Smart meters have a digital display and are similar in size to regular meters. Various types and models of smart meters are available, but all of them have the same basic functionality. Using a communications network, the internal antenna present in smart meters sends electricity consumption data to the utility. An external antenna may be required in some cases for improving signals over longer distances and ensuring reliable data transmission. This antenna can be attached on or near the meter box.
Smart meters can also record the energy that you feed back into the distribution network from co-generation sources, such as wind turbines and solar panels.
Smart metering communication technology enables centralized meter reading, so meter readers don’t have to visiting individual premises for data collection. However, your meter may need to be examined occasionally for testing and maintenance.
Today, utilities all over the U.S. are using different approaches for their initial smart grid projects and deployments. Some are going about the task in a gradual manner, while others are taking an aggressive approach deploying multiple functions simultaneously.
Complete transition to smart meters can take several months after meter installation, as there are a many networking components and communications associated with smart metering that should be present to enable communication.
Smart meters let you find out how much energy you are consuming at a certain time; therefore, by using them you can check your energy consumption to reduce your bills.