How to Disable Smart Power Meter?

Any way to disable a smart power meter? My power company trespassed on our property, despite us telling them no and to leave. Can I disable their access to the meter?

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Answers ( 72 )

  1. Erick Abshire
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    No, you need the power so they are allowed to have access… You can request at a pole be put in and the meter put on the pole instead of on the house… I do not know if they charge for this or not.

    • Quincy
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      They definitely would.

      • Erick Abshire
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        This is the way my entire trailer park is wired. In most cases they cannot mount a meter on a trailer, so short power poles were installed about 50 feet from each trailer, and the meters are mounted on the poles… These are telephone poles but are not full height… 1/4 height it looks like. Meter for two trailers is on each one. Short line to the house can handle 200 amps which is adequate for a normal trailer. My line is 125 Amps but never use more than about 1/2 that occasionally.

        People complained about radiation, but it was really a zoning thing. it is illegal to mount meter on a single wide trailer in Virginia…

        The radiation is not a big deal, I have a wireless router in the living room, a VDOT (Virginia Department of transportation is next door)… we have wireless signals on about 4 different bands. I have a two band router that is hi power… mounted in the living room…

        They charge for the power meters and the installation. Was a little over $5000 for my house. Of course, it probably varies by area, but I can’t imagine they would sink a pole and move the meter for free if it’s just personal preference and not local law.

        That is illegal, they are not allowed to charge for installing or moving a meter in most areas. In Virginia that is illegal… and they are required to move it on request if you can prove that it is radiating or configured incorrectly

        I would consult with the tax/zoning office and ask them to look up the rules and print them out for you.. my local office has done that for me. They are allowed to charge a small amt for copying charges

        • Jake Reinger
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          Yeah, definitely varies by area and local law if it’s illegal there.

          • Garett Fahey
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            City codes and municipal laws are usually online now.

            • Enrico Ratke
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              City codes and municipal laws are usually online now.

              • Roscoe Emard
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                Hereby me any issue with the meter is the homeowner’s responsibility. Out neighbors was damaged in a storm and they had to pay an electrician to come in and replace it, the city had to inspect it then the power company signed off and sealed it.

                • Erick Abshire
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                  my landlord is also my electrician/plumber and fix it guy…. so all that is free to me… but that makes sense.

  2. Al Osinski
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    You in the US? Rule of thumb is usually they own the meter, and everything towards the street. You own the wiring between the meter and the house.

  3. Xander Cole
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    I don’t understand why people get up in arms about these smart power meters.

    • Merle Fritsch
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      Mind control, obviously. Or cancer from the RF radiation.

      • Bart Walker
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        Dude, no. If you’re going to ask us how to do something that’s most likely illegal, it’s your job to tell us why it should be done in the first place.

        • Kristopher Kirlin
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          Specifically, where I live, traditional mechanical meters were hastily replaced to meet a legislative requirement to accommodate a Time of Use strategy. Unfortunately, this was done so quickly that record-keeping was very poor and meters associated to the wrong accounts. Additionally, the terrain where I live is basically shit for the radios in these things. My meter is the only one on my road that communicates reliably – everybody else gets “estimates” that are sometimes wildly off.

          However, generally speaking, many of the smart meters on the market are inaccurate:

          https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/03/06/smart-energy-meters-giving-readings-seven-times-high-study-finds/

          • Ramon Mante
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            There are potential privacy implications too, and not just in a “big brother is watching” kind of way. If the meters can be read remotely, that means that criminals can use them as a tool to help select houses to burgle.

            • Cole Baumbach
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              Possible privacy issues are the only real troubles from these things. Not RF, or Mind Control, or whatever-the-nuts half of these tinfoil hat nit-wits are posting about here.

              • Merle Fritsch
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                I could see RF being a potential issue: Harmful interference to other devices is possible. With my last flip phone, it interfered with my sound system, and I could always tell when a call was coming in, and when it was searching for signal. There is potential for smart meters to cause similar types of interference. For the most part, this strikes me as something likely to only be a minor nuisance.

                • Cole Baumbach
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                  Interference is a possible issue.. I was thinking more about the “RF causes Autism!” type of crap.

  4. Melody Towne
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    Here you can opt out for a monthly fee to cover them having to send meter reader.

    • Dr. Sherman
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      Just started in my area. $25/month for manual readings. If people are that worried, maybe it’s worth the $25?!

