal.

5.41

4.64

4.63

6.50

Sewer Usage 10,000+ gal.

5.41

4.79

4.63

6.50

 

 

 

 

 

Combined Water & Sewer
(3,000 gal.)

50.73

50.52

54.28

60.15

 

 

 

 

 

***Irrigation Base

14.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

Irrigation Usage 0-1,000 gal.

4.90

19.76

4.56

3.05

Irrigation Usage 1,000-3,000 gal.

4.90

 

4.56

3.05

Irrigation Usage 3,000-6,000 gal.

4.90

5.02

4.56

3.05

Irrigation Usage 6,000-10,000 gal.

4.90

5.27

4.56

3.15

Irrigation Usage 10,000+ gal.

4.90

5.53

4.56

4.30

*Each utility has a unique operating system, varying operating expenses, and different customer bases with different demand classes; and any rate comparison between any of the utilities is not absolute. Rates are in Per 1,000
**About 60% of H2GO’s customers use 3,000 gallons or less, on an average, each month.
***Less than 25% of all H2GO customers have separate irrigation meters.  30% of H2GO’s annual water demand is from metered irrigation usage.



Are there other reverse osmosis treatment facilities in North Carolina?
Yes. Currently, there are 12 operating reverse osmosis treatment facilities in North Carolina. The largest North Carolina RO plant, a 5.2 MGD facility in Kill Devil Hills, has been operating since 1989.

What is my deposit?
Deposit is $50 for water, $50 for sewer and $50 for irrigation.

Customer deposits will be processed for refund on or after the 10th calendar day of each month (or the next available business date) based on the following criteria:

  • Customer must have 24 consecutive months of exceptional payment history immediately preceding the monthly processing date;
  • An exceptional payment history shall be defined as having one or less late penalties; no shut-off notices; and no NSF returned payments;
  • Customer must have a zero account balance on the monthly processing date. 

 H2GO customer deposits are processed automatically based on the above criteria - customers do not need to request these refunds.

Do you offer bank draft as a bill paying method?
Yes, we are very happy to set up your account to be paid automatically from your account. There is no additional charge or fee for this service. Your bill will be deducted from your bank account on the due date or next business day. You can set it up through your online bill pay portal or by filling out the automatic bank draft authorization form.

When will the automatic bank draft start?
Once we have received your bank draft authorization form, it takes approximately a week to get your bank draft established. Please continue to pay your bill in your usual manner until you receive a bill with the notation 'DO NOT PAY -- WILL BE DRAFTED' or some variance.

What do I need to do if I'm changing bank accounts and I am on bank draft?
All changes to any bank draft information can be submitted online by using our automatic bank draft cancellation form and then resubmitting a new automatic bank draft authorization form.

If I move to a new address, will my bank draft automatically be set up at the new address?
No, please let us know if you want to remain on bank draft. We will need a new automatic bank draft authorization form to be completed for the new address.

How long after starting service will my water be turned on?
If the water is off at the location you are requesting service, we will schedule a time to have it turned on. Typically, we ask customers to fill out their residential application and pay all required fees a week prior to the date they would like their water turned on.

If my water gets disconnected for non-payment or returned check, when will service be restored?
Once the account is paid, including disconnect and late fees, a work order will be generated to restore service that day (or the next day if payments are made after hours). We restore service on a first-come first-serve basis, so we are unable to provide an exact time for reconnection. If we attempt to restore service and see signs that water is running inside the home, service will not be restored to protect your property.

What type of payments do you take at H2GO?
We accept cash, check, credit and debit cards and money orders in the office. We only accept cash, check and money orders through the mail or at our kiosk.

Why does H2GO charge a monthly irrigation base fee of $12 year-round?
H2GO’s rate consultant, Raftelis Financial Consultants, performed an in-depth rate study of our customer base, water demands, operating expenses, and revenue streams. What they determined was that historically, on an annual basis, metered irrigation water accounts for about 30% of our total annual water usage. To implement and maintain an equitable rate structure, Raftelis recommended that irrigation rates generate 30% of the annual revenues - a % of demand vs. % of revenue rate basis. Irrigation base rates and usage fees are part of this rate structure methodology. Resulting irrigation rates are balanced between low base rates with high usage fees versus year-round base rates with moderate usage fees. Irrigation usage has the biggest impact on peak demands; and because it costs more to construct, operate, and maintain distribution infrastructure to meet peak demands on the system, some might argue that irrigation rates should generate a higher percentage of the annual revenues. While in theory this might be true, we don’t believe it to be wholly applicable to our system as many of our customers irrigate through their residential meters and pay corresponding sewer usage fees, thus generating additional revenues to offset the higher operating costs required to meet the peak water demands on the system. There are, however, fixed expenses associated with infrastructure designed and installed to meet peak demands, and year-round base rates ensure those expenses are met regardless of usage. If you have additional questions or concerns, please contact Bob Walker, Executive Director at 910-371-9949, or via email at bwalker@H2GOonline.com.

