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California: Solar with PG&E smart meter

Discussion in 'California' started by Merrill, Jul 30, 2013.

  1. Merrill

    Merrill Active Member

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    Wondering if anyone in the Bay Area has solar with a smart meter?
     
  2. Stoneymonster

    Stoneymonster Active Member

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    We do, what would you like to know?
     
  3. Merrill

    Merrill Active Member

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    I have heard so many negatives about the smart meter, we just put a second panel and meter for the Tesla and they installed a smart meter. I have no problems with that, but now thinking about doing it with my house which is on E7 TOU and of course net metering. Did you notice any significant charge in your kWh used after switching, does it seem to be accurate. Thanks for your input.
     
  4. napabill

    napabill Active Member

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    You have solar? If so, from whom?
     
  5. Lloyd

    Lloyd Active Member

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    I have had no problems with the accuracy of the meter.
     
  6. liuping

    liuping Active Member

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    I'm in San Diego, so I have SDG&E, but we had similar report/claim of high bills when the smart meters first went in. I've looked at my billing and usage history and there is no significant increase for me personally.

    The whole house EV-TOU2 rates + Solar is definitely the way to go for me. It almost doubles the cost savings from the solar panels during the summer rate months (we generate at $.27/kWh, use at $.14/kWh)

    I had the solar before the Volt, so I feel a little bad that I'm not fully offsetting my usage now, but at least it still offset the cost. :) I plan on adding more soon to offset my full usage and some extra for the MS I should be adding later this year.
     
  7. Merrill

    Merrill Active Member

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    Napabill, The Solar Company out of Castro Valley.
     
  8. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    Moderator Note: Moved thread out of Model S to regional. Renamed to include area in title.
     
  9. gregincal

    gregincal Active Member

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    If you already have TOU net metering, then the smart meter will meter identically (i.e. you already have a "semi-smart" meter, not the old fashioned dial meter). The only real advantage is being able to look up stats on the PGE web site.
     
  10. Merrill

    Merrill Active Member

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    Solar installed with net meter in 2010, so assume it is not the old style analog meter. PG&E tells me if I opt out of the smart meter program for my 1st meter it will cost a one time fee of $75 and $10 monthly fee.
     
  11. gregincal

    gregincal Active Member

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    As I say, I don't see any reason to opt out. It's a very similar meter to what you already have, just slightly newer tech.
     
  12. Stoneymonster

    Stoneymonster Active Member

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    It works fine, the accuracy seems good. A lot of the anti-Smart Meter folks are up in arms about imagined harms from the RF transmitter as well.
     
  13. jammerdjc

    jammerdjc S Owner/Member

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    We originally had a TOU meter installed with our solar and it was swapped out 6-8 months ago for a smart meter. No problems so far (and we have had our true-up in the midst).
     
  14. Andrew Wolfe

    Andrew Wolfe Roadster 472 - S 440

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    I also had a smart meter put in to replace my TOU meter about 8 months ago. Haven't noticed any difference.
     
  15. astrotoy

    astrotoy Member

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    I also have had one for a year or more. My solar install was done by Solar City back in 2009 and our first meter just went backwards when the solar panels were working more than our electrical use, but no time of day calculation. The smart meter is much better for our car charging at night.
     
  16. Ampster

    Ampster Member

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    #16 Ampster, Jul 31, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2013
    My only complaint about the smart meter is that it does not run backwards unless told to do so by the head office. Many years ago I installed solar on the roof of an apartment I owned and the old dial meter ran backwards, I didn't occupy that apartment for several years but also received no bills because my net consumption was negative even though I had neglected to complete the paperwork for Net Metering. After the smart meter was installed I began getting trivial bills for the few hundred kiloWatts that I consumed at night. When I began charging my car I realized I hadn't completed the Net Metering agreement and immediately did so.
    EDIT
    The smart meter doesn't run backwards, it actually accumulates two totals, one for net production and one for consumption.

    I am with SCE but the meters all work the same. I also recently switched to SCE's TOU EV rate that pays me a high rate for what I generate on peak and charges me a lower rate for what I consume off peak. The smart meter allows me to look up my usage during the month so I can shift any usage if i am consuming more than I generate.
     
  17. gg_got_a_tesla

    gg_got_a_tesla Model S: VIN P65513, Model 3 Res Holder

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    Merrill, before I moved in June, my house in Newark had the exact same setup. Solar PV system installed by SolarCity in 2007 on the now-discontinued E7 TOU with the semi-smart digital meter through early 2012 when I initiated the switch to the smart(er) meter. Over the course of a year, I noticed no issues at all with the metering.
     
  18. Merrill

    Merrill Active Member

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    gg_got_a_tesla: Thanks for the info, just worried that the smart meter will somehow change my usage. Glad to hear from everyone that it did not, and it would be nice to see what items are using the most energy and when. I have kept a spread sheet since going on solar in 2010, so I know what the average usage on a monthly basis should be.
     
  19. miimura

    miimura Active Member

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    PG&E standard SmartMeters will not report negative values. The PG&E NEM SmartMeters report positive and negative totals, but this is not useful for calculating TOU bills. They have to process the raw SmartMeter data in order to get the total for each time period - Peak, Part-Peak and Off-Peak. The SmartMeter data is a usage amount in kWh for each 15 minute interval.
     
  20. JPP

    JPP Active Member

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    I just finished an install of a 16kW SolarCity system in the SF Bay Area. I am waiting for the building inspector to sign off, then PG&E has 30 days to swap out the meter. I have a pretty new SmartMeter, but SC tells me that it only reads 'forward', and, worse, if you turn on your solar system, even though you are theoretically backfeeding the grid, the meter continues to read 'forwards' (adding insult to injury). So I wait.....
     

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