  5. Sterling Watsica
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    You’re free to live off the grid.

    • Aurelio Moore
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      Depends where you are.

      If you have a mortgage on your home where I live? And you do not have power service from the grid that renders your home as uninhabitable. Even if you have your own power source. Intern your insurance company drops you because the house is uninhabitable. And then the mortgage company forecloses on your house because with no insurance they terminate your mortgage. Happened to the guy around the corner from me. Which I can’t entirely say I’m worked up about because he had a noisy ass piece of shit generator that he ran 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

      • Alberto
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        Not allowed to be disconnected from utils in Florida, period, don’t have to use any of them, but have to remain connected… eminent domain and shit still apply of course.

        • Russel Nader
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          Run a single wall clock from the power grid. there is no minimum you must run. just don’t disconnect the service. might cost like 3$ a month, worth it to keep naysayers away.

          • Lyric Greenfelder
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            Florida needs to allow solar panels. They say we wanna be eco-friendly but yet they are controlling the power and forcing people on it.

            • Alberto
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              Don’t get me wrong Florida does allow solar panels you just can’t have solar panels and unhooked from utilities… you have to say hooked to your utilities and because of that if you have solar in Florida half the time you have to be using a grid tie inverter for safety of the electrical system are whoever maybe servicing your house.

              It doesn’t really make a lot of sense but I do know that Florida recently had some electricity companies that were trying to get a bill passed that would make it regulated by the utility companies as opposed to unregulated or regulated by the state which would basically give complete control of the solar industry to the utilities

              thank God it didn’t pass.

  6. Francisco
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    Depends on your level of comfort using a command line in a Linux shell and whether you have access to an SDR that can transmit and receive.
    …If so, look up a little program called Termineter
    …And that’s all I’ll say on the subject

    • Koby
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      Great, now you gave me a new project Francisco… like I didn’t have enough already

      • Francisco
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        LOL. Sorry about that mate. I know how ya feel. Got two dozen partial “Oooo, I wanna go nuts with that” projects on my bench RIGHT NOW awaiting completion.
        But there are some legitimate applications interacting with your smart meter. I can pull real-time consumption usage from mine. Helps me dial down which appliances are using what. Once I have those signatures dialed in, I can very precisely track my total usage per appliance over time.

        • Koby
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          Damn, that’s interesting!

  7. Paxton
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    Find out what the frequency of the uplink and downlink on the meter.. you’ll know what to do from there 😉

    • Makenna Turcotte
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      And get an NOUO from FCC.

      • Paxton
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        if it’s in the ISM band…

        • Makenna Turcotte
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          All of them I know of are licensed. If it was ism would probably be spread spectrum.

          • Paxton
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            The ones used in Canada are 902-928 ISM with 5.7 haulback.

  8. Ashton Smitham
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    Generally, the power company doesn’t need your permission to access the meter even if it’s on your property.

    • Berta Legros
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      Accessing to meter read is different to using the private land to install an unwanted device I would hope in a fair society.

      • Ashton Smitham
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        They can access and replace their equipment. So you’d have to have given them some valid reason to not receive the new equipment, likely in writing, in advance. But more than likely it’s a “ask to have it removed after the fact” kind of thing. Especially since, outside of the tin foil hat crowd, there are no issues with the meters.

        • Tyler Hoeger
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          Why reduce an adult debate with the ‘tin hat’ comment. People pay big money to have TVs that listens to them and phones that track their every move. Meters are one more evasion into your privacy. You can search if you’re genuinely new to the subject.

          • Prof. Dallin
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            I’ve seen the reports and the claims made against the meters. The power company has a right to upgrade/replace/repair their equipment. My city (in Michigan) did a changeover a few years ago. They sent a mailer to the house a little over a month before they planned to come out. They sent a second mailer a couple weeks before. The week of, they personally put a flyer on my door. Each one had instructions on how to “opt out” and what fees would be involved for the constant upkeep of the obsolete equipment (including reading fees).

        • Merle Fritsch
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          there have a few articles about inaccurate readings from “smart” meters — in some cases the meters significantly over-indicate power usage.

          Also, there are privacy concerns: Being able to read the meter constantly can help build a picture of people’s schedules, and what kind of electronics a household owns.

          On the surface, that generally sounds like the kind of thing that would worry the aluminum film milliners, but it’s really the sort of thing that should worry all of us: It would be relatively easy to build a compact system to monitor local meters over time. It seems like it offers an extremely covert way to scope out which homes to burglarize, and when to hit them.

