Turning Off Power At The Meter Can Be Done In The Following Steps:
1. Wear gloves and rubber boots
2. Shut off the main power bank at the circuit breaker
3. Remove the locking tab at the bottom of the outer panel.
4. Lift your electric meters front panel
5. Hand twists the glass part of the meter counterclockwise to remove it.
6. Flip the main switch to the off position.
Turning off power at the house meter should only be done in an emergency since it can be dangerous. In some localities, it may be unlawful to tamper with the meter without contacting the power company. The utility company owns the meter, all wires, and equipment connecting to the transformer and those attached to the electrical grid.
A certified professional electrician should thus handle services involving a meter to be safe. Instead of tampering with the meter, you can choose to switch off the main circuit breaker as it will still cut electricity in the house. Proper safety measures like wearing gloves and rubber gumboots are recommended to avoid electric shock.
How To Turn Off The Main Circuit Breaker
The main circuit breaker is found near the meter and can be switched off by turning the toggle switch to the off position. Since the main circuit breaker is connected to all of the branch circuits, switching it off completely cuts the power supply in the house. To cut power in specific rooms, switching off specific circuit breakers is effective.
You can easily identify circuit breakers as they have their wires well insulated to reduce the risk of electric shock. Nonetheless, handling electric circuit breakers does not require professionals like the meter. They are well modified for easy use around the household. The element should be fixed out of reach of children and pets to avoid dangers like electric shocks and electric fires if tampered with.
Is It Okay To Turn Off Electricity At The Main Breaker?
Yes, it is completely safe to turn off electricity at the main circuit breaker without harming any other electrical components. However, note that abruptly shutting off the main breaker will kill the house’s power supply in all electrical components. Components like computers and the HVAC may require resetting or rebooting once you turn the unit on for them to operate.
Turning off electricity at the breaker should only be done for emergencies since they cannot be used as switches. They may be more effective and safer than switches but cannot be used as substitutes as the two are not interchangeable. If you use it as a switch, it may be harmful on appliances and devices after prolonged and repeated use.
What Happens If You By-Pass Your Electric Meter?
By-passing of meddling with an electric meter involves moving, connecting and disconnecting live electrical wires. Domestic properties may have low voltage, but it may give an electric shock to your family and the pe when tampered with. In extreme cases, by-passing may cause electric fires that could destroy a lot of property.
It is thus illegal in most places to by-pass the meter since it is the property of your electricity provider. This, therefore, means those authorized are the only ones to approve any activity on the meter. Thus, your electricity provider has a legal right to sue you for by-passing, and it is good to avoid it by all means.
How Can I Check My Electric Meter Is Accurate?
A quick accuracy test on the electric meter is done using electric appliances in your house. Turn off all your appliances and read the meter while noting down the readings. Choose a house appliance that uses a lot of power to function, for instance, the electric kettle. Please read the label on the electric kettle that shows how many watts it requires and compare the wattage to the electric meter reading.
The electric meter reading should not be more than that of the appliance by over 5%. The final readings should not have a very big difference as the rest of the appliances require less power than the electric kettle. This means that the meter is taking accurate readings to avoid underpaying or overpaying for power. In case you discover that the meter is faulty, report to your electricity provider to have it checked for correction or replacement.
Note that power theft is a serious offense that you may be accused of if the meter was faulty and no reports were made.
How Do I Read The Meter Of My House?
From the meter, read and record the displayed numbers from right to left. Observe the pointer’s position, and if directly on a number, look at the right dial. If the number right of the pointer has passed zero, use the next higher number. If it has not passed zero, use the next lower number to get your reading.
Reading your meter ensures you agree with the readings and bills from your electricity provider. If your readings and those of the bill presented differ, it is allowed for you to put up a claim and have it followed up until you agree.
How Can I Monitor My Electricity Usage At Home?
To get specific usage rates, get an electricity usage monitor that tells you exactly how many kilowatt-hours a device or appliance consumes. An electricity usage monitor is as simple as a plug load which is plugged at a power outlet. The device or appliance is then plugged into the monitor to get readings of how much power is consumed.
The information collected by the electricity usage monitor is important for budgeting since you are aware of how much power to pay for. The data is also good as it shows you which appliance or device needs to be used less if possible to save a few coins. This is also effective in monitoring faulty appliances that may consume excess power compared to the recommended.
How Do You Know If Your Meter Is Bad?
Apart from wrong readings of power usage, the following are other signs that your house meter is not in a good state:
1. A display panel that does not remain in the reset mode
2. There is a burning smell coming from the meter box
3. Hot to touch meter box
4. Physical damage on the meter box
The signs mentioned above are quite critical, and, if observed, proper measures should be taken. You should notify the office of your electricity provider to avoid adverse effects like fires. Do not try to fix any of the issues without a certified electrician, which could land you in more trouble. Also, ensure children and pets stay far from the meter box until it is fixed.
Note that a basic meter box lasts for between 30 and 40 years, and if it is too old, you should have it replaced. If the meter gets faulty, it might start tripping, which could have adverse effects on your appliances. If the meter box is old, your electricity provider is obliged to notify you months earlier before they replace it.
How Does A Digital Electric Meter Work?
The traditional electric meter could be influenced by strategically placing magnets, causing theft of power. Electricity providers had to develop a solution to this menace, and digital electric meters were created. The digital electric meters have electronic displays that make them easier to read and understand. Unlike the old meters that required monitoring values to be multiplied by the cost, the digital electric meter shows direct cost readings.
They use a radio frequency signal emitted by the meter to transmit the reading to the utility department. The readings are direct and timely. Every house owner gets to have a carry home display such that they do not need to check the meter for readings. The digital electric meter is quite effective for the electricity provider as well as the house owner.
The house meter has approximately six steps that are taken to turn it off. However, it is illegal for an individual not certified as an electrician or doesn’t work with the involved electricity provider to tamper with the meter. The meter is quite sensitive, and if not handled appropriately, it may cause electric shocks and house fires.
It is safer to switch on or off the main circuit breaker if there is a need to cut off power to the house. Each room has its circuit breaker that can be used if only a specific room needs no power access. Tampering with the circuit breaker is not illegal and is not as dangerous as handling the meter.
Digital electric meters have been improvised, and they are more effective compared to the traditional ones. Transparency is a big advantage, just as the inability to steal power.