Question #1

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Q&A

How is the smart meter information transmitted?

When data is collected from a meter and transmitted wirelessly to the utility, the data contains specific unique identifiers associated with the customers meter number and service address.

These fields are validated numerous times to ensure accuracy before the data is used for billing. This process is similar to the cell phone technology where each cell phone has a unique number that goes with every communication which is used to identify a cell tower and connect your call to the correct location

How can I use less energy with my smart home?

Smart home devices can play a major role in helping you create a more energy-efficient home. For example, smart LED light bulbs use at least 75 percent less energy and last 25 times longer than incandescent bulbs. They can also be dimmed or turned off remotely to save even more energy. Smart thermostats can save you between 10-20 percent on heating and cooling costs, a major source of home energy use. You can also identify potential issues with your HVAC, sparing you significant costs down the road. In addition, smart plugs/power strips can reduce standby power (when appliances use energy even when turned off). Standby power can account for up to 10 percent of your home’s total energy use.

Will a smart meter give my utility control over how and when I use energy?

No. Actually, you control your usage, not the utility. Advanced metering gives you more control. Participating in residential energy management and other energy efficiency programs is completely optional. Customers who participate can use the information they receive to manage their energy usage day by day. Or, they can set preferences (select a maximum temperature for air conditioning, for instance) and let the system automatically make adjustments based on the cost or availability of energy. Either way, the customer is in complete control and will have the option to override signals or not participate in energy-efficiency programs at all.

The smart meter takes frequent readings of your energy usage, but it only measures the electricity used in your household, it does not control it. If you have opted in to a program such as a PeakRewards program, your smart meter will not change how this program operates. The utility will continue to cycle air conditioner compressors and hot water heaters on and off as needed during peak usage times, the same as when you first signed on to this program. In the future, the smart meters will enable utilities to remotely turn service on and off at customer premises. This feature will be used when customers move out of their current homes and start service elsewhere. This cost effective feature eliminates the need for a utility field visit when customers move or start service. The remote connect feature will also enable the utility to place customers back into service more expeditiously.​

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