What is the proper way to cut and cap my irrigation line?

 

I think there is a main break in my neighborhood. What should I do?
If you notice water bubbling up through a crack in the street, a sudden drop in water pressure or a complete loss of water, call our main office at (910) 371-9949 or our 24-hour emergency line at (910) 367-1537.

Why is my water shut off during a water main repair?
Often during a break, the flow of pressurized water is to great and we need to temporarily shut off the water. h2GO will send out robocalls, put handouts on customer doors, announce it on their website, Facebook, Twitter and NextDoor to inform impacted customers if there is a water outage to let them know what is happening and how long the work is expected to last.

Is my water quality affected by a water main break?
Customers impacted by a water main break may experience air or sediments in their pipes and water may temporarily appear discolored. Discoloration can occur when pipes and valves are disrupted during repairs. H2GO always tests water from the impacted areas to ensure no harmful contaminates have entered the system and this typically takes 24 hours to get the results back. Impacted customers will be under a boil advisory while the testing is taking place.

Who do I contact for after hour water emergencies?
(910) 367-1537, we will always have someone on-call.

Who do I contact for after hour sewer emergencies?
(910) 367-2084, we will always have someone on-call.

 

 

Is H2GO a private utility?
No. H2GO is a governmental, public entity established by the State of North Carolina for the purpose of preserving and promoting the public health and welfare.

Is H2GO governed by Leland or by Brunswick County?
No. H2GO is a self-governing public entity with an elected, five member Board of Commissioners. Our regional service area is generally northeast Brunswick County and includes Leland, Belville, parts of Navassa, and customers located outside the limits of these incorporated Towns.

Where does H2GO get our water from?
Brunswick County Public Utilities sells wholesale finished water to H2GO, Leland, Navassa, Northwest and about 20 other wholesale customers in southern Brunswick County.

How does Brunswick County Public Utilities set wholesale rates to H2GO and other wholesale customers?
Wholesale water rates charged by Brunswick County Public Utilities are based on the Producers Price Index (PPI). The PPI has increased by more than 93% since 1985 and is projected to increase another 72% over the next 20 years.

Does the PPI for wholesale water rates affect H2GO’s retail rates?
Yes. H2GO pays for every gallon of water purchased from Brunswick County Public Utilities. If the PPI and wholesale water rates increase, as they have by more than 27% over the past 10 years, H2GO passes along those direct cost increases to our customers.

Why can’t H2GO negotiate better wholesale water rates with Brunswick County Public Utilities?
Wholesale water rates must be consistent for all wholesale water customers. The County has existing wholesale water contracts that require the use of the PPI method to set wholesale water rates. The wholesale water contracts that contain that provision expire in 2020 and until then, the County is unable to change to a cost-based rate setting method.

If Brunswick County Public Utilities set wholesale rates based on an AWWA cost-based operation and maintenance rate methodology, would it affect H2GO’s retail rates?
Brunswick County Public Utilities’ officials have stated that the difference in rates between the PPI and the AWWA rate methodology is within pennies. However, if and when Brunswick County Public Utilities moves to an AWWA cost-based rate methodology, wholesale water rates could be directly affected by Brunswick County Public Utilities’ capital improvement projects, increased debt service, expanded operations and maintenance, and increased raw water costs charged by Lower Cape Fear Water & Sewer Authority.

What is AWWA?
AWWA is the American Water Works Association. www.awwa.org

Where does Brunswick County get their water from?
Brunswick County buys raw water from the Lower Cape Fear Water & Sewer Authority (LCFW&SA), who owns this region’s permit to withdraw water from the Cape Fear River. Lower Cape Fear Water & Sewer Authority provides wholesale regional raw water supplies to local governments and industry within a five-county service area comprised of Bladen, Brunswick, Columbus, New Hanover and Pender Counties.

