Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)
Over the next several months, KEC will begin replacing all electric meters in our system with new advanced digital meters. These upgrades will provide our membership and the cooperative with countless benefits and help us to serve you better.
Throughout this process, we're teaming up with Texas Meter and Device. TMD has worked with 10 Texas cooperatives; installing more than 1 million meters in the past five years.
Missed our article about AMI in the April '16 issue of Texas Co-op Power Magazine? Read the article here.
Advanced Metering FAQ's
AMI Frequently Asked Questions
• What is Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)?
Advanced Metering Infrastructure refers to systems that measure, collect energy usage, and interact with electric meters on request or on a schedule.
• What's different about the new digital meters?
These digital meters work in combination with a communication network that provides two-way communication; both transmitting and receiving information recorded by the meter.
• What information does the new meter record?
The new meters record energy usage, peak demand, energy used per hour, voltage, the number of times the meter has experienced a loss of power and the date and time for each of these events.
• What are the benefits of the updated digital meters?
- These meters allow us to expedite power restoration by quickly and accurately pinpointing outage locations. They also record power quality (such as blinks) so we can correct problems before they cause outages.
- With these meters KEC can both read, and in some cases, reconnect meters from the office. This technology reduces fleet mileage and expedites business processes. Better information on system demand and usage helps us distribute power more efficiently and cost-effectively.
- Operating more efficiently helps us reduce overall costs. The updated meters allow for daily usage data retrieval so members may be able to manage their own electric usage and costs.
- Data Retrieval
- In the future members will have the opportunity to view daily usage data in electronic format from their home PC, tablet or smart phone.
• How often will my meter record and transmit data?
Meter readings are transmitted back to the co-op every 4 hours.
• Does my account and usage information remain secure and confidential?
KEC has been protecting its members’ information for over 76 years. Our privacy policies prohibit us from releasing any confidential member information to unauthorized parties. The meter and associated communication system are equipped with security features to prevent unauthorized access.
• Do I have to pay for the updated digital meter or the installation?
No. Digital meters are a part of our normal cost to deliver the power you need. Reliability and efficiency improvements offset the cost of digital meters over conventional electromechanical meters.
• Will my rate change after the updated meter is installed?
No. The rate that you are on prior to the installation of the updated meter will stay the same.
• When will the new meter be installed at my location?
We will contact each member by mail approximately 30 days prior to the installation. If you have more than one service with us, this notice will indicate which service(s) are scheduled to be replaced in that timeframe.
Check back soon for a map with an approximate schedule.
**Schedule subject to change without notice. Notice via mail from KEC supersedes any timeline and/or schedule above.
• Will I lose electrical service during the installation?
Installing your updated digital meter should only take a few minutes. You will experience a brief interruption of power during this time. Please reset all of your electronic devices once the new meter is installed.
• Will KEC personnel need access to the meter after it is installed?
Yes. We will need to do routine maintenance and inspection of the meter which will require access to the meter. We may also need access to the meter when restoring outages.
• Are there any potential health impacts from a meter that can receive and send data?
No. Research conducted by the Electric Power Research Institute, the Utilities Telecom Council and others has revealed no health impacts from this type of meter. The radio frequencies emitted by the meter falls well below the maximum recommended in federal guidelines. Contrary to some misconceptions, the new meters emit radio frequencies (RF) only when responding to a request for data from the Cooperative office or when the data is pushed out of the meter once every 4 hours for less than a second. Compare this activity to a laptop with a wireless connection, which is constantly sending and retrieving data. A digital meter equipped to send and receive data has an RF density hundreds of times less than the RF density of a cell phones – and the meters are installed on the outside of your house not next to your ear.
• Will the updated digital meters interfere with home equipment?
No. The radio frequency of these meters will not impact other equipment in the home.
• Do I own the electric meter at my location?
No. The meter is owned by KEC.
• Can the co-op tell what appliances I am running inside my home?
No. KEC’s implementation of these meters does not include ZigBee®; a chip which would enable communication with in-home devices.
• Do I still need to notify the co-op when my power is out?
Yes. When you have an outage or emergency situation you are encouraged to call us. The new meters help us identify the extent of an outage and assist in verifying restoration.
• Can the Co-op remotely disconnect electric service using the new meters?
Yes. Some of the meters KEC installs will be remote disconnect/reconnect capable.
• How will I know when the meter has been upgraded?
A green door hanger will be left at your door or meter location when the meter is upgraded.
If our service contractor is unable to upgrade the meter, a red door hanger will be left with instructions on how to resolve this issue. The issue must be resolved before TMD returns to the location.
Success! The meter exchange was successful. No further action is required by the member.
We were unable to exchange the meter. Please correct the issue and call us to reschedule.
Additional questions? Concerns? Please call us at 830-780-3952.
You may also submit questions or comments using our web contact form.