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Topic # 112194 29-Nov-2012 18:35
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I just got a letter in the mail today saying that Empower have decided to install a smart meter at our property in December. (I live in the Manawatu.) Has anyone here had experience with these yet?

The jist of the letter says that the new smart meter uses mobile phone network coverage to transmit one's electricty usage data thru to them.

I hope that it doesn't use more electricity than the old fashioned meters do, since I haven't asked for this to be installed.




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  Reply # 724820 29-Nov-2012 18:51
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DarthKermit: I just got a letter in the mail today saying that Empower have decided to install a smart meter at our property in December. (I live in the Manawatu.) Has anyone here had experience with these yet?

The jist of the letter says that the new smart meter uses mobile phone network coverage to transmit one's electricty usage data thru to them.

I hope that it doesn't use more electricity than the old fashioned meters do, since I haven't asked for this to be installed.


Smart meters transmit their data only once a day, usually at midnight. They won't use any more power than the old style meter. Might even be less.

Retailers/Meter owners can upgrade meters at anytime. There's a requirement can't remember if from the government of the electricity commission, but all meters must be certified by 2015. Rather than checking/repairing every meter, some or all of the retailers are going straight to a smart meter.




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  Reply # 724829 29-Nov-2012 18:59
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They are not really a smart meter at all, no ability at all to connect to the meter to see usage other that what the meter transmits to the retailer and you can view via the web site.

You don't actually have to submit to this new smart meter installation. Remember that the retailer is now saving money by not having to send a meter reader around once ever 2 months, are they going to pass this saving on to you? Bet they arn't.

A while ago I refused the smart meter install as there was no advantage in it for me.

also remember that you own the meter board you can legally deny the power company access to you meter box.

If you do decide to go ahead with the smart meter install, demand a COC this will ensure that the smartmeter install is done by a qualfied electrician.

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 724830 29-Nov-2012 19:07
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Make it difficult for them and you might be having a cold shower, Easy to disconnect power not coming onto land owners property




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  Reply # 724833 29-Nov-2012 19:17
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johnr: Make it difficult for them and you might be having a cold shower, Easy to disconnect power not coming onto land owners property





I'd be more than happy for them to install an actual smart meter, something that has ethernet or modbus or 485, any thing so  the info could be extracted in real time. These are avaliable right now, but the electricity companies have opted for the meters that have the ability to dial out and send power usage.

As far as disconnecting the power, as long as the bill is been paid then they would be hard justified to disconnect the power for any other reason.


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  Reply # 724836 29-Nov-2012 19:20
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johnr: Make it difficult for them and you might be having a cold shower, Easy to disconnect power not coming onto land owners property




I was under the impression that disconnecting a power supply was actually more difficult than ever now, after  the death of a patient at home on life support equipment?
I may be wrong.




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  Reply # 724839 29-Nov-2012 19:27
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MikeSkyrme:
johnr: Make it difficult for them and you might be having a cold shower, Easy to disconnect power not coming onto land owners property




I was under the impression that disconnecting a power supply was actually more difficult than ever now, after  the death of a patient at home on life support equipment?
I may be wrong.


The power company would know if someone needed power for life support equipment

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  Reply # 724853 29-Nov-2012 19:56
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johnr:
MikeSkyrme:
johnr: Make it difficult for them and you might be having a cold shower, Easy to disconnect power not coming onto land owners property




I was under the impression that disconnecting a power supply was actually more difficult than ever now, after  the death of a patient at home on life support equipment?
I may be wrong.


The power company would know if someone needed power for life support equipment


Umm... yes they would, when you are put on this type of life support you are told to make contact with your power company and inform them so your power doesn't accidently get disconnected and in the event of a power failure you are given prioroty repairs.


But if your too dumb to tell your power company your special needs, then maybe it's a good idea to have your life support turned off

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  Reply # 724858 29-Nov-2012 20:04
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About 8 years ago I've looked at remote meter reading but was told I'd have to pay extra for the convenience of not having someone come onto my property.

Last year I got a letter from Mercury (Auckland) saying all meters in my area are being upgraded. I phoned back saying we are in the process of building a new house and the old one will be demolished within a few months of them installing a new meter, so they agreed not to install a new meter.

Mercury has a device (Glow Bug) to show you how much power you are using and if it is peak or off peak, so I'm guessing perhaps this actually interface with the smart meters. But I do not know, to me not worth the money they charge for it. My new meter (in the new house) is labelled as property of Mercury so they can have some RF comms module for this and not supported by other retailer's meters.




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  Reply # 724871 29-Nov-2012 20:29
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Here's a link to what Empower are doing:
www.empower.co.nz/smartconnect




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  Reply # 724888 29-Nov-2012 21:12
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power bill increases with the smart meter.....its always accurate and no bi monthly under estimates or friendly meter reader getting it wrong !

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  Reply # 724895 29-Nov-2012 21:26
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Gooseybhai: power bill increases with the smart meter.....its always accurate and no bi monthly under estimates or friendly meter reader getting it wrong !


power bill doesn't really increase, it samples the electricity being used more often compared to a conventional meter. talking analoque (eg the disc type) vs smart meter.




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  Reply # 724913 29-Nov-2012 22:01
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Analogue spinning disc meters start off running fast and as they age they slow down. They are supposed to be replaced every 10 to 15 years so that the average reading is correct. This comes from a senior engineer at Enermet.

In South Africa there was an elderly lady that used a lot of power but her bill was very small. A number of times her meter was tested and wiring checked, but nothing found. Eventually the technician realised her meter is hidden behind a curtain, a pin is attached to the curtain and there is a tiny hole on the side of the meter. When the curtain is closed the lady puts the pin into the hole where it rests on the disc slowing it down. When the inspector pulls the curtain open the pin pulls out with the curtain and the meter runs as normal. That trick would not work with a smart meter.

There are lots of other tricks for ripple controllers, but they are not yet migrated.

South Africa on the other hand has had electronic pre-pay meters for about 20 years where you buy electricity similar to pre-pay mobile phone air time. It was promoted with cheaper electricity rates because there is no account that customers can default.




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  Reply # 724921 29-Nov-2012 22:09
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I have a smart meter and I find it brilliant to be able to log into the online portal and see usage graphs, albeit with a lag of a couple of days. It certainly helped me to trace my hot water cylinder fault when I first moved in here.

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  Reply # 724987 30-Nov-2012 07:19
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They have a real time readout on the actual meter itself. I find it handy.

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  Reply # 724993 30-Nov-2012 07:48
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Damager:
Gooseybhai: power bill increases with the smart meter.....its always accurate and no bi monthly under estimates or friendly meter reader getting it wrong !


power bill doesn't really increase, it samples the electricity being used more often compared to a conventional meter. talking analoque (eg the disc type) vs smart meter.


It does actually.  Since I've had a smartmeter thye power companies can now charge extra daily costs whenever the generators increase their wholesale price.  With the old meter it was pretty flat over the months.   Most months are pretty much the same  but the price can go up or down by $30 depending what the generators charge.  Mostly it goes up 




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