I was wonder if you can put a water meter inline on the first generation to have more accurate water useage
Yes, a flow meter can be installed in a valve box after the backflow preventer. It will give you a total. Here is an example: Hunter Flow Meter
There are others on the market. The main flow meter manufacturers are Badger and McCrometer. They manufacture meters for irrigation manufacturers. It would be cost prohibitive to install a flow meter on every zone.
These are generally not cheap, but they are accurate. You will need to use Schedule 80 fittings to connect PVC to metal.
Does it hook up to the generation 1 control box
No. You just install a flow meter in the ground after the backline and read the flow. For a controller To actually read the flow on a controller is only available with expensive central control systems for golf courses or large commercial operations. It’s simply not available at the residential market. A flow meter is just like the meter on your home.
@allstar002 You can connect a flow sensor to a generation 2 Rachio controller, but not a generation 1. Please check out this article and follow the instructions to join the beta group if you’d like to install one:
How can you tap into the city database since they keep track of my water usage bu the hours and you can go online and see these #'s in an excel spreadsheet
Tapping in to a citys utility database will never be allowed, but you can obviously look at your account, past bill and start building your own database. If for some reason you live somewhere that still uses ccf instead of gallons, you will need to convert.