So you think that the installation of smart meters has helped you with your billing only? Then think again. The smart meters have not just been installed for the benefit of billing. There is more to them than meets the eye. But first let us understand what was the utility bills scenario altogether before the installation of smart meters.
Consider this situation where you have the traditional digital or analog meter installed at the property. The analog non-smart meters are almost non existent, but wherever they are, they pose a difficulty in reading accurately sometimes. If one would want to know how much of gas or electricity has been consumed at one particular time, then it is difficult to find the answer accurately except if you have smart meters. There might be times when the dial will be halfway up the next digit. Such concerns can be dealt with and the digital meters (and smart meters) have been the answer to the issue. The smart meters eliminate all reading issues.
However, when it comes to the billing and the assessment of consumption, these meters do not help a lot. A customers average monthly or quarterly billing can be assessed by knowing the consumption for that billing cycle. The trend of consumption cannot be established till before the meter reading has been monitored for a long time, usually a year. The smart meters are a suitable alternative. This is because all the seasons should be monitored for consumption. The consumption automatically drops during summers and shoots up during the colder months of the year. Therefore the timeline of at least a year is required for the correct assessment which smart meters can help with.
In an event of meter reading not being provided either by the meter operator or the customer, the utility companies opt for an estimated non-smart meters reading. This is based on the customers consumption over the last few quarters.
This is true especially in case of customers who have shifted home recently. The consumption might have been theirs or of the previous tenant or home owner, but the consumption trend will not be right. Consider the consumption of 5 people living in the house and then the new owner lives alone. A trend in consumption in the past will give the new homeowner a bill that will be way higher than what he/she can possibly consume. This holds true especially in case of estimations. The smart meters eliminate all such possibilities and allow every home owner to know what he/she is supposed to pay from the time he/she moved into a property.
The other situation can be that the non-smart meters operator could not take the non-smart meters reading for a summer bill. Then the bill can get estimated basis the consumption during winters which will lead to a very high amount payable.