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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Karl
    • By MSE Karl 31st Oct 17, 5:13 PM
    • 42Posts
    • 10Thanks
    MSE Karl
    Smart Meters
    • #1
    • 31st Oct 17, 5:13 PM
    Smart Meters 31st Oct 17 at 5:13 PM
    Hi!

    This is the discussion thread for the


    Click reply below to discuss. If you haven’t already, join the forum to reply.
    Last edited by MSE Andrea; 09-11-2017 at 2:25 PM.
Page 11
    • House Martin
    • By House Martin 29th Dec 17, 2:13 PM
    • 941 Posts
    • 830 Thanks
    House Martin
    I very much doubt that ANY of the current energy suppliers are capable of "getting it right" for all their customer's. I doubt that they ever will be. It is past time that the industry got a major overhaul as I can't see any of them as being capable "safe hands". Look at Scottish Power's 40p per day standing charge -Isn't that the customer being forced to pay for their failed smart meter roll out? How much more of these rip offs are we going to be prepared to tolerate.
    Originally posted by badmemory
    Its not really anything to do with the smart meter roll out at all.
    Its a simple enough procedure to input your annual usage into a comp site and let the comp do the sums.. Ignore the s.c. and go for the lowest yearly amount.
    Eg Ebico have even higher standing charges, I think it was over 50 p a day but for my old vacant property it was the cheapest supplier by far saving me almost £15 a month in s.c. alone
    • badmemory
    • By badmemory 29th Dec 17, 2:52 PM
    • 1,236 Posts
    • 1,346 Thanks
    badmemory
    For clarity I am not actually paying 40p per day. I have been on a long fix with them & that is what it would go up to if I was foolish enough to stay, the increase in the unit prices is also very large. In fact their new best tariff is very little below their SVR, or is this because I am/was an old customer?
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 29th Dec 17, 7:43 PM
    • 3,950 Posts
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    zeupater
    Getting rid of SCs would mean people with high usage would be subsidising low users. Not sure this is a good idea in the commercial sector.

    Those high users could be mums with babies in nappies, or pensioners who need to keep the heating turned up. Should they be subsidising a working couple who are out all day?
    Originally posted by Nick_C
    Hi

    Again, possibly ... but everyone needs an incentive to increase energy efficiency if carbon emissions are to be seriously reduced ... the perverse element that fixed cost recovery through standing charges introduces a counterproductive energy pricing model - when all costs are taken into account, the more energy that is used, the cheaper the price per unit .... not really a good incentive to meet the efficiency & reduction targets that the government have signed-up to ...

    You mention high users would be subsidising low users ... well, in most cases that'd be down to choice & ability - people can choose to not employ efficiency measures and heat every room to ridiculously high temperatures, or they can take what can be the cheap option, improve insulation & heat rooms to levels appropriate to their level of usage ... if the incentive to get-up and start making a difference needs to be a little financial pain then let it be.

    As for pensioners, new mums & the vulnerable, there are support schemes which already cover this such as winter fuel allowance, warm-front, child benefit, subsidised efficiency improvement support etc etc etc .... that's what they're for. Commercial & industrial charges are different and can be treated as so, applying a different set of efficiency incentives. Higher usage commercial/industrial sites have been metered & charged on a different basis for years, with particular regard given to consumption and plant & process power factors on a time of use basis, applying punitive rates on a TOU/PF basis, something which, of course, will continue outside the scope of domestic smart-metering.

    The main issue missed is that improving competition through improving price transparency reduces prices, whereas convoluted schemes & ideas designed to drive energy efficiency, such as smart-metering, whilst purporting to save money, actually add cost too, that's literally hundreds of pounds of cost to every household ... a simple idea such as national pricing with no standing charge adds no cost whatsoever, neither to the supply industry or the consumer, but the price transparency would provide the spark which is necessary to drive competition and to the industry that means compete to survive.

    Competition & major players in the energy sector are both on the cusp of a major shake-up, those who adapt to change will survive, others will be subject to mergers & acquisitions & some will inevitably fail ... the next 15 years-or-so will be interesting times in the energy & associated sectors as major international players reinvent/transform their respective business models ...

