Smart Energy Meters

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  • I know a couple of ppl with them, they recon it sav s a fortune as they no longer turn the tv on and watch the smart meter instead. The folk with them seem to recon it only saves you money if you work out what is costing you money and do something about it. Like you said turning things of instead of Just stand by. A good tip is to measure a cup of water and only boil that much for your cuppy

  • However it may encourage me to use fewer things.

    A few years ago, when I was on a key meter, I noticed that I saved up to a quid a week when I turned off everything off of standby -- was pretty surprised by that tbh.

    Im in the habit of turning stuff off when not in use anyway. Only things on all the time are virgin cable box, virgin cable modem, router, boiler with stat set low so basically doesnt come on unless freezing) and server. I cant think of anything we could turn off that we dont use..

  • There is some evidence that bills will go up in the future, due to smart meters. When they have figured out those hours in which the most electricity is used, they can start charging you at a premium rate for those hours. They will in effect have users by the short and curlies, because you will be paying most for when you need it most.

    There are also some worries about wireless output right alongside where people may be working, kitchens, for example. The output, cumulatively, of a smart meter is much higher than a cell phone, and is going on all the time, day and night, as the meter not only sends back its own reports, but there is a constant receiving and sending on to and from all other meters in the vicinity, in a piggyback effect. This results in an 'electronic smog', the risk to health effects of which so far have received little scientific study, because, under present laws concerning cell phone radio transmission, there is no need to do so.

  • Another device for focusing your mind on the pointless minutiae of life.

    Pull unnecessary appliance plugs out and get on with your life.

    As Old Keith has pointed out,these devices arent really designed to make consumers more energy conscious and organised in life,its just technology to enable the suppliers to look at consumer habits and useage in intricate detail and look for ways of exploiting your need for energy.

    Theyre energy companies,its not in their commercial interest to get you to reduce the amount of energy you buy from them.

  • The drive to install them doesn't come from energy companies though - I believe it was the government wanting people to reduce the country's energy consumption, or at least that's what they claim.

    Oh yes,of course they do lol...while working hand in hand to ensure fossil fuels industry and nuclear prosper and give govt subsidies to them while slowly strangling the wind and eco energy providers...pfft

    Outside of the City of London finance sector the govts other main income is energy revenue and major employment provider directly and indirectly.They may pay lip service to reducing energy consumption but theyre not really that interested.They just want to change our dependency on energy imports like Russian gas and Saudi oil to reduce balanxe of payments,why do you think theyre pushing the domestic fracking industry for all its worth.

    Tory governments dont work for consumer interests and never have(nor did Labour for that matter).

  • dont beleive the hype ,the reason for smart meters ,isnt to save the customer money ,but to save the provider money , as smart meters put meter readers out of a job ,so no more wage bill for or need for meter readers ,they aim to have everyone on smart meters by 2020,there excuse for fitting them is ,the meters are out of date ,as the meters are the providers property ,its going to be hard to refuse eventual install ,electric meters come first , as the gas meter relies on the electric meter to send signals , i dont think a gas smart meter is any good unless you have the electric installed also

  • From a personal point of view, the one good thing that will come out of it is that i will finally get my gas meter moved. Currently it is in the kitchen under the sink and its position stops me rearranging the units in a better configuration

    I spoke to the gas board about having it moved outside and was quoted £1800! As you arent allowed to fit meters there any more i shall insist that the new meter that they will eventually force on me is installed to comply with current gas regulations and not just swapped.

  • One of the potential future issues with smart meters is going to be the way you get charged for electricity usage. At the moment you are just charged for the true power that goes through the meter. In the future though there is a possibility that electricity companies might start taking into consideration power factor and with smart meters this is perfectly possible and all they will need to do is just make a small change in a database somewhere.

    You might be wondering what power factor is. The appliances we have in our homes are not just made up of resistors, they also have capacitors and inductors as well. Take for example a washing machine: this has a motor in it which is an inductive load. This inductive load changes the AC voltage wave so that it lags. This lag is what the power factor measures.

  • I remember reading awhile back that some consumers are forced to have these smart meters in the States. I hope this kind of totalitarian imposition doesn't take place over here.

    So, as a bit of a kickback as well as a concern for biological damage from almost continuous RF transmissions, some US consumers are using Faraday cages to cut down the RF penetration of their households. One side (outward facing) of the cage is left open, or partially-open, so signals continue to be transmitted to other parts of the network, so the utility company still gets signals. (If these were cut off entirely, they'd probably ring to ask what was wrong with the smart meter, or send someone out to investigate!).

    This situation has given opportunity to some other companies making cheap Faraday cages for the smart meter consumers, and, as in the advert linked below, charging incredible prices for them!

