Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Steve gets Smart!

Today, at last, I got smart. More accurately, our house did - courtesy of a very nice man from British Gas called Tim.

I must admit, I’ve known about the existence of ‘smart meters’ for some time now, but like many other things in (my) life, I’ve never got around to looking at it in more detail. However, clearly, based on how long it took to get an appointment (two months!) to be switched over, there’s now a lot of other households getting smart too!

So, what does it all mean, and why would anyone want to go ‘smart’?

Well, the short answer is why NOT? First up, it was all free and the installation only took around two hours. In return, we now

  • have a small gizmo that allows us to see exactly how much gas and electricity we’re using
  • say goodbye to estimated meter readings as the gizmo sends readings regularly
  • can can go online and look at various statistics about our data use (as well as seeing basic stats on the device itself)
  • get the option of switching tariffs so that energy used on a Saturday is completely free (yes, you read that right – FREE!)

Because of this extra monitoring, we can also probably save a bit over the course of the year simply because the information is more obvious. Anyone who has been at ours will know that we like things ‘super-toasty’ warm, and have a lot of lights!!! So at least now, we’ll be able to see how much the toast and lighthouse is costing! Best of all though, we’ve got another bit of tech in the house for me to get my head round!
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The installation was pretty-much pain-free. Tim started by turning off the electricity and replacing the meter outside, then he repeated the exercise for the gas. Finally, a quick tutorial on how the gizmo worked and some advice about how to save energy costs.

Cheers Tim - Job done!
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