How many customers are in the H2GO service area?
H2GO serves over 15,000 water customers and over 15,500 sewer customers. The historic growth rate for our service area has been about 2.5% annually. H2GO’s customer base is projected to double within the next 25 years.

What areas does H2GO provide water to?
H2GO provides water to all of Leland, Belville, parts of Navassa and the unincorporated areas surrounding.

Can I shut off my own water?
Yes, but only at your house valve. Only authorized personnel have access to H2GO's pipes, meters, etc.

Where can I find out about buried pipelines, gas lines, or power lines before I excavate or dig on my property?
Dial 811, the national Call-Before-You-Dig hotline.

H2GO dug up my yard, when will you come out to service my site?
Customers are serviced in accordance to the level of service needed. Please note that customers with urgent issues are serviced first and crews fix emergency leaks and outages they could cause customers to be without service first. We make every effort to service your site within 10 business days or less.

Can I flush animal waste or products down my drain?
We encourage customers not to flush animal waste or products such as poop bags or pee pads down the toilet. We highly recommend that people stick to flushing the three P's (Human) Pee, (Human) Poop, and (Toilet) Paper. Animal waste or products should not be flushed down the toilet into the sanitary sewer system because animals have a different diet than humans do, so their waste and products do not break down like ours. In large quantities, because it doesn't break down properly, it can cause backups in the system that lead to other problems like Sanitary Sewer Overflows (SSO).

 

 

What is a Grinder Pump?
A grinder pump is a pump unit located in a fiberglass tank installed at a low point below your household plumbing. A grinder pump works much like a household garbage disposal, but on a larger scale. It grinds up wastewater generated in your home (i.e. toilet use, shower, washing machine, sink drains, etc.) and pumps it into the public sewer system.

How does the grinder pump system work?
A grinder pump is placed in a tank that is buried in a convenient outdoor location on a homeowner’s property. The tank provides wastewater holding storage capacity. When water is used in the house, wastewater flows into the tank. When the wastewater in the tank reaches a pre-set level, the grinder pump automatically turns on, grinds the waste, and pumps it out of the tank via the homeowner’s on-site pressure sewer line and into the public sewer system. A grinder pump will normally run for about 15 minutes and automatically turn off when the tank is emptied. The pump is powered by electricity and is connected to a control panel installed near your grinder pump tank.

Why do some homes need grinder pumps?
In most instances, wastewater flows by gravity from a building sewer (lateral connection) to a public sewer main. However, because of elevation, gravity sewers may not work in all instances. In situations where a home’s sewer service line leaves the building at a lower elevation than the public sewer main, a grinder pump is sometimes used to grind and pump wastewater to the main. See diagram below illustrating typical grinder pump layout.

What is the size of the line from the grinder pump to H2GO’s service main
The low-pressure sewer is typically 1½” diameter.

What is the flow rate of the pump?
The grinder unit will pump about 10 gallons (+/-) per minute.

What is the duration of pump operation per day?
Typical operation is about 15 minutes per day for typical residential houses. Depending on water usage, the pump may run once a day, twice a day, or once every other day.

How noisy is the pump?
With an outdoor unit buried in the ground, you will probably not hear it at all if you are 10 feet away. If you’re standing on top of the tank, it sounds like your washing machine when it’s running – just a hum.

Who is responsible for the grinder pump system?
The homeowner is responsible for the pump system from the house to the property line. Customer-owned grinder pump systems include the small diameter pressure sewer from the property line to the pump basin, the pump, valves and valve boxes on the small diameter force main, pump tank, electrical panel, and associated appurtenances. The gravity service line from the building to the pump tank, electrical connections to the pump system, and generators connected to the pump power supply are also considered part of the customer-owned pump system. H2GO’s responsibility for sewer service begins after the property line in the public right-of-way.

Who is responsible for maintenance on the grinder pump system?
Other than warranty issues, the homeowner is responsible for maintenance on the pump system. H2GO is not responsible for maintaining any customer-owned pump system that is connected to or discharges into any public sewer. Upon the request of the customer, H2GO may repair or maintain a customer-owned pump system that discharges into any public sewer that has been installed pursuant to H2GO specifications. All maintenance and repair costs are the customer’s responsibility.

