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Must be the time of the year,
After loft insulation we are now being bombarded by mail and e-mail
with demands to have smart meters fitted.
1. Is it compulsory ?
2. Are they any good ?
3. Do they save me money ?
Would be grateful for your thouights
 

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Unless these Smart Meters can be be proven to be for our benefit, I will still continue to go out and read my own Meters,then I know there can be no discrepencies. They will eventually become compulsory George so until then stick to what you know.
 

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1. They are not compulsory but your energy supplier might try to persuade you to have one fitted. I changed supplier in March and EON would not give me the best deal with out having a smart meter fitted so I did not use them. As to do they save you money the jury is out on that one, I did a bit of research and I could not find any convincing evidence.

The one thing against them is that some energy companies meters are not compatible with other energy companies equipment so it would be difficult to change. They are hoping to have a smart meter that is compatible with all energy suppliers in the future so I will wait till that happens..

Cheers Frank
 

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1. They are not compulsory.

2. They cannot save you money - they can only measure and display your usage to a higher degree of detail than your old 'unsmart' meter. It is up to you if you wish to stop using, or reduce the usage of, some equipment or facility that has high consumption.

3. They submit your consumption details to directly to your electrical supplier who makes savings since they no longer have to employ meter readers to check on your consumption. That saving is not passed directly on to you.

4. The initial design (still being issued by some electricity suppliers) was not interchangeable between all suppliers. If you changed supplier your meter might no longer work and you had to resume submitting readings or pay for a replacement. The second-generation design being introduced is claimed to overcome this problem and there are moves afoot to replace all the original design meters over time.

5. Since the meter communicates with the electrical supplier by means of the mobile radio network, houses in areas with poor radio coverage have experienced total failure of the smart meter to report or inaccurate submissions and therefore incorrect billing.

6. If, regardless of the above, you feel that it is an onerous task to submit your monthly meter readings, or if you are the sort of person that does not appreciate that your tumble drier uses more electricity than your bedside light, then you may feel it helpful to have a meter that provides such information.

This link may help but there is plentyof other information available on the internet - for and against, just Google smart meter problems.
 

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some good answers above....friends in the trade won't have them which is good enough for me. Our meter reader said that out of 40 people he was told to ask ony three agreed......

geoff
 

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Here in Ireland I am called upon to submit a meter reading to the utility every two months using my Internet account with them. The whole exercise takes about five minutes, so it is time that I don't particularly miss. Then, as others here have pointed out, my bog-standard meter in its cupboard out in the porch works for all suppliers and is not specific to one, so I can switch suppliers any time I wish. Therefore, I do not need a smart meter.
I do, however, have an Owl monitor connected to my incoming supply (works off a simple torroidal transformer clipped around the live cable after the meter and a couple of AA batteries). This continually displays my power consumption in KW, the total used since the last reset of the device, and the cost to date. It does it via WiFi so there are no cables to run.
With that I can see in real time what power any appliance in my house is using and do so from any room in my house. I have it sitting on the corner of my desk in my study normally, and it is very useful because it tells me what I want to know, not what the utility company wants to know.
Since here in Rural Ireland we benefit from not infrequent power cuts I have an emergency generator that I can cut in when the supplier cuts out. Because my generator couldn't possibly run all loads in my house if they were all turned on at once, I have another Owl sensor on the generator output so that I can decide minute to minute what appliances I can and can't use during a power cut.
That works for me because it is simple, straight forward, and under my control. So, to the dismay of my utility provider, I will not be taking up their generous offer of a smart meter (that they want me to pay for), or a pre-pay meter that for some unaccountable reason is supposed to save me money!

Here is info on the Owl monitor https://purchase.ie/product/all-products/owl-electricity-monitor. I stress though that I have no interests in that company -- I just buy their products!

I believe that the moral of this story is "If you are happy in your little pile of sh!t keep your mouth (and your wallet) shut!" (Jester)
 

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1) The Government made it compulsory for energy suppliers to reach an arbitrarily set target to install "smart" meters within in a defined time period. This why some suppliers have paid large fines recently.

2) The Government did not make it compulsory for consumers to have one installed. This is why some suppliers have paid large fines recently.

I have been contacted by my own supplier, and others, all claiming to save me money. When I tell them that I live alone, and know exactly which appliances are using electricity, because I switch them on or off, they give up trying to save me money.
 

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We have one fitted, it seems to show only things I don't care about, e.g. I am using less than last month so far, what use is that, I am in a different month.

The meter is still read regularly, the meter reader tells me they have to.

The concern would be if power cuts were implemented to save power at certain times, I believe the newer ones can control your useage (actually, I don't know if I believe it or not, who believes anything these days?)
 

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The real reason why we are encouraged to use smart meters is because in future when demand outstrips supply, domestic users can be cut off by signals sent down the mains supply, thus reserving continuous supply to businesses and hospitals etc.
We know that this situation will arise thanks to the idiocy of the Climate act which determines that fossil fueled electricity must be shut down when renewables are too variable, and insufficient to power the country.
 