  9. Makenna Turcotte
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    RF from smart meters is less than u get from your cell phone. A power company has easements or right of way on your property if you have electric. It’s in your deed or property records. They are not trespassing, it’s the price you pay to have electric. If you won’t let them on your property they will come with a sheriff and do it anyway or shut your power off. Sorry dude your SOL.

  10. Helmer Towne
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    So you care about trespassing to install smart meter but didn’t care about trespassing once a month for the reader to read it?

    • Horace Schinner
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      Actually, it’s the fact that we asked him to leave and he came back 30 minutes later while we were gone. That’s the reason why I am pissed off.

      • Helmer Towne
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        Then again, he did leave as per your request.

        You could always try telling them you started getting headaches after they installed it. Try to find a doctor that will say you have RF sensitivity. Might work. I would go that route before lots of others. Maybe pay a fee like some others have. Pick your battles. You fight this one too hard you may end up losing badly.

        I don’t mind utilities. I work for a gas company so I see both sides landowner and company. I use it to my advantage. Last time the power company trimmed trees they were just going to trim one tree well I talked them into cutting 3 down. They cut it into wood burner sized pieces and chipped the limbs. Saved me lots of work.

  11. Kiel Wunsch
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    If you’re that opposed to the power company coming onto your property, maybe you should try to go without them for a while? it’s a serious suggestion, the fewer people rely on them the better. not many can actually make that happen though. I would think that “trespassing” is a part of the service agreement in some way.

  12. Remington Hilpert
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    You could Faraday cage it but in their terms of service it is their property and has the right to trespass to access the meter to service, replace or read the meter. you usually have signed for it in the contract for power

  13. Mr. Johnny
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    Revoke consent via certified letter to the utility and set a deadline for removal of existing smart meter.

    • Demand that the meter be removed. Do not take no for an answer. It is your home and your authority- not theirs. Assume everything the utility says is a lie.

    • Do not be fooled by a digital “radio off” meter or an analog meter with transmitting equipment in it. Ask them to confirm in writing that the meter is a “non-electronic electromechanical analog meter.”

    • If a utility continues to insist on their illegal trespass, people have had their smart meters removed by a qualified professional and replaced with purely electromechanical analog meters. (Note that this may result in a disconnect depending on the sanity of your utility). You can purchase a reliable analog meter online.

    Best answer
    • Cole Baumbach
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      Yea, remove the meter that they can read remotely, in favor of one they have to walk up to, in order to read it. Makes perfect sense. SMDH.

      • Mr. Johnny
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        You are missing the point. The issue isn’t the reading of the meter. It’s the RF from the wireless meters. This is an issue all over the US and people are fighting it.
        The figures for RF exposure given by utilities are time-averaged numbers which hide the peak power of the “smart” meter, and disguise the fairly continuous nature of the pulses. “Smart” meters are unlike cell phones or WiFi in their bizarre pattern of sharp spikes of RF. The highest I’ve seen mine is 3 watts, I don’t know if it goes higher or not…

        • Wallace Cormier
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          3 Watts?

          Your cell phone can transmit up to 2 watts. And you put it right next to your head.
          The hundreds of cell towers in your area are putting out even more.
          Your microwave puts out even more RF.
          Relax.

          And you said computer puts out that much RF? What do you mean?
          Last I heard wifi routers put out 1/4watt.

  14. Mr. Johnny
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    Aluminum foil, especially the heavy-duty type, in two layers, overlapping, can block a good deal of RF (shiny side toward the source of the RF). Aluminum mesh screening from a hardware store can effectively shield RF as well. Here is a video demonstrating this:

    • Mr. Johnny
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      Other places, utilities simply rip off the foil. If you were to build something substantial and affixed to your house, that would raise very interesting issues of who owns the very air around your home is raised, and what rights you have to protect yourself from harm or surveillance.

      • Albin Waters
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        You have to provide an easement for utilities or risk being responsible to the street and the exterior wiring can be extremely expensive.

  15. Deion
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    Don’t understand… you have a smart power meter .. it should broadcast wirelessly.. if you faraday it etc.. then they will come on your property to read the meter.. so make up your mind?

  16. Trevor Rohan
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    • Helmer Towne
      0

      Put on your tinfoil hats.