What are the warranty periods for the grinder pumps and control panels?
For grinder pump units installed under the new grinder pump policy effective 3/10/2015, the pumps will carry a 24 month factory warranty from the date of installation. The control panel will carry a 12 month factory warranty from the date of delivery. These warranties do not cover lightning strikes. Repair costs due to negligence or misuse of the pump system will not be covered under the warranty. Negligence or misuse includes violations of the H2GO Sewer Use Rules and Regulations, and/or disposing of sand, rock, gravel, metal, grease, feminine products or any other substance that cannot reasonably be expected to be pumped without damaging or rendering inoperable the customer-owned pump system.

What can I do to protect my grinder pump?
A properly maintained grinder pump should be able to handle wastewater from the kitchen, bathroom, laundry, etc. However, some chemicals and substances can adversely impact a grinder pump and may cause safety hazards. Please check the labels on all chemicals before using or disposing. Never put any of the following materials into sinks, toilets or drains as they can clog your home system and create unsafe conditions in your lines and tank:

Cooking fat, lard, oil or grease; Degreasing Solvents; Cigarette butts; Dental Floss; Sanitary napkins, tampons or diapers; Q-Tips; Sanitary wipes such as baby wipes or disposable floor wipes; Hair clippings; Cat litter; Strong chemical, toxic, caustic, or poisonous substance; Explosive or flammable materials; Glass, metal, wood, eggshells, seafood shells, coffee beans, aquarium rocks or gravel; Plastic Objects; Rubber gloves or other disposable gloves; Fireplace ashes.

It is not advisable to plant flowers or shrubs or place such items as fences, decorative pilings, fish ponds, etc. within the immediate area as damage to the pump, underground electrical or piping systems may occur. Electrical power and alarm wires are buried under the ground between the control panel and the tank. Before digging in the area, you should contact H2GO to have a technician locate the underground lines.

***Never connect a sump pump to the grinder pump system. Doing so is a violation of H2GO’s Sewer Use Rules and Regulations; it will reduce the sewer main flow capacity; and it will shorten the life of your grinder pump.***

How do I properly maintain my grinder pump?
In addition to the previously provided tips, please follow the manufacturer’s Owner’s Manual. In the event you have misplaced the Owner’s Manual, only two types of grinder pumps are currently approved for use in the H2GO service area: Compass Pointe Service Area – Zoeller E7020 Progressing Cavity Grinder Pump H2GO Service Area outside of Compass Pointe – Zoeller E7011 Reversible Grinder Pump Local manufacturer’s representative – Shallotte Electric Stores, 4900 South Main Street, PO Box 2267, Shallotte, NC 28459. 910-754-6000. www.shallotteelectric.com

What should I do if my grinder pump alarm goes off?
If there is too much flow going into your grinder pump unit or if the pump has failed to start, the high sewage level will automatically trigger an alarm horn and light to alert you of the problem. You should take the following steps:

1. Immediately discontinue your water use to prevent an overflow.
2. Turn off the alarm by touching the alarm silence pad indicated on the side of the control panel. The alarm horn should silence but the light will remain on.
3. Wait fifteen minutes. A high level of water usage will sometimes cause the alarm to come on. This situation is self-correcting. If the pump is operating correctly, the tank will automatically be pumped down and the alarm light will turn off.
4. If the alarm light is still on after fifteen minutes, contact H2GO On-Call Emergency Services at 910-367-2084.
5. Never attempt to open the tank cover or the electrical panel box.

CAUTION: Electrical shock or damage to the system may occur

What should I do if there is a power outage?
Your grinder pump is powered by electricity and will not function during a power outage. In order to prevent waste from backing up into the lowest sink, tub, or toilet in your home, severely limit the interior use of water until power is restored. This means do not shower or wash dishes and limit flushing the toilet. While your holding tank has a limited capacity, if the system was already full and ready to pump just before the power went out, there will be even less storage available.

What should I do with my grinder pump when I go on vacation?
If you plan on being away for an extended period of time, replace the wastewater in the tank with clean water to help minimize odors. First run water from an inside faucet long enough for the grinder pump to start working. After the pump starts, turn the inside faucet off. The pump will run until the tank is empty and shut off automatically. This process will cleanse the pump and leave it filled with a minimum of clean water. Always leave the power to the pump on.

