Your electric meter measures the amount of electricity you use in a kilowatt-hour (kwh). One kwh is equal to using 1,000 watts of electricity for 1 hour. Your monthly electric bill is based on the amount of kwh you use.
The examples above shows the dials ona five-dial meter. (Most meters have five dials; some have four.) To read the meter, begin with the right-hand dial (e) and record numbers right-left (e-a).
The pointers of the dials move in the direction of the arrows. When a pointer is between two numbers (as in dial “d”), write down the lower number, the number the pointer has gone past. If the pointer is on a number, look at the dial to the right of it. If the pointer has not passed 0, record the smaller number. If the pointer on the dial to the right has passed 0, record the number closest to the left pointer. The example above would be read as 73256.
If your electric usage has increased and you have been unable to justify the increase with any changes in the weather or in your normal living routine, try the following steps to help locate the electric circuits with the greatest energy draw:
Step 2: At the main electrical box or breaker in your home, turn off breakers one-by-one. After each circuit breaker is disconnected, go back to the electric meter and see if the disc has reduced it speed.
Step 3: Repeat Step 2 until the disc rotation slows dramatically. Go back to the electrical panel and determine what circuit breaker and appliance is responsible for the large electric use.
A fast spinning meter disc could come from several common sources. As you search for the cause of unusually high electric consumption in your home, check for the following red flags:
Remember, if you need assistance in locating the source of high electric use, contact MEC.
To calculate the cost of the energy use, multiply the number of kilowatt-hours by the cost per kilowatt-hour charged by your energy supplier.