      • Helmer Towne
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        I’m not going to watch a 40 minute YouTube video (I don’t have the time, and I’m not paying Google/YouTube for the privilege of listening to YouTube in the background), but opposition to smart meters isn’t *all* from the aluminum film milliner crowd.

        Too big and legitimate concerns with them:

        * Do they accurately gauge power usage? There have been persistent issues with accuracy with many models of smart meters. Here’s a 2010 NYT article on this issue: https://mobile.nytimes.com/2010/11/13/business/13meter.html

        * There are legitimate privacy issues with smart meters: they can let people know when you’re home and when you aren’t, and they can potentially tell people what types of electronic devices you use and when. The common concern is that the government will end up with this data, or possibly that the power company will sell it to various analytics and advertising companies. In reality, the most dangerous threat here is ordinary criminals: With smart meters, criminals can run through an area, drop a long-term sniffer off, and then pick it up later and examine the data. That data can then be used to help determine which homes to burgle, and when.

        • Helmer Towne
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          Agreed. Those are legitimate concerns.

  17. Gerson Jakubowski
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    I’ve heard people talk about getting sick from the trans-reluctance out of the EMP meter. That’s what the power companies call it internally, an EMP meter. They broadcast harmful amounts of rf radiation that can cause your heart to stop and cook from the inside out! Have you ever seen an RF burn? I once saw a pigeon land on a wireless meter and it literally imploded.

  18. Arden Turcotte
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    The whole smart power meter should mean that no one has to come onto your property to read the meter.

    Anyways, there is likely an ordinance allowing utilities onto your property for the purpose of performing tasks like meter reading.

    Without it, how is the utility going to charge you?

    • Mr. Johnny
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      You are still allowed to tell them to get off your property and force them to go through the court to get access if you wanted.

  19. Casimir Waelchi
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    If you have power to your house from the “power company” you signed a contract saying that they can install and read your meter every so often. Unless you are off the grid and need no power from them, there is nothing you can do. You can complain maybe.

    • Bart Nikolaus
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      Even with solar in some counties if someone tells that your system has poor maintenance the power company can get in an take all the off-grid out of your place.

  20. Ted Greenfelder
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    Can someone explain to me why you wouldn’t want a smart meter? I mean, besides being “sensitive to RF” or whatever (which if you’re in this group I’m assuming you ARE NOT)…. I’m genuinely curious. I’ve used our local power provider’s site to help dial in when my big usage is happening and curb my power usage. Is it a conspiracy theory? They know how much power you’re using and therefor know too much? I’m honestly curious.

    • Deion
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      Tiered billing based on usage over the day (cheaper off peak rates, more expensive peak rates). RF hash in the HF spectrum (only an issue to ham radio operators, and only early smart meters had this problem).

      • King Stroman
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        Like what above Deion said… Time of day billing. That is why those in California got hosed when they were introduced. They introduced time of day billing and people hadn’t learned to turn the ac off while they are at work and the house is vacant. That and they refused to turn the thermostat up a few degrees as everyone thought they needed to have a house 67degrees in the summertime.

        • Ted Greenfelder
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          I’ve got an HF I scan around with from time to time and noticed no RF splatter or crossbanding of any kind.

          So the only reason left is time of day billing, which if you ask me actually makes sense.

          • King Stroman
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            Agree. It was a problem in the beginning. But the same was said about powerline broadband. Many don’t realize it. Not all meters have antennas or radios. Most do billing over the wires themselves even if they don’t offer broadband.

            • Ted Greenfelder
              0

              Yeah, I did a little research when our local co was deploying them just to make sure it wasn’t going to mess with the various.. projects… I do around the house and found that it’s more of a PLN mesh style network. It’s kinda cool actually. 😛

  21. Lane Waelchi
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    You will probably find in the contract you didn’t read that allows the power company access to your property for the purposes of maintaining their equipment, which includes the power meter, which they own. Good luck with the thinly veiled threats, Best Buy repair dude.

  22. Willis Kozey
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    Meter tampering and diversion of service is illegal. Theft of electricity or water can result in a fine and/or service disconnection. The 25th Legislature amended the previous meter tampering law to increase the fines imposed against persons convicted of the misdemeanor offense of tampering.

  23. Monserrate Streich
    0

    Suggestion 1: Get a lawyer.

    Suggestion 2: Install one of those eolic turbines that generate electricity, then connect to the meter. then if you generate more energy that you receive then they have to pay you.

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