Finding clever and useful ways to reduce your monthly bills is a crucial step towards saving money in your household. However, in most cases that is usually easier said than done.
Nevertheless, there are ways to accomplish this task. You can change some of your habits regarding the usage of electric energy in the house. Also, one of the more useful ways is to install a smart meter. If you have never used it, you might ask ‘how does a smart meter save you money’? Well, let me tell you!
There are many benefits to installing a smart meter. We will cover them in great detail, but first I wish to give you an overview. Smart meters can:
- provide information about electricity usage
- send readings to your distributor
- show the time of usage
- provide more electricity plans
Furthermore, every smart meter comes with online tools you can use to track your bill records. So, with that in mind, let us analyze these benefits and see how a smart meter saves you money!
Information about electricity usage
Before, if you wished to know how much electricity you spend in your household, you had to wait for the electrician to come and read the meter for you. That usually does not happen on the day you call them, so it can take a while. You are spending valuable time, and with it, the possibility to make some changes in case you are spending too much electricity.
However, with smart meters, you don’t have to wait for an electrician. The handy display on the unit shows all the details you need to see. Since it records your electricity usage, you can see all of that information on the unit. If you notice that you are spending a lot of electricity, you can make some changes and lower the bill.
When are you using most of the electricity?
The biggest issue in every household is not how much electricity is being used, but when it is used. The rate of electricity cost is different from hour to hour. There are three main rates, peak, off-peak, and shoulder.
Peak rate is usually applied in the evening hours, Monday to Friday. That is when electricity costs the most. It is not possible to stay in the house with your light off, and it is logical that the rate will be the highest.
The off-peak rate is when electricity is cheapest. That is why it is the smartest choice to do all chores that require electricity usage overnight or on the weekend, Saturday and Sunday.
The cost of the shoulder rate is somewhere between the peak rate and the off-peak rate. You guessed it, it is applied in the hours during the day, between the peak and the off-peak rates.
With that in mind, you can use the smart meter to know exactly how much electricity you spend in each of these segments. However, here is the catch.
If you don’t use a smart meter, you only have the option of going with the single rate tariff. Single rate electricity plan means that you cannot use peak or off-peak rates, no matter when you use electricity.
But, with installing a smart meter you give yourself an option to pick a different electricity plan, more convenient for your needs. That second tariff is called time of use electricity plan.
It gives you the possibility to use peak and off-peak rates. You should apply these rates if:
- you go out in the evening Monday to Friday
- you use appliances on weekends or during nighttime
- if you stay at home during weekends
It is also important to know that different distributors use more rate plans, these three are just the basic rate plans included in every package.
Smart meter tools
If you install a smart meter, you will get more than just the device. Every instalment includes online portals to track every information you need. Two basic tools for smart meters are:
- in-home display unit
- website portal
In-home display unit
With in-home display units, you can track how much electricity you use at the moment, and also how much is the cost per hour.
That is very useful because you don’t have to wait for the end of the month to find out how much your electricity bill will be. You can read everything from the display.
The website portal is a handy online, easy-to-use application, that provides full usage data for electricity. It can calculate how much electricity you use per day, per week, per month, or per year. This data is very useful because it allows you to track usage and make adjustments if necessary.
Just so you can see all the benefits in one short segment, here is what we covered in this article:
- Smart meters let you read electricity usage in your home.
- They provide electricity plans with more rate options.
- Smart meters teach you how to use electricity in the most affordable way.
- They come with useful tools with usage tracking.
You should know that there are plenty of things you can do to reduce electricity usage. For example, only wash clothes during the night or on weekends, use the eco option on your appliances, etc. However, installing a smart meter makes everything easier, and it gives you even more options to reduce your bills.
Another benefit of smart meters is that they are very useful for relocation. If you are moving to a new house, you are busy with making moving plans and transporting your belongings to your new address. When you move, no one has to come and to your place to read the meter and find out usage data. You can do it yourself with a smart meter!
Every home should have a smart meter
As you can see, a smart meter saves you money in more ways than one. And not only that, it teaches you how to strategically use electricity in your household. The progress of technology brings us new tools every day, and there are many plans for advanced metering infrastructure being developed as we speak. That is why every home should have a smart meter, if not now then in the recent future. There is no reason to spend your money on bills more than it is necessary!