smart meters

Re: smart meters

PostBy: LsFarm On: Wed Mar 14, 2012 10:37 am

Hi Chris, good to 'hear' from you.

So in the past, with an analog meter, an electric motor was a bargain? since it's power factor was low,, the meter didn't read it 'correctly'..
and now the 'smart meter' corrects this and charges more , aka my ghost KWHs ??

What I don't get in this, is is the power company actually producing more power than the meter is reading? or is this just another way for the
power company to charge more?
One of the big gripes is that my bill still shows a charge for a meter reader.. even though they don't exist anymore.. DTE is still collecting this money
and it's huge dollars.. not much on my bill, but multiply it times the number of customers.. and it's huge..

It's like the old 'Christmas Scam' DTE would never read the meter for December or January.. they had excuses,, meter readers on vacation, deep snow etc etc. so they'd 'estimate' a bill for those two months.. and, you guessed it.. it was usually 30% higher than November or the last year's bill [correctly adjusted].

I raised hell many times, and told them they can estimate all they want, but don't estimate higher than the previous month.. and I'll make up the difference.. I don't want my bill raised to support a fat bank account at DTE.. at the time, it was easily a $60 MILLION dollar overcharge of the consumers during this period of time.. then they'd 'credit' the overpayments toward the February and March bills..

I'm thinking more and more to dig out one of those lumps in my mattress, and put up a solar array, and wean myself from 'the wire' as much as possible.

I've been able to cut my daily use by half, buy shutting down my barn heat, and shut off my barnyard night light.. but that's only good for now,, what happens when it gets cold again?? or I need to have night security lighting??

Greg L.
LsFarm
 
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: coalnewbie On: Wed Mar 14, 2012 5:12 pm

I need to have night security lighting??


Get a bull mastiff, find a mean one from the animal shelter and legally license him of course with all the shots and then let him loose. Run the loader into the meter by accident and put a "beware nasty vicious dog" on the gate and warm up the video camera for your coal buddies. Well, you granted reasonable access. Then love the dog for the rest of his life - he earned it. Don't forget the three ata boys - we all love encouragement.
coalnewbie
 
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: rberq On: Wed Mar 14, 2012 7:19 pm

LsFarm wrote:DTE would never read the meter for December or January.. they had excuses,, meter readers on vacation, deep snow etc etc. so they'd 'estimate' a bill for those two months..

Yeah, one winter our company sent me a letter saying there was an "obstacle" in front of my meter, and I should remove it. Of course Mother Nature removed it in the spring just like always.
rberq
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: franco b On: Wed Mar 14, 2012 9:59 pm

I don't have a smart meter but have a miraculous meter reader who can read the meter without leaving footprints in the snow.
franco b
 
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: rockwood On: Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:19 pm

Meter readers used to frequently use binoculars to read meters. They would read the meter from the street if they could or walk to a point where they could stand at a distance and read them without walking all the way to the meter... Don't know if they still do that though.
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: CapeCoaler On: Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:47 am

No the old meters just let it go because they had all the 'free' electric from the nuke plants and they didn't have to charge for it...
No the greenies have shut the free ride down...
and you have to repent for your past electric sins...

Does your power co pay you for excess energy or just zero out your bills like Freddy...
CapeCoaler
 
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: Yanche On: Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:24 pm

LsFarm wrote:So in the past, with an analog meter, an electric motor was a bargain? since it's power factor was low,, the meter didn't read it 'correctly'..
and now the 'smart meter' corrects this and charges more , aka my ghost KWHs ??

What I don't get in this, is is the power company actually producing more power than the meter is reading? or is this just another way for the
power company to charge more?
Greg L.

With the old rotary dial induction, non smart meter only the "real" power (power dissipated in a resistive load) could be measured. This was a limit of the meter technology. For residential rate schedules set by your regulating agency the price you pay was adjusted up to include the utilities cost in producing all the power, even though they measured only resistive power (power factor =1)

Yes, the utility company has to generate all the power, it costs them money to do so. Also with low power factors it can harm their equipment and upset the functioning of safety trip circuits.

You need to get the technical specs on your smart meter and determine what it measures, Just KW (kilo watts, resistive power) or also KWR (kilo watt reactive). After you know this you need to know what your state's power regulating agency permits the utility company to charge for. Resistive only, or both and is there premium for low power factor. This premium usually only applies to industrial companies, not residential.

