Smart meters could help you understand your power usage


Confusion reigns supreme with some over BC Hydro’s planned and ongoing installation of smart meters.


Confusion reigns supreme with some over BC Hydro’s planned and ongoing installation of smart meters.

When I was a child, stepping away from electricity for a moment, I recall how gasoline was once sold. Gas was pumped by hand lever, out of an underground storage container into an upper, tall, glass cylinder. When this cylinder was full it indicated that the cylinder contained 10 gallons of gas. Gravity then allowed these 10 gallons to flow into our vehicle’s storage tank. The problem with this system was that an operator could pump, say nine and half gallons of cold, underground stored gas. The sun would then warm the gas in the glass cylinder and expand the gas to the full 10-gallon mark. I have heard few, if any, people complain about the changes in technology of today’s vehicle fuel-delivery system.

One of the complaints I hear about smart meters is that they will be transmitting a signal; this signal to some is a danger and a hazard to our health. In today’s technological world, it is impossible to count the many devices that could be set up in our living rooms and receive signals from outside sources: television, radio, both FM and AM, short wave, long wave, cellphones, Wi-Fi, police, ambulance, airlines, airplanes, satellites, industry, the list is endless, and we are going to lose sleep over a smart meter emitting a random intermittent signal.

So how can you and I save money with smart meters? Almost every appliance we purchase indicates in kilowatts, the amount of power that the appliance uses in normal operation. If you were to check the rating on your dryer, and then read your meter with only this appliance turned on, and the reading was higher than the rating, possibly you need to check your dryer vent for accumulation of lint that might be restricting your dryer’s air flow. Such knowledge could not only help you reduce your power bill but also prevent a dangerous fire.

Doug Wilson

Williams Lake

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