An initiative of Lakeland Electric

PlugIntoSMART.com

Questions about..

Smart Meters – What are they? View answer

Smart Meters are electric meters that can transmit data directly to and from Lakeland Electrics’ offices. This “two-way” communications capability will allow you to better manager your power usage, which could help to lower your monthly electric bills. After your meter is installed, we will conduct a few months of in-person comparison reads and then a meter reader will no longer need to come to your home or business to collect your meter data. It will automatically be sent to Lakeland Electric. The new Smart Meters will not interfere with any of your home or business electronics and will be installed by professionally trained meter technicians.

What are the benefits of the Smart Metering Projects? View answer

The benefits of the Smart Metering Program will continue to grow over time. Enhanced customer service and greater convenience are just the start. In the future, you can expect to plug into a host of other benefits. You’ll have access to better and more current information about energy use via a customer website. Our field service will improve, with fewer trucks and personnel in your neighborhood (which also aligns with the City’s green initiatives). We’ll know when your power goes out, and when it is restored – automatically – and we’ll be able to detect and prevent theft of power. “Smart home automation” will also be possible – devices or systems that give you remote or automatic control of things around your home. Through it all, you’ll discover smarter power in your hands, which can save you money and help us become a more efficient source of power for Lakeland.

Who will get a Smart Meter? View answer

All residences and businesses in the Lakeland Electric service area will eventually be upgraded to a Smart Meter.

I have a home office, my baby sleeps during the day, etc. – how will I know when you are coming? View answer

You will receive a notification letter two to three weeks before we begin installation in your area. You are not required to be home during the installation, however, a technician will knock on your door before beginning work to ensure it is okay to proceed. The technician will have a clearly identifiable uniform, vehicle and City approved I.D. badge.

Will there be any interruption to any of my services? View answer

When your electric meter is upgraded, there may be a brief interruption of service, usually less than two minutes. Digital clocks may need to be reset, cordless phones may need to be unplugged and plugged back in, etc.

Do I have to wait around all day for an installer? View answer

No, you do not need to be home for the work to be accomplished. The installer only needs access to the meters.

Can you tell me the exact day and time the technician will install my Smart Meter? View answer

We cannot give you a specific day and time, but you can determine a projected month of installation by typing in your address in the “My Rollout” section in the sidebar of this site.

You’ve installed my new Smart Meter. What now? View answer

The installation of the Smart Grid will not happen overnight. In fact, the process will move forward in phases. We expect it to take roughly 22 months. During that time, we’ll be upgrading everyone’s meter with a new Smart Meter throughout the Lakeland service area. Each Smart Meter will also have to pass thorough testing before it can be turned on.

Here are some projected dates to remember as the installation process unfolds:

February 28, 2011 Installation of first Smart Meter
Fall 2011 Launch of customer usage website
Fall 2011 Availability of Time-of-Use rates
December 30, 2012 Installation of last Smart Meter

Stay tuned to plugintosmart.com for more information as it becomes available.

How secure is the information transmitted from my Smart Meter? View answer

Protecting your information is a top priority for Lakeland Electric. We apply the same privacy protection standards to all data collected from our customers, including and especially the transmission and usage of data collected by your Smart Meter.

We are using state-of-the-art equipment and technology from Sensus, a world-class provider of high-value metering, Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) and Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) system solutions for water, gas, electric and heat utilities. Sensus is the first Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) company to achieve overall cyber security certification after an eight-month collaborative effort with industrial testing and certification firm, Wurldtech Security Technologies. Sensus has achieved the Wurldtech Achilles Practices Certification (APC), a security best practices benchmark, in addition to the Achilles Communication Certification previously awarded for the Sensus FlexNet™ AMI communications system. The Wurldtech Achilles Certifications are based on standards set by the International Instrumentation Users Association (WIB). www.sensus.com

Do Smart Meters emit Radio Frequency?View answer

Smart meters are electronic devices equipped with low-powered radios that communicate with the electric utility company. The smart meter’s low-level radio frequency (RF) signals are assigned by the FCC and are similar to those used my many other everyday appliances such as cellular and cordless phones, garage door openers, baby monitors, televisions, wireless computer networks and home security systems. The smart meters used by Lakeland Electric comply fully with established RF safety standards established by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). For more information click here.

I would like to read my smart meter myself. How can I do that? View answer

Over the years, many of our customers have made a habit of reading their own electric meters. Although the read-out looks different than the older electro-mechanical meters, reading your new Smart Meter is not difficult if you choose to do so.

The window of the Smart Meter has an LCD display of up to 6 characters. It will flash 2 or 3 different readings:

  • The first reading is 888.8.8.8. This is a test to show that all segments of the LCD is working.
  • The second reading is the kilowatt hour display (kWh). This 5 digit number is your meter reading.
  • The third reading will show the switch as OPEN or CLOSED. This reading will only appear only if you have a Smart Meter with a remote controlled internal switch.

If you are a large commercial customer, please contact your Lakeland Electric account representative for information on reading the Poly Phase Commercial Smart Meter.