Who should I contact with other questions or concerns?
Please contact:

Brunswick Regional Water & Sewer H2GO
Bob Walker, Executive Director
PO Box 2230
Leland, NC 28451
910-371-9949
bwalker@H2GOonline.com

H2GO Emergency On-Call Services
910-367-2084

 

 

What does my irrigation system have to have to be installed?
All new permanent in-ground irrigation systems must have:

  • A programmable controller for adjustment of irrigation frequency and intensity;
  • Rain sensors to automatically shut off irrigation system when up to one-fourth inch of rain has fallen.

Is there an irrigation schedule?
The mandatory outdoor irrigation schedule applies to all spray irrigation systems and allows customers to irrigate according to the following schedule:

  • Odd-numbered addresses may water once on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays;
  • Even-numbered addresses may water once on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Fridays;
  • No customers are permitted to water on Mondays.

Do these restrictions apply to drip irrigation, hand-watering, car washing or pressure washing?
The irrigation schedule does not apply to the use of hand-watering, drip irrigation, washing of cars, houses, buildings, decks, etc.

What if I irrigate my yard with a private well?
If you are using a private well to irrigate your lawn, garden, or landscape, then the Odd-Even Watering Policy does not apply; scheduled watering only affects H2GO water users.  In the event you receive a notice for non-compliance, please call H2GO at (910) 371-9949 to provide evidence of an alternate water source providing the property’s irrigation needs.

How do you define hand-watering?
Hand-watering refers to the application of water for irrigation through a hand-held hose or watering container. A person must be physically holding the hose or container. Watering by hand cannot occur unattended.

Can I water my potted plants and hanging baskets?
Yes. A reasonable amount of water used for outdoor potted plants and hanging baskets is acceptable. The Odd-Even Outdoor Watering Policy is aimed at reducing significant daily water use caused by activities such as watering lawns and gardens.

I would like to install new sod, but will need to water more frequently than this schedule will allow, can I apply for permission to irrigate outside of this schedule?
H2GO’s Executive Director or designee may grant temporary exceptions permits to the provisions of this Section 2.6 for periods of up to 90 days for the establishment of new turf year-round or for the re-establishment of turf seasonally. To apply for the permit, contact Executive Director Bob Walker via email at bwalker@H2GOonline.com. Please apply for the permit before you install any new landscaping and allow at least 5 business days for processing; submitting a request does not guarantee that a permit will be granted.

What watering schedule should be followed for medians and common areas that do not have a traditional address?
Medians that do not have a traditional address should be watered according to the even-address schedule. If a common area (non-median) falls along a side of the street that is associated with odd or even addresses, it should be watered according to the relative schedule. If such a determination cannot be made, an even-address schedule should be followed. For example, a common area at the main entrance of a subdivision lies on the right side of the street. The homes on this side of the street all have even addresses. This common area should be watered on an even-address schedule.

Why do we have to follow this schedule?
Irrigation is meant to supplement turf-grass water requirements, not replace seasonal precipitation. H2GO’s new irrigation policy to alternate irrigation days based on odd/even address is intended to promote water conservation and reduce peak day demands on the water distribution system. In doing so, the need to expand treatment capacities, storage facilities, and pumping systems is pushed further into the future, which helps to manage affordable customer rates. Too often, water utilities find themselves in need of frequent system upgrades and expansions to accommodate peak-day demands, often two-times greater than average-day demands, from irrigation usage generated by less than 40% of the total customer base. H2GO’s irrigation policy seeks to break that cycle.

Does this apply to rain water or reclaimed water?
No, the use of pond water, rainwater, and other non-potable sources for irrigation purposes is not restricted by this schedule.

I manage a complex with multiple addresses but just one irrigation system., how should we operate our system?
If an irrigation system that serves both odd and even addresses cannot be set to differentiate zones by address, your entire complex may be assigned a schedule to follow by H2GO. Please contact executive director Bob Walker at bwalker@H2GOonline.com.

Am I required to water on all 3 days of the schedule?
No, it does not require you to water all 3 days. Customers can water up to 3 days per week, but are encouraged to water less frequently, based on the needs of their landscape. Customers should adjust the frequency of watering (within the alternate-day schedule) based on what will keep their landscape thriving. Most times, just once per week may be sufficient for established landscapes.