    HTH
    Z
    Last edited by zeupater; 29-12-2017 at 7:46 PM.
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • Mattandjo
    • By Mattandjo 31st Dec 17, 8:51 AM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Mattandjo
    I am new to this whole forum malarkey. Hoping someone can advise.
    British Gas kindly offered to install Landis smart meters for gas and electric a while back. We have since changed suppliers (we're part of the MSE cheap energy club) and have subsequently developed concerns about the possible health impact of the smart meters. The new company doesn't use the smart meter functionality and we still supply readings, so my question to anyone out there is: can the Wi-Fi transmitters be disabled so that were no longer subject to the worrying levels of radio waves emissions?
    • Hengus
    • By Hengus 31st Dec 17, 9:14 AM
    • 4,878 Posts
    • 2,986 Thanks
    Hengus
    I am new to this whole forum malarkey. Hoping someone can advise.
    British Gas kindly offered to install Landis smart meters for gas and electric a while back. We have since changed suppliers (we're part of the MSE cheap energy club) and have subsequently developed concerns about the possible health impact of the smart meters. The new company doesn't use the smart meter functionality and we still supply readings, so my question to anyone out there is: can the Wi-Fi transmitters be disabled so that were no longer subject to the worrying levels of radio waves emissions?
    Originally posted by Mattandjo
    The communications unit can be disabled on all smart meters but I doubt that your new supplier will be able to do this for you. That said, there is absolutely no evidence that smart meters are in anyway more of a health problem than mobile phones or wifi routers.

    https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-causes/radiation-exposure/smart-meters.html

    Looking at my router stats this morning, I can see that there are 38 wifi networks being detected in my home. This will increase with the next generation of smart meters that will use a wide area network to connect back to the The Data Communications Company. In other words, unless you surround your home with a Faraday Cage, you are going to be exposed to even more wifi come what may.
    • matelodave
    • By matelodave 31st Dec 17, 9:35 AM
    • 3,286 Posts
    • 1,996 Thanks
    matelodave
    I am new to this whole forum malarkey. Hoping someone can advise.
    British Gas kindly offered to install Landis smart meters for gas and electric a while back. We have since changed suppliers (we're part of the MSE cheap energy club) and have subsequently developed concerns about the possible health impact of the smart meters. The new company doesn't use the smart meter functionality and we still supply readings, so my question to anyone out there is: can the Wi-Fi transmitters be disabled so that were no longer subject to the worrying levels of radio waves emissions?
    Originally posted by Mattandjo
    Where have you got that from?

    I'm guessing that you've got a mobile phone which you hold up to your head and keep in a pocket or handbag which is actually transmitting all the time - not just when you make a phone call.

    Likewise do you have a wi-fi router or have your neighbours - if so they are also squirting out more radio energy than a smart meter.

    Smart meters use the mobile network, not wi-fi and don't transmit all the time, just in small bursts.

    If you are really all that concerned then get rid of of your mobile phones, laptops, routers etc and don't travel on public transport or go out into the street. You'll be sitting or walking next to someone who has got a mobile.

    Most shops and other places have wifi and of course there are all the mobile phone base stations. Not forgetting TV & radio transmitters, police, fire and ambulances with mobile communication dveices in them

    You could line your walls and windows with aluminium foil but some would still get through.

    As Hengus says a smart meter should be the least of your worries.
    Last edited by matelodave; 31-12-2017 at 9:46 AM.
    Love makes the world go round - beer make it go round even faster
    • thorganby
    • By thorganby 31st Dec 17, 12:33 PM
    • 41 Posts
    • 39 Thanks
    thorganby
    Where have you got that from?

    I'm guessing that you've got a mobile phone which you hold up to your head and keep in a pocket or handbag which is actually transmitting all the time - not just when you make a phone call.

    Likewise do you have a wi-fi router or have your neighbours - if so they are also squirting out more radio energy than a smart meter.

    Smart meters use the mobile network, not wi-fi and don't transmit all the time, just in small bursts.

    If you are really all that concerned then get rid of of your mobile phones, laptops, routers etc and don't travel on public transport or go out into the street. You'll be sitting or walking next to someone who has got a mobile.

    Most shops and other places have wifi and of course there are all the mobile phone base stations. Not forgetting TV & radio transmitters, police, fire and ambulances with mobile communication dveices in them

    You could line your walls and windows with aluminium foil but some would still get through.

