Pacific Power left a door hanger inviting me to “meet your new smart meter… Go ahead: Take a look.” So I did. And now I wish that along with the door hanger, the installer had left instructions on what the readouts on the meter mean.
As you can see in the video, the display changes every few seconds. The readings may be self-evident to the electric company, but they’re a puzzle to me.
I gather that the displays have something to do with how much electricity is being and has been used inside the house. But I doubt that since the meter was installed a few hours ago, the house used up something like 888,888 kilowatt hours of juice. So that big number must mean something else.
The same for the bunch of zeroes followed by a 1. One what?
Every few seconds, the meter cycles back and announces: “CLOSEd.” What? PP&L is out of juice? Can’t be, because my desk lamp is still on.
This meter is smart because, among other things, no one is supposed to have to come around to read it once a month. It will beam consumption data to the company via a radio hookup on a nearby pole. Wait — we don’t have poles because the wires are underground. There’s another puzzle.
Switching electric meters would normally be the most mundane kind of thing. Nice of the power company to add a little mystery to the event. (hh)