Do these restrictions replace the water shortage response restrictions?
No, these restrictions do not replace the water shortage response restrictions. When a water shortage is declared, the restrictions imposed by the Water Shortage Response Ordinance shall supersede this schedule.

If it rains on one of my scheduled watering days, can I water on another non-scheduled day?
No, watering may occur at your address only according to the assigned schedule. You are encouraged not to water your lawn on days when it is raining.

What is the proper amount of water to maintain a healthy lawn?
A healthy lawn needs only one-inch of water per week.  This amount may vary, however, depending on your individual yard’s underlying soil conditions and the exposure to direct sunlight.

What type of enforcement of the ordinance will be occurring?
H2GO staff will patrol for violations. Customers who violate the year-round water efficiency ordinance will receive a written notice for the first and second violation. Repeat violations may lead to civil penalties of $100 for the third violation and $250 for each subsequent violation. The Executive Director also has the authority to suspend water users service for failure to comply.

How can I report a violation if I see one?
Citizens can call H2GO at (910) 371-9949 to report a violation. H2GO takes all reports seriously and deploys staff to follow up on all reports of violations; however, formal notices of violations are not issued unless H2GO staff witness the violation.

Why does H2GO charge a monthly irrigation base fee of $12 year-round?
H2GO’s rate consultant, Raftelis Financial Consultants, performed an in-depth rate study of our customer base, water demands, operating expenses, and revenue streams. What they determined was that historically, on an annual basis, metered irrigation water accounts for about 30% of our total annual water usage. To implement and maintain an equitable rate structure, Raftelis recommended that irrigation rates generate 30% of the annual revenues - a % of demand vs. % of revenue rate basis. Irrigation base rates and usage fees are part of this rate structure methodology. Resulting irrigation rates are balanced between low base rates with high usage fees versus year-round base rates with moderate usage fees. Irrigation usage has the biggest impact on peak demands; and because it costs more to construct, operate, and maintain distribution infrastructure to meet peak demands on the system, some might argue that irrigation rates should generate a higher percentage of the annual revenues. While in theory this might be true, we don’t believe it to be wholly applicable to our system as many of our customers irrigate through their residential meters and pay corresponding sewer usage fees, thus generating additional revenues to offset the higher operating costs required to meet the peak water demands on the system. There are, however, fixed expenses associated with infrastructure designed and installed to meet peak demands, and year-round base rates ensure those expenses are met regardless of usage. If you have additional questions or concerns, please contact Bob Walker, Executive Director at 910-371-9949, or via email at bwalker@H2GOonline.com.

What is the proper way to cut and cap my irrigation line?

Why was my first bill so high?
Because of the transition from Leland’s utility billing to H2GO’s utility billing, Brunswick Forest customers received two water/sewer bills covering bill cycles of 76 and 42 days. The usage to be billed in September 2021 will reflect the actual billing cycle of ~31 days.

What is H2GO doing to ensure this issues do not persist?
H2GO is in the process of upgrading the meters in Brunswick Forest and other former Town of Leland customers. The new meters will be the same Advance Metering Technology that we use throughout the system, allowing for remote reads from the office and hour-by-hour usage tracking ability. This technology will help our team with leak detection and you ensure you aren't paying for pesky leaks.

Are the water/sewer rates different from the Town of Leland?
Comparing H2GO water and sewer rates to previous Leland utility billings, the monthly water/sewer base fees are $3 less, water usage rates are $0.01/1,000 gallons more, and sewer usage rates are $2.20/1,000 gallons more. For an average customer using 3,000 gallons of water per month, the H2GO water/sewer monthly bill will be about $3.63 more than the monthly bill from Leland.

How do irrigation rates compare?
Irrigation billing is handled a bit differently. Leland had no monthly irrigation base fee, but charged $19.76 for the first 1,000 gallons, and thereafter applied tiered usage rates starting at $4.76/1,000 gallons. H2GO charges a monthly base irrigation fee of $12 and $4.90/1,000 gallons. For customer irrigating seven months or more per year, customers will realize an annual irrigation savings under the H2GO irrigation rate structure.

