If you haven’t heard of them already, you will have by 2020 as this is when all property owners in the UK would have been presented with the opportunity to have one installed. There is a lot of misinformation surrounding smart meters so we intend to clear them up through laying out exactly how they work here in this article.
If you’re interested in having a new smart meter installed or are wondering how they might benefit you, keep reading to find out more.
What is A Smart Meter?
Smart meters are a newer type of meter, capable of providing readings for both electricity and gas. The difference between a smart meter and your existing conventional meter, is that readings are able to be communicated in real time with your utility provider.
In addition, these meters are often interactive meaning that you can see exactly how much energy you’re using at any given time and assess how you could reduce it further.
How Do They Work?
These intelligent meters are not only connected to your home’s energy infrastructure, but also directly to a secure national network known as the DCC. Data is collated and then transmitted via the meters own radio device, much like your mobile phone.
Your utility company then receives these readings and is able to bill you accurately and promptly without the need for quarterly or annual readings.
Some of you might be able to recognise some of the advantages of this technology already. The widely recognised benefits include:
- The ability to better understand your energy usage. Energy consumption figures have typically always been presented in KWH. This term or unit of measurement refers to how much energy a device is able to consume per hour but can be difficult to visualise for a lot of people.
A smart meter breaks this information down much further and into simple terms, often with the use of a graph or display.
- More accurate bills. Most homeowners and tenants often forget to provide a meter reading altogether. In these instances, your usage will be estimated. Sometimes, a representative of the energy company would pay you a visit to read your meter themselves which isn’t always desirable.
- Better energy tariffs. Better customer usage profiles should result in more advanced tariffs that can benefit any bill payer. This has been seen in the past with the introduction of off peak tariffs where energy is cheaper at certain times of the day.
How Do I Obtain One?
There are several ways that you could go about getting a smart meter installed. The most common is to approach your utility provider and see if they are prepared to offer you one. Another alternative is to approach a third party company who can facilitate the process on your behalf. Connections 2 Energy smart meters are widely used and their company generally receives positive feedback. There should be no direct cost to you if you’re upgrading an existing meter.
Smart meters are considered to be the future of any sustainability and we wouldn’t disagree. They may soon become compulsory so consider upgrading yours today.