Electricity Meters and Reading

Img Source - The Guardian

Are you interested in saving costs on your energy consumption, or are you seeking to learn how to read your electric meters to inform your decision in going for the right energy plan? You should know that a good knowledge of how your electricity meter works give you better insight into how well or bad you are doing in terms of energy consumption.

Also, with this knowledge, you have a better understanding of which plan is going to be most effective for your electric meter. This will further enable you to make a good selection of energy comparison sites, such as Econnex Comparison. If you would like to know how, please read on.

What are electricity meters?

Electricity meters are devices that help you to measure the quantity of electricity that you consume. In Australia, you will find about three types of electricity meters. These are Flat-Rate meters, Interval meters, and Smart meters. Let’s learn more about these meters.

Flat-Rate Meters

These meters are also known as single-rate or accumulation meters. They record energy usage at a single flat as their name suggests and measure the quantity of energy used from the point of installation. Because of their inability to charge at more than one rate, users of these types of meters are unable to make use of different electricity tariffs.

These meters are read by a meter reader every three months. The meter reading taken will appear on your electric bill as a five (5) digit number. However, you can also keep track of your energy use by writing down or snapping the five (5) digit numbers displayed on your meter each month or quarterly every year. You can get your monthly or quarterly usage by subtracting your previous reading from the current reading during these times.

The meters can come in the form of electromechanical or electronic style. If it is electromechanical, simply take note of the number on each of the five dials from left to right, ignoring that small dial labelled 1/10. If its electronic, just press the display buttons and note your readings.

Interval Meters

Every interval meters have an electronic style and measure your energy consumption every 30 minutes. This is why they are called the time of use meters. With these meters, you can enjoy different rates for different times of the day according to your preference. You can check out the Econnex energy comparison site for cheap energy tariffs.

Because of the varied energy usage per time, this means more meter readers will need to come to your house to read the meter readings person. This is done by attaching an optical probe to the meter to download the meter’s data into a portable computer. This data is then validated by the energy distributor’s systems and thereafter sent to every retailer, who then calculates your next bill.

But, you can also read your meter readings as well. You just need to note the number of Kilowatt per hour (KWh) that is displayed. The meter is programmed to show the date and time (EST), and the energy consumes per kilowatt per hour (KWh).

Smart Meters

These meters are the newest and the most advanced types of meters in Australia. They are also known as digital meters and share some similarities with Interval Meters. This includes measuring energy usage every 30-minute interval allowing for a time of use pricing such as off-peak rates. They are regarded as “Smart” because they are often connected to the internet.

Because of this, there is no need for home visitations by meter readers, as meter readings are automatically sent directly to your energy retailer. This ensures that errors due to personal readings measurements are eliminated, and the efficiency of usage pricing is upheld. 

At the same time, however, you can still take the reading yourself to double-check. You can do this by recording the number of kilowatts per hour (KWh) of energy used as displayed on the meter’s digital screen or making use of an in-home display app that is supplied by the energy retailer.

Final Note

Having gone through the various types of meters available, it is advised that you go for the meter that will suitably meet your specific energy needs and that will be most affordable. 

There are various factors to be considered, and most of the time, it depends on your choice. You can check out the Econnex energy comparison site for cheaper energy rates and comparisons to make your decision process easy and informed. 

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