Why does H2GO charge a monthly irrigation base fee of $12 year-round?
H2GO’s rate consultant, Raftelis Financial Consultants, performed an in-depth rate study of our customer base, water demands, operating expenses, and revenue streams. What they determined was that historically, on an annual basis, metered irrigation water accounts for about 30% of our total annual water usage. To implement and maintain an equitable rate structure, Raftelis recommended that irrigation rates generate 30% of the annual revenues - a % of demand vs. % of revenue rate basis. Irrigation base rates and usage fees are part of this rate structure methodology. Resulting irrigation rates are balanced between low base rates with high usage fees versus year-round base rates with moderate usage fees. Irrigation usage has the biggest impact on peak demands; and because it costs more to construct, operate, and maintain distribution infrastructure to meet peak demands on the system, some might argue that irrigation rates should generate a higher percentage of the annual revenues. While in theory this might be true, we don’t believe it to be wholly applicable to our system as many of our customers irrigate through their residential meters and pay corresponding sewer usage fees, thus generating additional revenues to offset the higher operating costs required to meet the peak water demands on the system. There are, however, fixed expenses associated with infrastructure designed and installed to meet peak demands, and year-round base rates ensure those expenses are met regardless of usage. If you have additional questions or concerns, please contact Bob Walker, Executive Director at 910-371-9949, or via email at bwalker@H2GOonline.com.

In the past, there were problems with capacity and water pressure because the Brunswick Forest Water Tower could not operate at full capacity.
Capacity issues are no longer an issue for you. Your water is not coming just from the Brunswick Forest Water Tower anymore. You are being fed through our system like the rest of our customers. H2GO’s Aquifer-Sourced Reverse Osmosis Water Treatment Plant was designed to produce up to 4.0 million gallons per day (MGD) of finished water and H2GO’s average daily demand for water is about 1.7 MGD, allowing enough capacity to accommodate our growing customer base.

H2GO’s pressures are at equal or greater pressures as the county’s system, providing adequate pressure to ensure a constant flow of water throughout our entire district. We see pressure anywhere between 55 and 75 PSI throughout the district.

Where can I find a copy of the Interlocal Agreement?
The ILA can be found on our website HERE.

 

 

What is a Reduced Pressure Zone (RPZ)?

A RPZ backflow preventer is a device located in your irrigation line (in a box above ground) downstream of the meter before any branching or before point of use.

Why do I have to have a RPZ?

The RPZ protects from both back-siphonage and back pressure events.  Its purpose is to keep any contamination from entering into H2GO water system from your irrigation system, should the water system suddenly lose pressure.  Loss of pressure has happened in the past resulting in a condition where contaminated water entered the water system.

How long has it been required to have a RPZ?

Public Law 93-523 which established the Safe Drinking Water Act was approved and passed in 1974.  This Law states that the water purveyor is responsible for the integrity of the water supplied from the distribution system. Furthermore, according to State legislation, we as the water purveyor are held solely responsible for the quality of the public potable water, because of this H2GO has followed State requirements in establishing a Cross-Connection Control Ordinance. This was placed in effect by May 2004. (Note: There are and will not be ANY GRANDFATHERED in exceptions)

Why are you just now enforcing the issue?

H2GO is continuing to work hard to comply with State Rules and Regulations in all that we do. We have worked hard to provide each customer with the best quality water possible at the best price.

Which RPZs are acceptable to H2GO?

Any RPZ that is certified by the University of Southern California is acceptable. Some common ones installed throughout H2GO are Wilkins 975XL, Watts 009, and Wilkins 375.

Who can install the RPZ?

Your local licensed plumber should be capable of installing the RPZ. We suggest shopping around for the cost of having this done varies from plumber to plumber. Also, be sure your plumber is aware of H2GO Rules and Regulations for installing the RPZ. They can contact our office should they need a copy of our Specifications.

Is anything required after the RPZ is installed?

Yes. Once the RPZ is installed, it needs to be tested initially and then once a year thereafter.

Who can test the RPZ?

Anyone who is certified by the State of North Carolina to test approved backflow assemblies can test your RPZ. We have a list of testers on file; you can request a copy from the office anytime. If you choose a tester not on our list, that tester will need to send in a copy of their certification and their calibration certificate before we can accept your test result.

Do I need to send in the test result or does the tester?

Most of our testers send us a copy of the test result; however there are a few who don’t. Please check with your tester to see if they will send it in or if you need to do it. They should give you a copy for your record as well as keep a copy for their record.