    As Hengus says a smart meter should be the least of your worries.
    Originally posted by matelodave
    Agreed except mobiles are not "transmitting all the time" and battery life would certainly be unacceptable if this was the case!

    When a mobile is first switched on it searches for the nearest mobile base station with the strongest signal in that location. The handset then identifies itself to the mobile network via the control channel and it becomes attached to the network initially via that cell. Each area has a VLR database that stores details of all mobiles in that area. When or if a mobile moves from one cell to the next, the database is updated so that the network continuously maintains a record of where all attached mobiles are on the system, so continuous transmission is not required. When a mobile is called, the network knows which cell it is in and pages the mobile to establish a connection for the duration of the call.
    • Nick_C
    • By Nick_C 31st Dec 17, 12:39 PM
    • 3,403 Posts
    • 4,636 Thanks
    Nick_C
    Agreed except mobiles are not "transmitting all the time" and battery life would certainly be unacceptable if this was the case!

    When a mobile is first switched on it searches for the nearest mobile base station with the strongest signal in that location. The handset then identifies itself to the mobile network via the control channel and it becomes attached to the network initially via that cell. Each area has a VLR database that stores details of all mobiles in that area. When or if a mobile moves from one cell to the next, the database is updated so that the network continuously maintains a record of where all attached mobiles are on the system, so continuous transmission is not required. When a mobile is called, the network knows which cell it is in and pages the mobile to establish a connection for the duration of the call.
    Originally posted by thorganby
    How does the cell know that the mobile has moved if it is not transmitting?
    • Raxiel
    • By Raxiel 31st Dec 17, 12:48 PM
    • 533 Posts
    • 277 Thanks
    Raxiel
    I am new to this whole forum malarkey. Hoping someone can advise.
    British Gas kindly offered to install Landis smart meters for gas and electric a while back. We have since changed suppliers (we're part of the MSE cheap energy club) and have subsequently developed concerns about the possible health impact of the smart meters. The new company doesn't use the smart meter functionality and we still supply readings, so my question to anyone out there is: can the Wi-Fi transmitters be disabled so that were no longer subject to the worrying levels of radio waves emissions?
    Originally posted by Mattandjo
    It's OK, if you believe the radio energy is a problem, there's someone who believes they've found a solution : https://store.planet-tachyon.com/tachyon-g-smart-gas-meter-emf-radiation-protection-kit/

    I doubt anyone who installed one of those kits has developed any health issues as a result of their smart meter.
    • iltisman
    • By iltisman 31st Dec 17, 12:49 PM
    • 2,373 Posts
    • 2,576 Thanks
    iltisman
    How does the cell know that the mobile has moved if it is not transmitting?
    Originally posted by Nick_C
    The phone hears the new cell and transmits to let the system know it is there.
    It's only my cheerfulness that keeps me going
    • Raxiel
    • By Raxiel 31st Dec 17, 12:55 PM
    • 533 Posts
    • 277 Thanks
    Raxiel
    How does the cell know that the mobile has moved if it is not transmitting?
    Originally posted by Nick_C
    It's not that it isn't transmitting, just that it transmits very short bursts, occasionally, rather than a constant connection.

    If a phone moved out of the range of a particular cell, the network wouldn't be able to find it until it made it's next ping (that would be picked up by a different cell). It's unusual, but it can happen.
    • badmemory
    • By badmemory 31st Dec 17, 1:05 PM
    • 1,236 Posts
    • 1,346 Thanks
    badmemory
    Your health is at far more risk from the stress of the smart bit being turned off because you've changed supplier & need a new one fitted & hypothermia from the battery in the gas smart going suddenly flat in midwinter & leaving you without heating until they can be bothered to come & sort it.
    • thorganby
    • By thorganby 31st Dec 17, 1:14 PM
    • 41 Posts
    • 39 Thanks
    thorganby
    How does the cell know that the mobile has moved if it is not transmitting?
    Originally posted by Nick_C
    It's not that it isn't transmitting, just that it transmits very short bursts, occasionally, rather than a constant connection.

