Best Practices that encourage Smart Metering in India

Smart Metering

Best Practices that encourage Smart Metering in India

Indian Government has been taking up forward-looking initiatives in all aspects of governance. The long term ‘Smart Cities’ and ‘Make in India’ projects are planned to place India among the world’s developed countries. As we see, our country is developing under ministries, and the power sector is changing conventional meters to smart meters. Due to the present power supply method and metering practices, we have seen a lack of transparency and discontinuous power supply. With the development of technology, Smart Meters have been deployed in India as well. The government is targeting the lakhs of smart meter installment across the country.

What Is Smart Metering?

A smart meter is an innovative device that is built to calculate and record electricity consumption, voltage, current, and other power related information. The device can be installed for domestic and commercial use. This helps maintain the transparency of electricity consumption and electricity bill between the consumers and the electricity board. A smart meter needs a smart grid system that enables two-way communication between the utility and consumers.

What are the problems with the traditional metering system?

For years we have been using traditional meters, and there have been numerous complaints from the consumers. The electricity board has also incurred heavy losses due to a lack of transparency.

  • Payment collection based on traditional meter records was not transparent. We have seen the case of an unfair electricity bill incurred.
  • Energy theft was the major issue with the traditional meter as the old meter was inefficient to record or detect energy theft. This was a significant loss for the consumer and the electricity board.
  • The photographs’ quality was poor in the old meters, and the printed bill was very consuming at times. This has always been the point of distrust between the consumer and the provider.
  • Reading errors was also the issue that bothered most of the stakeholders. Many instances recorded where readings were misread, and the wrong bill was sent to the consumer.  
  • The old meters did not record essential details like the voltage, power consumption, etc.  

Benefits of Smart Metering 

There are multiple benefits of smart energy meters in the present time. It has evolved the meter reading process in India. There are two types of energy meter, electromechanical and electronic energy meter. The benefits of the smart meter are listed below: 

  • Energy Saving
  • Revenue protection
  • Quality Control
  • Billing Efficiency
  • Expenditure Reduction
  • Compliance with Regulatory Requirements
  • Consumer Satisfaction
  • Transparency 

Best Practices that encourage smart metering

  • Safety

Safety is the prime importance when it comes to electricity. Ensure that you are operating the meter wearing all the protective gear and shock absorbers. Smart meters use a digital checklist for ensuring every step of completion. 

  • Site location

Generally, the site location of the meter is something we do not think about. We rely on the person who installs it. However, it is always good to find the best place for fixed your new smart meter. Ensure that you put a protective seal and place it where it does not experience extreme weather conditions. Place it away from any water source. Keeping all these in mind will make your smart meter safe for an extended period.

  • Handling Smart Meter App

The significant change in shifting from conventional meters to smart meters is the stronger bridge between utility and consumers. After you have decided on the location for your new meter, it needs to get installed. Post-installation, you are required to download the app for any further meter related details. It would be best if you kept updating the app from time to time.

  • Billing

Every consumer requires the transparency of electricity billing. With the installing of smart meter and downloading the app, electricity billing has become very easy. You can see the monthly and daily electricity consumption pay accordingly. Many states have started installing smart meters, but Bihar is the first state that installed more than 28000 smart meters. If you stay in the region and NBPDCL (North Bihar Power Distribution Company Limited) supplies power to your house, you can make nbpdcl bill payment using various online platforms. Make sure you recharge your meter to avoid the power disconnect.

  • Accountability

The smart meter app powered by the electricity supplying agency is also great to keep you accountable. In theory, we have read and learned that energy consumption is a step towards a greener planet. However, in our practical life, we do not much think of the ways to save energy. The app shows you the graphs and statics of how you have been using the power in your house. Therefore, you can read the graph and realize where you have been consuming energy more than required. 

  • Testing

The smart meter does not only record your energy consumption but also all the essential details like voltage testing, visual checks, etc. Most importantly, it also tests if there is any electricity theft. This issue has bothered the consumers and the electricity boards for decades, but no solution was full proof. Now the meter app seems to be the solution. It is significant in detecting electricity theft.

  • Reporting

Using the Smart meter app, you can easily connect to customer care for any assistance. You need not go to the electricity department and wait for hours to enquire and complain. Now report any malfunctioning for the meter or visual errors directly to the customer care number.

Conclusion

In this developing era, when our power meters and power supply are undergoing up-gradation, we see the change in consumer behavior. The rapidly evolving nation and its growing energy demand have welcomed the smart meter installation in India. This blog explains all about smart metering, its advantages, and the best practices for using smart meters. We hope this blog was helpful to you. 

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