Where does the test result need to be sent?

The test can be emailed to dgreiner@H2GOonline.com, mailed to Attn. Cross Connection Control PO Box 2230 Leland, NC 28451, or delivered to the office at 516 Village Rd Leland, NC 28451.

I got a letter reminding me to have my RPZ tested, how long do I have to get it done?

Please try to have a test scheduled within two weeks of receiving the notice. If you need additional time from the letter's deadline, please contact the office for an extension. You do not want to wait until this letter arrives, because that means you are late for the test.

What will happen if I don’t get my RPZ tested?

Failure to have your RPZ tested will result in having your irrigation meter locked and/or removed. Also, you could be faced with a $100.00 fine. Not having a backflow device at all is considered a cross-connection, which is a $1,000.00 fine plus any State fines if any occur.

What will happen if my Irrigation service is locked?

Once we lock your irrigation service, you will be charged a $35 reconnect fee and a $50 service call. Also, you will need to provide us with who will test your RPZ and the tester will need to contact us to let us know when they will do the test. Once the fees are paid, and we know that your RPZ is scheduled to be tested, we will unlock your irrigation meter.

What are the alternatives from getting a RPZ?

If you choose not to use your irrigation system, you have the right to disconnect. You would have to cut and cap off the line on your side of the meter. Once this is done, you will need to contact our office and schedule for an inspection. When we verify that your line is cut and capped properly, we will remove the meter. Please note before you decide to disconnect your irrigation system, any water used through your house meter effects your sewer bill, the sewer bill is contingent upon water consumption.

What do I do if my water is discolored?
We regularly flush our water mains in the spring and summer months to push out the sediment, but that action -- or any other disturbance such as fire suppression, a main break, contractor work, or a flow test -- can temporarily stir up the sediment that causes discolored water. If your water becomes discolored, run a cold water tap at full force until the water clears. Usually it clears in just a few minutes. If it doesn’t, call H2GO at (910) 371-9949.

Why does my water smell like chlorine?
A small amount of chlorine is added to our systems once a year to kill any viruses or bacteria that could be present in our lines. This harmless amount of chlorine helps keep the water protected all the way to your tap. We add chlorine as a gas, which does allow it to dissipate out of the water. If you are bothered by a slight chlorine smell or taste, you can fill a clean pitcher with cold water, leave the container at least partially exposed to air, and let the water sit. Most, if not all, of the chlorine will dissipate within 12 hours. The container can be left on the counter or in the fridge -- the key is to not completely seal the container.

Why does drinking water often look cloudy when first taken from a faucet and then clear up?
The cloudy water is caused by tiny air bubbles in the water similar to the gas bubbles in carbonated soft drinks. After a while, the bubbles rise to the top and are gone. This type of cloudiness occurs more often in the winter, when the drinking water is cold.

What is wrong if I smell a rotten egg odor when I run water in the house?
The smell of rotten eggs indicates the presence of hydrogen sulfide. The odor originates as sewer gas being displaced from the drain when the tap is run. A simple test is to fill a glass of water, take it to a room that has no water, and then sniff the water. If the water no longer has an odor, the drain is the source. A remedy for cleaning the drain is to pour one-quarter cup baking soda down the drain and follow it with a cup of vinegar. When the fizzing stops, flush the drain with boiling water. If your tap water has an unusual taste or odor, call H2GO at (910) 371-9949.

What do I do during a boil advisory?
Check out our Printable Brochure HERE

Where can I find more information about my water quality?
You can view the Consumer Confidence Report and other related reports HERE.

What is the Black/Grey/Pink/Orange Slimy Stuff in my Home?:
If you are experiencing black/grey/pink/orange stains or slippery residues in the shower, in a toilet, at a tap, or in the washing machine, you do not have a water quality problem, and you need not fear a health issue. These residues indicate the presence of naturally occurring Serratia Marcescens bacteria, which are commonly seen in our area and is commonly found growing in bathrooms (especially on tile grout, shower corners, toilet water lines, and basins), where it manifests as a black, grey, pink, pink-orange, or orange discoloration and leave a black or grey slimy film feeding off phosphorus-containing materials or fatty substances such as soap and shampoo residue. This residue is harmless to humans.

For more information on the Serratia bacteria, check out our informational brochure found HERE.

 

 

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