    If a phone moved out of the range of a particular cell, the network wouldn't be able to find it until it made it's next ping (that would be picked up by a different cell). It's unusual, but it can happen.
    Originally posted by Raxiel
    When a mobile moves, it's receiver is continuously monitoring signal strength and signal quality from several adjacent cells to ensure that it is attached to the best cell available for that location. The cell handover process is initiated when an adjacent cell provides better signal strength/quality than the current cell. The handset then identifies itself to this better cell by transmitting on the control channel as it did when it was initially switched on. The mobile does not transmit continuously as this is not necessary for the network to know which cell the mobile is located in and maintain this information in it's database. The network always knows where all attached mobiles are located on it's network.
    • matelodave
    • By matelodave 31st Dec 17, 1:17 PM
    • 3,286 Posts
    • 1,996 Thanks
    matelodave
    OK I'll acknowledge that it isn't continuous, but it's pinging the base station every so often whilst it's in your pocket close to bits of you that you'd probably not want irradiated - certainly a lot closer than any smart meter.

    Likewise whn in use the phone id held right up against your head (unless you are one of these who walks down the street shouting at it) which again is a lot closer than most smart meters.

    However, if you believe all the guff about how dangerous smart meters are, your brain has already been fried and so a smart meter wont make much difference to your health and may actually help you get on with life
    Love makes the world go round - beer make it go round even faster
    • Nick_C
    • By Nick_C 31st Dec 17, 2:08 PM
    • 3,403 Posts
    • 4,636 Thanks
    Nick_C
    When a mobile moves, it's receiver is continuously monitoring signal strength and signal quality from several adjacent cells to ensure that it is attached to the best cell available for that location. The cell handover process is initiated when an adjacent cell provides better signal strength/quality than the current cell. The handset then identifies itself to this better cell by transmitting on the control channel as it did when it was initially switched on. The mobile does not transmit continuously as this is not necessary for the network to know which cell the mobile is located in and maintain this information in it's database. The network always knows where all attached mobiles are located on it's network.
    Originally posted by thorganby
    Among all the rubbish posted on here there is often some interesting information. Thanks for taking the time to explain.
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 31st Dec 17, 2:32 PM
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    • 4,990 Thanks
    zeupater
    It's not that it isn't transmitting, just that it transmits very short bursts, occasionally, rather than a constant connection.

    If a phone moved out of the range of a particular cell, the network wouldn't be able to find it until it made it's next ping (that would be picked up by a different cell). It's unusual, but it can happen.
    Originally posted by Raxiel
    Hi

    The issue related to smart-meters is that it (not registering with a cell) can & does happen ... my mobile phone is right next to me & turned on & it currently has no network - there are a couple of areas in the house where you could get a very weak signal on rare occasions, but that's about it.

    So, in our case ...
    .. we're not only in the proportion of the households where smart-meter communication issues would cause problems and render their installation irrelevant on any automation grounds, ..

    .. but also in the percentage of households with access to monitors which provide information which renders the IHD irrelevant, ..

    .. additionally in the percentage of households which should have originally been assessed (according to EU directive) as having little potential benefit (on ultra-low usage emission reduction grounds) and therefore classified as being outside the scope for inclusion within this 'special' emission reduction project, thus rendering inclusion in the project irrelevant, ..

    .. and finally, through choice based on awareness of project flaws, being in the 20% of households supposedly assessed as having benefit which are allowed to be outside the 2020 target whilst still meeting the project target (80% of assessed).

    The issue here is that the smart-meter project as implemented in the UK is flawed - essentially the concept is to meet 2020 emission reduction targets, however through not targetting high users the project is bound to fail and/or have unnecessary & severe cost overrun implications by design ... standard logic would suggest that ranking households by energy usage & targetting smart-meters & other efficiency measures at the highest 20% would deliver 80% of the total savings available for a fraction of the 'special project' cost, leaving the remainder of meters to be replaced within their nominal replacement cycle ... as it is, if the least efficient & highest consumption users are within the allowable 20% within the simplistic installation count KPI measure which the smart-meter project uses, then it could feasibly deliver only 20% of the target whist costing considerably more, handing the industry a 'bow wave' replacement cycle headache which is almost impossible to smooth, therefore we'll be paying for the effects of this 'bright idea' for ever ... well, almost forever - if the industry can possibly get away with it! ...

