[A] Check if your home already has a ‘smart meter’:
The traditional meter is known as an ‘analog meter’, is mechanical in nature and shows clock like dials on its face. The appearance of smart meters differs from the traditional meter in that displays are digital. There are no dials. However the utilities also have a type of meter that is digital and that does not use radio waves. Whether these meters should be classed as ‘smart meters’ is an open question. The answer would depend on whether these meters have the ability to record and store granular usage data. It should also be borne in mind that once a new style digital meter is installed the capabilities of that meter can be upgraded at any time just by plugging in an upgrade module. In some cases the capabilities of the ‘meter’ can be upgraded by remote control. The utility sends a signal to the meter to ‘turn on’ new capabilities after the original install – and after they have told you what the meter does or does not do! To be secure against the new surveillance technology it is necessary to keep your analog meter or to get it back if it has been taken from your home.
[B] Protect your analog meter (if you still have it):
Do not allow your analog meter to be replaced with a ‘smart’ meter. It is easier to defend your analog meter than it is to get one back after a ‘smart’ meter has been installed. Do the following:
- Post a very conspicuous sign right next to your meter stating “I DO NOT CONSENT TO THE REPLACEMENT OF THIS METER WITH A SO CALLED ‘SMART METER’.
- Make it difficult for an installer to sneak onto your property and replace your safe analog meter with one of the new ‘smart’ or ‘advanced’ meters. In the past we have recommended putting a padlock through the loop at bottom of meter housing. Recently, since the latter part of 2013, we have found at least one Michigan utility becoming quite aggressive about cutting off padlocks, or cutting off the loop, in order to defeat such protections. We now are recommending a new method of protecting your meter. <More>
- Write a letter to your utility company stating that your refuse to accept a ‘smart’ meter’ installation on your home – and that your refusal is based on health, safety and privacy factors. Send the letter by certified mail, return receipt.
[C] Restore your analog meter:
If your analog meter has already been taken away and replaced with a ‘smart meter’ or digital meter you should:
- Write a letter to your utility company stating that you will not have a ‘smart meter’ or upgradeable digital meter on your home. Point out that the meter was installed without your knowledge or consent. Demand its removal and the return of an analog (mechanical) meter. Give the utility a reasonable amount of time in which to comply with your demand (suggest 14 days).
- If the meter has not been changed within this time period and no one has contacted you to set a date certain when your meter will be restored, we think you are entitled to resort to self-help in defense of your property, your privacy and your health and safety.
- Self help would consist in you purchasing an analog meter (they are available online at very reasonable cost) and arranging with an electrician or other qualified person to remove the smart meter and install your own analog meter in its place. Do not do this yourself if you lack electrical knowledge or experience. There is a risk of electrocution, damage to meter socket or burns from sparks if this procedure is not done correctly or if proper protective clothing is not worn.
- If you replace your own meter be sure to record the last reading on the smart meter, the initial reading on your own meter, and notify the utility the same day that you have done this. In cases where people have done this the utility often will send someone out very quickly to replace the homeowner’s meter with an analog meter of their own design.
Video – How to replace your own meter, with appropriate cautions, and information on where to buy an analog meter. Click here.
[D] If You Are Not Brave Enough to Replace Your Own Meter:
Try this simple “Smart Meter Blocker” kit.
[E] Dirty Electricity:
Replacing your smart meter with an analog meter you purchased may still leave you with dirty electricity on your home wiring caused by the smart meters installed on your neighbor’s houses. To resolve this problem you may need to purchase and install Stetzer filters.
Stetzer Electric, Inc.