I’d like to thank BC Hydro customers for their patience as we transition to a more modern electricity system. We’re replacing our old analog meters with new digital smart meters which will have many benefits for customers such as faster power restoration when there’s an outage and new tools to help you manage your energy use to save energy and money.
So far more than 1.1 million meters have been exchanged with very few problems. We know deployment of new equipment on this scale will not be perfect, but we’re doing our best to ensure our customers are not inconvenienced by any issues that may occur.
Over the past weeks some customers have asked whether a higher bill might have been caused by a new smart meter. We take every customer concern very seriously and investigate each one thoroughly. In the overwhelming number of inquiries we’ve determined that bills are consistent with past use; or there has been a manual meter misread which we immediately correct. If that doesn’t explain it, we look at every other possible source, including the meter.
As is the case with any mass-produced electronic device, there will be a small number of meters that have components that don’t work properly. Out of more than 1.1 million meters installed to date there have been very few meters that have had problems. The vast majority of these errors were caught by system checks and did not affect customer bills. In future, when our smart grid is operational, we will be able to detect many problems on our grid automatically and fix them much faster.
We appreciate our customers’ continued patience as we work to complete the installation of the new meters this year. To learn more about the new meters, visit bchydro.com/smartmeters. To find out more about your bill, sign up for an online account at bchydro.com or call our customer service team at 1-800-224-9376.
Donna McGeachie, BC Hydro Community Relations Manager, Lower Mainland and South Coast