To provide a simple analogy in airplane flying terms. You want to fly from point A to point B. It takes a certain power (fuel consumption), but you have a side wind, it blows you off course. You need to apply more power (greater fuel consumption) to get there. The more power needed is a measure of the ghost (reactive) power. It does you no useful work, getting you to where you want to go, but it costs you. Just like the airplane has to produce the power so does the electric utility company. Obviously it does no one any good. In the past small loads with poor power factors were ignored. Now all regulatory specifications require near unity power factor. Your modern electronics has active power factor correction circuits in it.
Yanche
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Alternate Heating Systems S-130
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Pea

Re: smart meters

PostBy: gaw On: Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:29 pm

I guess I have a smart meter. A few years ago the power company said they would be replacing meters with ones that could be read remotely. If your base was satisfactory at the time all was good, if not you would be required to make necessary repairs or upgrades. The only way I found out that the meter was replaced was by the new green seal that replaced the old grey one. The new meter looks almost like the old one; it has the clock like dials and is made by Duncan, Landis & Gyr. Knock on wood, but my usage has gone down since then, not necessarily my bill but the kilowatt hours have gone down but maybe I’m conserving more I don’t know, I use what I need when I need it and leave things off when not in use.
gaw
 
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: freetown fred On: Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:50 pm

And that's the way it's done gaw my friend. I got friends that leave thier houses lit up like Disney World & do nothing but whine about thier elec bill. My kids were all raised being responsible in the energy area & have thanked me more then once for being the old grump that I am. ;) Unfortunatly we have become a society of very wasteful people. Oh well :( Everybody pays for ignorance.
freetown fred
 
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: coalnewbie On: Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:29 pm

Oh well Everybody pays for ignorance.
... and no wasting kerosene you ol' fart. I want that Tilley lamp out by 10PM - do ya hear? I saw that 42" TV in the bedroom you profligate! My great grandfather used to run a lighthouse and his day started by pumping the generator (or something) 2000 times to provide the power for the light. I am not sure how that worked but if our youngsters did that they would use less power. It was the basis for a very successful marriage, they never saw each other.
coalnewbie
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: LL AnthraKing 180K, Pocono110K,KStokr 90K, DVC
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: Rob R. On: Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:37 pm

I heard a good one today, a co-worker said it is the "Y" chromosome that enables someone to turn a light switch OFF. I don't know if that is the case everywhere, but it sure rings true in my house. :lol:
Rob R.
 
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: Yanche On: Thu Mar 15, 2012 8:26 pm

I like "009to090"s suggestion to install your own power meter. Since you will have it installed on your side of the power companies meter you are completely responsible for the costs and installation. An licensed electrician would pull the power companies meter to kill the power, complete the installation and then plug the power companies meter back in. In effect the power meter is a knife switch plug. The power company will then come out inspect their side of the wiring and put a new seal on their meter.

I've been considering having an whole house dis-conect switch installed, the style that's part of the meter box. Turning it off will make sure there is no possible back feed when using a generator. A second power meter that you own would have the same functionality. Just turn off all the loads and pull your meter. I would expect there is some insulated cover plate available to prevent access to the remaining hot lines. Given the ability to completely, safely kill power would allow you to safely put additional power meters on branch circuits. The Ebay links for power meters posted by "009to090" are significantly cheaper than a whole house disconnect switch. If you do this be sure to do it safely and follow all electrical codes. In my area I can get an homeowners electrical permit and inspection. Use a licensed electrician for the first meter install, they will be the only ones authorized to pull and replace the power companies meter. At least that's the case with my electric utility. As they say your mileage may vary.
Yanche
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Alternate Heating Systems S-130
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: lsayre On: Sat Mar 17, 2012 7:55 am

CIA director David Petraeus has said that the rise of new “smart” gadgets means that Americans are effectively bugging their own homes, saving US spy agencies a job when it identifies any “persons of interest”.

http://www.infowars.com/cia-head-we-will-spy-on-americans-through-electrical-appliances/

http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/03/petraeus-tv-remote/
lsayre
 
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Re: smart meters

PostBy: Yanche On: Sat Mar 17, 2012 3:41 pm

lsayre wrote:CIA director David Petraeus has said that the rise of new “smart” gadgets means that Americans are effectively bugging their own homes, saving US spy agencies a job when it identifies any “persons of interest”.

http://www.infowars.com/cia-head-we-will-spy-on-americans-through-electrical-appliances/

http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/03/petraeus-tv-remote/

The person who manages to do what's suggested in the two links will win the Nobel Prize for Physics. There is just not enough energy in the meter or control devices. Just shows how dumb someone without a STEM education can be on the Law of Physics.
Yanche
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Alternate Heating Systems S-130
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Pea

Re: smart meters

PostBy: lsayre On: Sat Mar 17, 2012 4:06 pm

It's the monitoring aspect that scares me. Smart meter technology is still in its infancy. Let's wait until generation 2 and 3 come around and its too late to stop the invasion of privacy monster, or rally against it at generation 1 when we still have a fighting chance.
lsayre
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AHS S130 Coal Gun
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