Smart Meters In Spain: Facts And Myths
By the end of 2018, smart meters will be in all homes across Spain. There are several advantages to using a smart meter, but still lots of myths around. We’ve teamed up with Watiofy, experts in energy, to bring you the facts and dispel the myths.
How Can You Know If You Have A Smart Meter?
Not sure whether you have one installed already? Get out your last bill and check for the word “telegestión”.
Fact 1: Smart Meter Installation Is Free
Installation is free, but you still have to pay monthly rental on your bill.
Some people may decide to buy a smart meter in order to save over the long-term, but according to some engineers smart meters don’t tend to last as long as traditional meters so you could be better off renting.
Even though the changeover from a traditional meter to a smart meter is free, if any additional works are required to connect the new meter then these will be charged to the client.
Fact 2: Monthly Rental Is More Expensive
Although the difference isn’t very high, the monthly rental on your bill for a smart meter will be around 0.30€ more than with a traditional meter. The rental price is fixed by law, but we expect companies to lobby for an increase.
Those with a split-rate (night) tariff will actually save with a smart meter. Previously you would have paid two rentals and with the new meters you only need one.
Fact 3: With Smart Meters You Don’t Need a Trip Switch
All electricity contracts include a power capacity limit: the higher the kW contracted the higher the monthly rate. With a traditional meter you would also require a trip switch (or ICP in Spanish), with new smart meters the limit is programmed in.
Tip: Some people who already have smart meters have been fined on their bills for not having an ICP. If this is your case get in touch with your company quoting the National Energy Commission’s report 23/2009 which states that the an ICP is neither necessary nor advisable for use with smart meters.
Myth 1: My Electricity Contract Will Have To Be Changed
Moving over to a smart meter does not affect your current contract and tariffs (for usage and power capacity).
Reps that use cold calling to try and bully consumers into changing tariffs based on having a smart meter should be ignored.
Myth 2: Companies Can Force Consumers To Increase The Contracted Power Capacity
If your trip switch is actioned frequently, this will be registered by a smart meter. However companies can only advise you to increase the contracted power capacity.
Myth 3: Smart Meters Use WiFi And Your Internet Speed Will Be Affected
Not true! Smart meters use the existing electricity network to transmit data.
Fact or Myth? Smart Meter Firmware Can Be Modified Remotely
Although not confirmed by any electricity company, theoretically the firmware for the smart meter could be modified remotely. Any modifications should be registered and notified by your company.
Top Tip: Reduce Your Bills Now!