Electric Meter

March 15, 2024

What is an Electrical Meter?

Electrical meters track how much energy a property consumes from the grid. This meter only spins in a forward direction and the total usage reflects in the electric bill payment.

Does My Meter Need to be Upgraded for Solar?

Your electrical meter will need to be upgraded when you install a solar system so that it can begin to track your energy production as well as your consumption. The upgraded, bidirectional meter spins backward and forward, resulting in a net surplus or deficit at the end of each pay period. 

Bidirectional meters make net-metering possible, the solar incentive allowing the build up of energy credits for excess energy sent to the grid. 

What Happens in a Net Surplus and Net Deficit?

When your meter shows that you’ve generated more energy than you used, resulting in a net surplus, your utility company will provide you with energy credits for the excess energy supplied to the grid. You will be able to utilize these credits at a later time when your meter ends in a net deficit. On the other hand, if you have a net deficit, meaning you’ve used more energy than you produced, you will need to pay your utility company for the additional energy consumed.

Who Upgrades My Meter After Solar Installation?

Your meter will be upgraded by your utility company after your solar installation is complete. Since most meters are on the outside of the home, you do not need to be home when they make the swap. Oftentimes, the utility company will come by unannounced but you’ll know that the meter was changed if you lose power for a few seconds. Once your meter is replaced, the solar system can be activated.