Smart Metering for Utilities

Americans use about 18% of the world’s energy resources through utility consumption. We all use energy every day for lights, charging electronics, cooking, heating, and cooling rooms. Energy makes our lives comfortable. Most of the energy used by Americans originates from nonrenewable energy sources. It is important that we learn to conserve our non-renewable energy resources before it runs out.

To help combat the vast amount of expended resources, many utility providers are changing to an electronic way of meter reading. Gone are the days of utility employees driving around in company vehicles reading every meter in order to bill customers. Smart metering is the most economical way to measure utility usage, and it provides more data for customers to make more informed decisions on their energy usage.

Smart metering is a way of electronically recording utility usage. A smart meter is an electronic device that records a customer’s consumption of a utility and sends the information to the utility supplier for monitoring and billing. Most smart meters record energy hourly consumption and report the information daily.

Smart meters use secure wireless technology to send data from the meter at specific intervals to the utility provider. Customers can then log into a website or mobile phone app and view their energy usage.

All homes and apartments are equipped with meters so that utility companies can determine the amount of usage by a customer. Many residences still have the old analog or digital meters which are required to be read by a meter reader once a month. Monitoring utility usage once a month does not allow customers to track their daily usage. By switching to smart metering, utility providers and customers can track hourly and daily usage to help them make informed choices about using nonrenewable energy resources.

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