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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania
    (Monroe County)
    Rep Power

    Default MetEd meter guessing

    Good article, missing substance as usual but whatever

    Log Cabin Restaurant owner Arthur Garris was surprised his October electric bill was so low.
    Usually in the hundreds of dollars, the Bushkill Falls Road eatery received a bill for $78.
    "We knew it had to be more than that," Garris said.
    His wife called Met-Ed, their electric company, to see how much it was.
    Officials sent her outside to read the meter and then said Garris should pay an extra $500.
    The electric company told Garris it was estimating the readings.
    "It seems that everyone is getting an estimated reading," Garris said.

    Old-fashioned meter reading
    It may come as a surprise to some, but much of our area is still in the Stone Age when it comes to electrical metering.
    In a recent report, even the Public Utility Commission seemed surprised.
    "As it turns out, the types of and capabilities of metering systems currently used by EDCs (electric distribution companies) vary significantly. Some EDCs have advanced (automated) metering systems, while others still utilize traditional basic meters that require field visits and manual readings to obtain metering information.
    "In fact, some EDCs only read customer meters on a bi-monthly basis and issue estimated bills during the non-read months."
    Some providers, like Met-Ed, must physically read the meter on your home. It doesn't always happen that way, though.
    "There are times when we estimate your electricity usage during a billing period based on your previous electric bills. Any difference between your estimated usage and actual usage is automatically adjusted the next time your meter is read," said Met-Ed spokesman Scott Surgeoner.

    Four-legged obstacles
    But don't try holding your utility company responsible. They'll likely blame the weather. Or your dog.

    "Your bill may be estimated if a dog on or near your property was blocking the meter reader's path to your electric meter. To help ensure their safety, meter readers will not attempt to read an electric meter if there is a dog in the vicinity of the meter," Surgeoner said.
    Other factors can prevent your meter from being read.
    "At times, severe weather conditions or other unforeseen problems might keep them from reading all the meters on their routes," Surgeoner said.
    Met-Ed offers a second option you can avoid estimated bills by submitting your meter reading online through its website.

    PPL is modernized
    PPL's meter reading is, on the other hand, so 2011. All of its meters were automated in 2004, and are read electronically each month for billing purposes.
    Estimated bills are rare, according to spokesman Michael Wood.
    PPL customers can actually get daily meter readings by registering their account online at
    Yet, problems do pop up from time to time.
    "In less than 1 percent of cases, estimated bills are produced based on historical average usage for the customer and weather for the billing period, then an adjustment for actual usage is made the following month," Wood said. "These occur when there is a communication error reading the automated meter."
    Still, about 99.8 percent of all PPL bills are based on actual use, according to spokesman Joe Nixon. The rest are based on historic use and weather conditions, and are adjusted subsequently.

    Whoops, Part Two
    Back in Bushkill, Garris received a bill the following month for $1,000.
    "We called them and they revised the bill for less."
    This is becoming a MUCH bigger problem because the cost is going up almost every other month... so when they "estimate" you for 2 - 3 months and the finally do a real reading you will pay the higher rate for the last 2 - 3 months of usage. We just caught a 200+ bill because they estimated for 2 months in a row, and then they finally read after my cost had increased

    btw - they use the "dog" excuse for us all the time... I assume its because the neighbors dogs are out... they are fenced in, and they are little beagles... but they are dogs
    The first vehicles normally on the scene of a crime are ambulances and police cruisers. If you are armed you have a chance to decide who gets transported in which vehicle, if you are not armed then that decision is made for you.

    Be prepared, because someone else already is and no one knows their intent except them.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania
    (Monroe County)
    Rep Power

    Default Re: MetEd meter guessing

    my bill flat out says i am on a bi-monthly reading. and my meter is dual-tariff, they don't accept readings from me for it.
    but at least if you have a typical meter you can submit entries online.
    " The type of meter you have on this account does not allow you to submit a meter reading online."

    "We schedule to read your meter every other month, as part of our billing process. Your next billing statement is scheduled to be based on an ACTUAL meter reading."

    Edit: UPDATE! i called meted, found out that my whole route was skipped this month, no reason provided by the reader.
    anyway, i was able to submit a reading by phone. it's real simple too, even with a digital dual-tariff meter.
    Last edited by fallenleader; December 14th, 2011 at 07:05 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Palmyra, Pennsylvania
    (Lebanon County)
    Rep Power

    Default Re: MetEd meter guessing

    Estimated meter reading make me furious. I can see on the graph on my bill that without fail the estimated bill is always higher than the surrounding actual readings (sometimes by a little, and sometimes by a lot). They say that it "evens out", but I have to wonder. I have no idea how to read a meter, and i think it's ridiculous for met-ed to force me to either read it myself or pay for electricity that i'm not using. The electricity providers in other areas have already switched to meters that automatically report back so that they don't need to come out to read them. PPL switched to the auto-reporting meters back in 2004. Come on met ed, you keep raising our prices, how bout you use that money to join the 21st century.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Dingmans Ferry, Pennsylvania
    (Pike County)
    Rep Power

    Default Re: MetEd meter guessing

    If they read the meter every other month why not send a bill every other month? I guess they want your money every month.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania
    (Monroe County)
    Rep Power

    Default Re: MetEd meter guessing

    meter reading is very easy and if you do it, hopefully, it keeps a stranger off your property, i'd love auto reporting meters.
    on my meter, i believe it's all 0000000000 followed by date, time, A on-peak, B off-peak, then 000000000 again.

    it "evens out" by them crediting the money back to your account the next month.
    they also offer an option to pay an even amount monthly, i believe based off history.

    my meter reader currently has NO access to my meter. S--t happens, i'll be getting estimates until the staircase is finished.

    what i want to know, why am i renting my meter? i pay monthly for a "dual-tariff" meter we've had for over a decade.
    "Live free or die. Death is not the worst of evils. John Stark

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