If you’re of a certain age, you’re probably old enough to remember the “meter man.” This was an employee, often a man, who would come to your house and read your home’s electricity meter, which was usually located right up against the house.
If you were home alone, the meter man may have even given you quite the scare. But smart electricity meters render the meter man all but obsolete.
Smart meters for electrical consumption (or smart electricity meters) are mechanical devices that monitor and report the electrical consumption of a residential or commercial building. This article will define what smart electricity meters are and outline some of their benefits and drawbacks.
What makes smart electricity meters “smart”?
Smart electricity meters can provide two-way communication to and from the device using a variety of different media, including wi-fi. They can also provide more accurate and timelier (almost real-time) data than traditional, analog electric meters without requiring someone to show up and physically check the meter.
Can consumers benefit from using a smart electricity meter?
Yes, there are several benefits to using a smart electricity meter for consumers. The first benefit is that consumers have access to the data detailing how much electricity they’re using. This can allow them to alter how they use their electricity to either lower costs or use the electricity more efficiently.
Another consumer benefit is the level of detail a smart electricity meter provides. Often, consumers were billed by electric companies based on the estimated amount of electricity that they used. This is because it’s not possible to have a meter man read everyone’s electricity meter every month. Smart electricity meters allow consumers to only pay for the electricity that they’ve used.
The third consumer benefit for using smart electricity meters is that they reduce mass power outages and widespread electricity failures. Moreover, if there are blackouts, the electric company can remedy them more quickly because they have access to the relevant data.
Are there any drawbacks for consumers using smart electricity meters?
Unfortunately, yes, there are a few disadvantages. The first disadvantage is that consumers must pay to have these new smart electricity meters installed. Due to the technology involved, these meters usually aren’t cheap either.
Another drawback to using smart electricity meters is the amount and nature of the data that they collect. Some people argue that smart electricity meters border on an invasion of privacy, and they question how the information that is collected will be used.
The final disadvantage to implementing smart electricity meters is that it places the onus on the consumer when it comes to repairs and maintenance. Since there won’t be technicians out to check the meter, consumers themselves will have to monitor the meter and ensure that it’s working as intended.
Call for electrical service today
Knowing what a smart electricity meter is and some of its advantages and disadvantages can be helpful if you ever have one installed on your property. Using smart meters for the monitoring of electrical consumption seems to be the wave of the future and could be in most homes in the next decade or two.
If you notice you’re using electricity inefficiently and would like some tips on how to improve your energy usage, give us a call at Eavenson Electric Co. We’re dedicated to providing you with quality electrical service at an affordable price.
Categorised in: Electrical Contractor
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