The Advantages Of Automated Meter Reading


Within the last three decades, but predominantly in the last two decades, smart meters have become the meter of choice for most utilities around the country. Without smart meter technology, utility companies had to employ meter readers, who in turn had to visit every meter every month to obtain the reading for billing purposes.

Not only was this costly, as the utility had to pay for the labor, the vehicles and the fuel to drive around the entire city, municipality or county, but there were a lot of errors. Human error in reading the meters, switching or flipping numbers when making the recording or even mistakes in keying in information on computerized devices all created problems for the billing department.

To avoid costs, many companies modified from monthly readings to alternating between months of reading and months of estimation of use. This also led to complicated billing as there had to be adjustments made when estimations were inaccurate.

The Solution

The solution was to use smart meters offering automated meter reading. These meters send a short transmission, just milliseconds in length, to a collector station located within a geographic area.

This provides the utility or billing service with an exact automated meter reading one or more times per day. With the data automatically entered into billing databases, human error is eliminated.

Additionally, these automated meter reading systems can be set up to provide alerts when readings come in and are outside a pre-set range. This will allow landlords, property owners, and billing companies to immediately see the spike in usage and notify the correct individual about the issue.

This can be instrumental in detecting a sudden leak in a single unit in an apartment complex as well as for a commercial property. This is not only going to save money for the tenant, but it will also prevent further damage if the leak went undetected.

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