Energy Smart Meters.

Discussion in 'OT (OFF Topic) Forums' started by John, May 12, 2018.

  1. John

    John MB Club Veteran

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    So I get a phone call this morning from my supplier saying they wrote to me about Smart Meter installation.

    We get virtually no mobile signal here (I have to use whiffy calling) and I am aware they are incompatible with other providers.

    So I declined.

    However, they said they would have to test the meter as per regulations and replace if necessary.

    I did some reading into it and checking the GOV website did indeed state that domestic meters needed testing within a period of time.

    What's the deal here?

    Are they trying to creatively replace the meter anyway or is it likely that if they find nothing wrong with the existing meter, they will leave it as is?

    I did read that if they do replace, they might replace with a Smart Meter but you can elect to have the smart features disabled.

    I am not really anti-them per se, what annoys me is it doesn't work with every provider and it will become a dumb meter again if I change suppliers.

    I've also read some horror stories although I take these with a pinch of salt.
     
  2. DSM10000

    DSM10000 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I love the "whiffy calling" , most of the 'phone calls we receive on the land lineare BS as well!!!:D:D
     
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  3. artyman

    artyman Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I don't think these meters are smart at all, they don't save you money just tell you how much you are using, it depends on your actions as to whether any savings are made. Anyone with a modicum of intelligence knows that turning up the thermostat is going to use more energy as is leaving lights on. The adverts say fit a smart meter and save money, it is a big con I reckon.
     
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  4. Smart320

    Smart320 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    You do not need to give them permission to change the meter. Suggest you put it in writing that you give them permission to test the meter but do not give them permission to install a smart meter.
    If they say it needs changing demand a detailed report on why the existing meter is defective and demand it is switched like for like. I suspect that no matter what they report your existing meter is perfectly serviceable!
     
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  5. tbourner

    tbourner Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I don't know why so many people are against smart meters. We've had one for years and it's great to be able to see all the history in graphs of our usage, can see how much we saved when we had the kitchen done and got a combi boiler and newer appliances.

    We don't want to change supplier, but any main supplier will fit their own smart meter if you want them to, for free, so you just get a new meter every time you switch if you're so inclined. SMETS2 should be out in the next couple of years anyway which will allow switching. I bet people will still be against them for some bizarre anti-big-brother reason though.
     
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  6. Chrishazle

    Chrishazle Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    2 things wrong with the current type of smart meter ;
    1. It is specific to your current supplier - if you switch suppliers it reverts to being a dumb meter. V2 are supposed to be rolled out this year, but don't hold your breath.
    2. They also do not yet have a smart meter that can handle 3 phase supply - which we happen to have to our house, for some unknown reason! BG actually turned up a year or more ago to install a smart meter, only for their "engineer" to take one look and first say "I can't touch that, I'm not 3 phase qualified" and then say "we don't have 3 phase meters yet and will not for the foreseeable future"!!

    My current supplier (Affect Energy) emails me every month requesting meter readings, so I spreadsheet these and keep track of useage that way - as I've done for decades.
     
  7. toolman1954

    toolman1954 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Early last year, my Electricity supplier had been sending me lots of letters, demanding access to fit a smart meter.
    My electricity meter is down in the cellar, positioned above some storage racks and many other items stacked down there. It took me many hours of shifting stuff ( with my arthritic knees !) to allow full access to the meter, as demanded by their letters.
    The fitter came and was gone in 10 minutes, " Not enough mobile signal down your cellar mate " he said. "The technology is not that good yet " and with that he was gone.
    I was seething, all that work and effort for nothing, if only a site survey had been done before the fitter had come, it would have saved me a time and a lot of effort.

    Steve.
     
  8. Merkaholic

    Merkaholic Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    What suddenly went wrong with the conventional meters?
     
  9. whitenemesis

    whitenemesis MB Club Veteran

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    They require someone to come round and physically read them. Smart meters can be read remotely, ensuring accurate billing.
    AFAIK the meter is the property of the service provider and so they can change it without the householder's permission.
     
