In Kinston, the city is preparing for the arrival of smart meters this fall.
Kinston neighborhoods will soon be outfitted with new accessories, smart meters. It’s a tool used to monitor both water and electricity consumption by residents. This is a project that has been in the works for 4 years.
“What we will be doing is replacing all of our electric and water meters in Kinston,” said Steve Miller, Assistant Public Services Director for City of Kinston, “we have about 23,000 meters for the customers we serve for those two services.”
The city will begin replacing current meters with “Advanced Metering Infrastructure” meters.
“Basically its advanced metering that communicates two way,” said Miller, “typical meters may just send us the reading every once in a while, but with a smart meter we can ask it questions for additional information.”
The meters will send alarms such as power outages or leaks in the water system. It’s also a great feature for buildings that may just have temporary residents.
“Some of the electric meters have a remote disconnect capability,” said Miller, “so if we have apartments people move in and out of all the time, we can be able to connect and disconnect them by the push of a button instead of having to send people out the field each time.”
Another great feature- customers with an online account can monitor daily usage in real time and then adjust as need be.
“They can watch through the month how much energy they use each day in the electric meter or how much water they use each in the water meter,” said Miller, “so they can get some idea how much usage they’ll have by the end of the month when they get their bill and be prepared.”
Miller says the city is expected to save close to $600,000 a year with the new system.
AMI meters for water and commercial customers will arrive in October, while electric residential meters will arrive in January