    (Yes, you can make your own Faraday cage from scrap steel or scrap woven steel mesh, for little or no cost).

    By the way, over this side of the pond, the EU has been strongly behind the push to get smart meters installed in every household....…rs/smart-grids-and-meters

  • i dont need a smart meter to tell me what uses the most power and what to cut back on ,iff i want to save gas , i turn off the boiler ,iff i want to save electricity ,i dont put my desktop PC on as much ,simple really

    Yes, same, I've just had this conversation with our energy provider. They asked if I was interested in a smart meter and I told them that I don't understand what the point of them is and what they actually do. The only reasons he came back with are that you can see what you're using and you don't get estimated bills because the meter reading is always accurate. I only use what I need and texting in my meter reading takes less than two minutes so I still don't get the point of them (from my perspective and the chap said he agreed and didn't think they were worth the bother either).

  • If the smart meter introduction was along the lines of 'we want you have one of these in your house, it will give us soooo much useful and useable data on your lifestyle ,it will send us the data automatically and relentlessly but you will be unable to stop it.' the take would have been considerably less than the 'its all for YOU that we are doing this!!' bullshit they are feeding us right now.

    I can check how much I am using by observing the spinny disc in the meter for a few seconds , that has worked for decades though the only time I ever see it is when I take the reading (meaning that I am never fussed about usage, if I am using electricity its for a reason and therefore very unlikely to stop using it because the meter says no ).

    I have a few things that run for 12 hours a day on timers and I would prefer that was not documented by the providers for any reason.

  • Just another step closer to big brother taking over in my view. As has been said,no real benifit to the user. Water meters are the same, Yorkshire water tried to persuade me to have one fitted in a previous gaff saying "it'll save you money mate" I reckon if they were of financial benifit to the customer YWA and the rest wouldn't be pushing them like they do. All new builds have them fitted now so that tells me they aren't worth having!

  • It’s further profiling of the user group. Where statistics will matter more in future supply and demand services. Accurate, real-time information will need to be in the matrix.

    In the past, energy companies have based high usage electricity demand around popular TV viewing, eg. World Cup. Coronation Street, Come dancing, peak demand times have been used to manage online turbine operations.

    Taking that method to manage electricity supply is outdated due to changing social habits. What wasn’t always available to the power generating companies (until manual meter reading time) is how much line energy is stolen or lost to faults. Previously adding up all on-line meter readings and deducting the total figure from the subsatation output reading. Would indicate a loss %. As with water supplies, excepted leakage needs to be addressed to justify high charges to clients and shareholder profits.

    Some meters don’t get a real “true” reading for upto a year when meters are inexessible or in private properties. Delays in bill payments and estimated charging corrections cost staff time and carries negative credit for the energy supplier. Leaving a property with outstanding service charges attached is not uncommon, nor is electricity theft.

    Regarding data collated, it’s just another commodity in the information market. It has a value to more than just the user and energy supplier.

    The metered client gets to see real-time electricity usage and accumalative energy used to date. But this can be gained by simple equipment already provided by most big energy providers over the last few years. Habits need to be addressed regarding wasting energy, but I don’t think these smartmeters are the tool that will achieve this.

    Illegal dope farms should be worried when weekly, monthly energy consumption data is fed into Scotland Yards number cruncher. Like ANPR detect untaxed vehicles. Smart meters could transmit postcodes to Police helicopters inorder to take heat trace readings of properties. Anomalies would then get a visit on foot.

  • I didn't want a smart meter - various reasons (but we've not had a real meter reader around here for years) mainly privacy.

    I'm also concerned about the profile to raise prices when you have no choice but use energy ...

    I'm already stuck with LPG (more expensive fuel) for central & water heating.

    This coming winter, I plan to use the woodburner far more.

  • the only advantage of smart meters ,,is for the advantage of the providers ,it saves them money ,because they dont have to pay the wages of meter readers ,those meters use mobile phone technology ,to send signals and meter readings several times a week ,i wonder how long it will be before the consumer starts being charged ,not just for the gas or lecky ,but also charged for the coveinience ,for the useage of the way these readings are sent ,via mobile phone type tech

  • In the future though there is a possibility that electricity companies might start taking into consideration power factor and with smart meters this is perfectly possible and all they will need to do is just make a small change in a database somewhere.

    They already do take power factor into consideration, a bad power factor will increase your consumption, plus it is only possible to spot that a power factor is the cause when you have a three phase supply, and can compare the loading and phase rotation caused by the inductive and capacative loads, along with the mismatch of the floating neutral, caused by the power factor, out of interest an inductive phase shift is cancelled out by an equivalent capacative load.