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Eon fitted one but it refused to work due to a poor mobile signal. They kept sending me requests to have one fitted after installing the first one that did not work.
It’s a cheeky ploy as you need to phone them at your expense to arrange fit, they obviously get some return from your call.
I attempt to send them a meter reading on last day of every month via their app.
Davie
 

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I'm a gas engineer. I agree with what Ron says in post 4. The other thing to watch is that most suppliers charge a higher daily standing charge for a smart meter than an older meter. At a time I was paying 17p a day for my meter off the arc, a customer showed me his bill at 30p a day. A few days later I got the call asking me to switch. I retold the above story. He 'can't confirm or deny' these facts, but he also 'doesn't disagree with me'.
Watch for the devil in the detail!!
Rob
 

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Here in Ontario the company which supplies the "Hydro" fitted smart meters to all households and it was not a do you wish one but compulsory. The reason was they supplier could reduce consumption to your home when demand was very high. They never shut us off completely but did what was called a brownout. They also fitted a smart thermostat which you could programme.
As is normal with many publicly owned companies it was abandoned a couple of years ago but the meter and controller are still functioning. Ontario Hydro manages to gobble up millions of dollars every year on hair brained schemes always with the promise of lower rates. I beleive in Santa Clause and the Tooth Fairy as we now pay one of the highest rates in North America and are close to having no coal fired pwoer gererating plants in operation.
 

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Must be the time of the year,
After loft insulation we are now being bombarded by mail and e-mail
with demands to have smart meters fitted.
1. Is it compulsory ?
2. Are they any good ?
3. Do they save me money ?
Would be grateful for your thouights
No they are not compulsory. I had an engineer visit me to check for suitability. No good for me as the meter is in the vestibule of my block of flats, and I live on the first floor. Therefore out of range due to the structure of the building.
I later got another visit from another engineer and explained the problem to him, and he understood and went away.
A few months later I got a phone call on the same subject from the electric company, trying hard sell tactics, trying to get me to change. He was quite insistent, and in the end I had to shout him down so I could get a word in, and told him that I wasn't interested, and that I'd been visited before.
I asked if it was compulsory to change, and after asking several times got the reply "No" So I said I didn't want it and not to call again. Which they haven't done.
Rightly or wrongly I'm not interested in chopping and changing my supplier. I just pay what's due, when it's due.

There has been quite a bit in the press recently about some of the disadvantages of swapping suppliers every time the cost varies, and a lot of people are losing out in the long term. So I'm quite happy to stick with my original supplier and not have any hassle or time consuming, and perhaps for me, complicated dealings.

I like to keep things simple, even if it might cost a few bob more, which I don't think it does.
 

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I had one fitted by eon, then changed supplier had to have another smart meter, was told that they work with all gas suppliers.
 

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Old fashioned I have my meter read by the meter reader, last time he called I got all the guff about how good a smart meter was, it appears they must have put their meter readers through a hard sell course so they are now meter readers/salesman.

It was a good opportunity though to let of steam about what I thought of smart meters.

I wish a politician would knock on my door so I could tell he/she what I thought of them as well.
 

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If the power companies can get enough customers on to a smart meter they will then be able to use the real-time data from the meters to micro-manage the supply using similar computer algorithms to those that are used for share dealing nowadays and be able to buy only the near-exact amount required on a minute by minute basis and greatly inflate their profits. This is not really possible if the supply is from a generating station but renewables like wind turbines and solar can be disconnected from the grid instantaneously and to a highly controllable degree ( down to just one turbine disconnect if necessary). So tell them you will only take a smart meter if they give you a 20% CASH refund at year end and see what they say!
 

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Changed supplier about three years ago for dual fuel. They installed two smart meters with my permission at their expense. They neither cost me nor save me any cash. They work seamlessly and I never have to concern myself about readings but I do check them. I don't have a guy calling to read my meters which I regard as a bonus. I inquired about switching and the company I called told me they wouldn't be able to use my "First generation" meters for about two months after switching but they would replace them with "second generation" meters asap. No expense. My current supplier has now dropped my direct debit so I'm staying put meantime. Doesn't pay to think or stress too much about these things. What will be will be.
 

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I keep a weekly log----

---of my gas/power consumption and, should my gas-usage get a bit too high, (power stays relatively the same only varying with seasonal use), I turn the 'stat down. The 'stat is a remote-reading-controlling British Gas R22 (same as a Drayton Digistat +2), working in half-degree increments, with six time-zones and helps me control gas-consumption i.e. money-spent-----well I am a Yorkshire-man!!

I set it at 20C for the 06.00 "start-up" then have it on 19C for all-day use. Should it be a bitterly-cold day I'll tweek the 'stat to 21.05/22.

I've double-glazing and cavity-wall insulation so the place stays warm without too much gas-consumption.

Working-out consumptions.

Power is straightforward being simply 'Units used x cost' divided by 100, (this 'divide by 100' is because 'Units' are in pence), + weekly standing charge.

Gas is a little-more complex!

Units used x 1.02264
x 39.2
Divided by 3.6
Divided by 100
+ Weekly standing charge.
(The 39.2 is the calorific value and is variable. However it doesn't 'vary' by much so I use 39.2 as a bench mark).

I always use a Company offering 1 or 2 year 'Fixed-price' Contract. Initially they tend to be a little pricier than 'Pay-by-use' but level-out by the end of the Contract. Lazy way to do it but much-easier for the weekly working-out! So I don't need/want a Smart Meter!!! Phil
 

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No meters of any kind on any of my services- despite the undertakers doing their utmost to convince me to have them.

I water my garden without running up a bill.

Getting a smart meter will help to make the traditional meter reader redundant.

Give them short shrift if you don't want one.

BW

J(Gleam)(Gleam)
 

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The Department of Energy are now running adverts on TV and radio pushing the installation of smart meters. They must be getting desperate, because a short while ago the ads were saying that a smart meter could save enough energy to brew loads of cups of tea. That obviously didn't work, because their latest theme is to install a smart meter today so that you can save a polar bear tomorrow.
 
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