    HTH
    Z
    Last edited by zeupater; 31-12-2017 at 3:04 PM. Reason: +(not registering with a cell)
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • Bern64
    • By Bern64 5th Jan 18, 1:44 PM
    • 4 Posts
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    Bern64
    Do companies receive commission for getting/coercing/forcing a customer to have a smart meter fitted. I am being bombarded by phone calls morning, noon and night almost on a daily basis. All from the same number. I am with Scottish Power. I have spoken to one person so far (usually I am out) and I don't believe they are from Scottish Power as they sounded very aggressive and pretended that I had made an order so they were just phoning to arrange fitting. There was no order made by me. Also it smacked of a scam so I refused to verify my details when asked. They refused to verify my details to me so that I could ascertain if they are genuine or not. In the end there was a large sigh at the end of the phone and they hung up. Still no idea if it was a scam or not!
    • Nick_C
    • By Nick_C 5th Jan 18, 2:02 PM
    • 3,403 Posts
    • 4,636 Thanks
    Nick_C
    Although advice to consumers is that smart meters are not compulsory, every energy supplier has targets and an action plan to complete the roll out of smart meters to all domestic users and small businesses by 2020.

    I don't know what the penalties for non compliance are.

    Edit: to quote from an OFGEM letter of June '17;
    "Suppliers are required to take all reasonable steps to roll out smart meters to all domestic
    and small business customers by the end of 2020. This will deliver significant benefits to
    consumers, such as ending estimated billing and giving consumers greater control over... "
    Last edited by Nick_C; 05-01-2018 at 2:05 PM.
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 5th Jan 18, 2:19 PM
    • 3,950 Posts
    • 4,990 Thanks
    zeupater
    Do companies receive commission for getting/coercing/forcing a customer to have a smart meter fitted ...
    Originally posted by Bern64
    Hi

    It seems that the energy sector has been given permission to roll-out smart-meters which cost a few pounds, install those meters within the terms of a 'special project' which is justified on environmental (/energy efficiency) grounds, then allowed to recover the 'few pounds' and installation costs over an extended period, resulting in the equipment costing upwards of £500 on a current cost basis, so much more when inflationary pressures are applied.

    Of course, investing 'a few pounds' up front to receive £500+ of additional revenue provides the industry with ample incentive to operate an aggressive sales campaign ... furthermore, the majority of installations are being sub-contracted to 3rd parties (under lucrative 'short-term' agreements), who themselves have a vested interest in encouraging consumers to have the smart-meters installed ...

    Of course, there's no need to worry, the extortionate £500+ for the meters is considered reasonable because they're fitted for free, before charging us all £500+ for the privilege on an amortised basis (added to the DD/bill!) ...

    The more of us that realise there'll be no direct energy efficiency savings or even cost/benefit in our own circumstances, the less everyone will have to pay for this ridiculous project ... when the cut-off point for the project roll-out has been passed, the energy sector will still need to replace meters as necessary, which we pay for anyway within out current bills, it's just that they'll need to use their own funds, not those allowed to be charged under the umbrella of this 'special project' .... I'm looking forward to that day, but suspect that as the target has little chance of being achieved within the current plan, the sector with convince BEIS to roll-over and extend it's scope!

    HTH
    Z
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 5th Jan 18, 2:40 PM
    • 3,950 Posts
    • 4,990 Thanks
    zeupater
    Although advice to consumers is that smart meters are not compulsory, every energy supplier has targets and an action plan to complete the roll out of smart meters to all domestic users and small businesses by 2020.

    I don't know what the penalties for non compliance are.

    Edit: to quote from an OFGEM letter of June '17; "Suppliers are required to take all reasonable steps to roll out smart meters to all domestic and small business customers by the end of 2020. This will deliver significant benefits to consumers, such as ending estimated billing and giving consumers greater control over... "
    Originally posted by Nick_C
    Hi

    The majority of what I've seen regarding this tends to result in 'reasonable steps' being fulfilled by making a direct offer to the consumer, whether they accept it or not ... other than that, as the industry can't legally 'force' anyone to have a smart-meter the wording is totally meaningless!

    Additionally, "will deliver significant benefits to consumers" cannot be true, because it not only can't apply in a significant form to 'all customers' but in many cases the technology provides no direct consumer benefit whatsoever ... the main beneficiary being whoever receives the £12-£15billion of additional revenue that this project generates ....

    Brief (/unbiased) project reasoning & history covered here on this blog/site ... <Smart Metering - (1). Introduction: What's it all about ?>

    HTH
    Z
    Last edited by zeupater; 05-01-2018 at 2:55 PM. Reason: grammar
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
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