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  10. grober

    grober MB Club Veteran

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  11. Headhurts

    Headhurts Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Personally I would love a smart meter but as I am on a dual costing ie off peak the meters are still in testing so I will have to wait.

    My supplier did say that the latest meters should work with all suppliers.

    My meter is buried in a cupboard under the stairs and is a pain to get access.

    Robin
     
  12. Scott_F

    Scott_F Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    But where's the con ?

    I can appreciate that smart meters may give customers a clearer picture of their energy use which may (or may not) result in them saving a small amount of money.

    However, the energy suppliers seem very keen to install them and they are not doing so for the good of your wallet. They only have to read conventional meters once a year anyway so I still don't fully see what's in it for them although there's obviously something.
     
  13. grober

    grober MB Club Veteran

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  14. renault12ts

    renault12ts MB Club Veteran

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    That's just it though...many people just do not know.

    Smart meters are great, I have one. But I should say that I wanted one because being a real anorak I wanted to know how much I was consuming and when. We even have economy 7 tariff even though we don't have economy 7 heating. It was a simple calculation to work out that using only 2 units during those 7 hours resulted in a saving. So, the dishwasher, washing m/c and drier all go on after midnight.

    Even the power company man hadn't worked that out and couldn't understand why we wanted an economy7 tariff.

    Fitting a meter will not save any money, unless it includes a brain upgrade for idiots also.
     
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  15. tbourner

    tbourner Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    1. Efficiency. Removing waste is fundamental in any process to save money, and to align the supply with the demand they need data. Smart meters provide a very fine level of detail of usage.
    2. Competition. Companies need to keep up with each other and with technology. If one's doing it they all need to develop the same technology or they'll be too far behind when smart grids get rolled out.
    3. Smart grids. Smart meters are a stepping stone, and with SMETS2 the idea is they're more universal and can help to progress smart grids - whereby households will finally be able to island themselves if they generate renewables, and can move energy locally whenever and wherever needed, to again remove waste in the transport network.
    4. //edit to add: Government requirement. They have to at least offer them to customers within a set timeframe (which keeps changing).
    Smart grids are where energy companies will need to develop their business models, I've no idea how it will work as more and more local buildings generate electricity; then less will be needed from big power - but that's the future.
     
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  16. DrFeelgood

    DrFeelgood MB Club Veteran

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    Those kids who make a mess up on the beauty spot where I walk in the mornings are ****ing annoying, smart meters less so.
     
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  17. Scott_F

    Scott_F Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I'm not convinced by any argument that says the energy suppliers need to install smart meters (or indeed do anything) in order to keep up with the competition. The "big six" who dominate the market have based their business models on collusion rather than competition for decades.

    However, although I don't pretend to understand the concept of "smart grids", if smart meters are a precursor to the suppliers developing and updating their business models then that would explain their enthusiasm for installing them.

    And let's not forget that although they are "free" at the point of installation, we will pay for them later via increased bills so the whole thing makes even more sense from a supplier's point of view.
     
  18. Smart320

    Smart320 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I read my meter and send the readings to my supplier on line monthly so I can monitor my usage.
    Interestingly was nearly at end of contract at NPower last week and about to sign on with First Electric tariff ( had used them 2 years ago ) but in the terms and conditions was the requirement to have a Smart meter installed within 6 months or revert to Standard ( expensive ! ) tariff.
    Eventually found the Midlands Coop , 2 year fix at very competitive price
     
  19. tbourner

    tbourner Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Maybe I'm just a nerd but I love this kind of thing:

    Lectric.jpg

    Gas.jpg


    1/2 hourly data is just nerd. Monthly is useful to see the difference across the years, daily is the best for reducing your usage.
     
  20. Petrol Pete

    Petrol Pete Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I sincerely hope you are sitting up after midnight watching your dishwasher, washing machine and tumble drier (especially the tumble drier) until they finish their cycles. These things are built down to a price and I for one do not trust them not to burst in to flames at any given moment. There is a lot of evidence that many house fires are caused by this type of appliance, we mostly only hear about the big fires in which someone dies but smaller (not reported) fires are common.
     
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