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  • Dale Rouessart

Why a Check Meter is Absolutely Essential

A check-meter is a regular meter installed to measure the specific utility usage of a site, or of a part of a site, or of a particular piece of equipment.

Power suppliers or equipment dealers sometimes supply them where there are questions or considerable interest in how much electricity, water or gas a specific piece of equipment uses. The check meter may be used over a period of several days, months, or years, or indefinitely.

Why would I need to do this ?

There are many reasons why you would want to double check that you are being measured and billed correctly.

Meters can go faulty,

  • can be installed incorrectly,

  • calibrated or programmed incorrectly.

At Archon we find all kinds of errors on a daily basis, and always question a meter's validity until proven correct.

Benefits of Check Metering

  • A smart check meter records the data every 30 min so it eliminates any estimates or averaging that may be be billed for, it gives you a true reflection of what your actual consumption really is.

  • It acts as an early warning should something go wrong with the upstream council meters, or downstream tenant or department meters. This extra balancing measure often reveals abnormalities and enables you to act quickly on faults. It doubles up as an assurance that your site is healthy and gives you the data to act quickly.

  • It is essential in breaking down your site into cost centres. Different cost centres can be identified and separated from the total usage of the site. Each cost centre can be assigned a cost value and their individual usages recorded and monitored. For maximum accountability we often recommend the installation of some strategically placed group meters further dividing up the campus into separate manageable cost centres.

  • This also assists with budgets amongst other things. How much will an extra warehouse affect my consumption and will this push me into another tariff bracket? Will it be cheaper to open another factory in another area instead?

  • It can be used to measure the usages of new machines in your factory, to factor in the cost of sales of a process into the selling price of your products.

  • Acts as an added "insurance" when an upstream or downstream meter goes faulty or you receive a suspicious bill.

These are some of the things that we come across on a daily basis, in which check metering has been instrumental in helping our clients make sense of what has occurred:

  • Council or other meters not calibrated correctly, or programmed incorrectly.

  • Tenant meters being tampered with or become faulty.

  • Client billed incorrectly on their time of use, or step tariff usages (Kwh allocated incorrectly to the incorrect bracket).

  • Client billed incorrectly on Kwh in general.

  • Client billed incorrectly on KVa (Demand) used.

  • Incorrect Tariffs applied in general.

  • Meters stolen.

  • Actual readings not captured correctly in reading and billing stages (human error).

  • Frequent Estimate readings not rectified correctly.

  • Water Leaks.

As you can see, there are many reasons why it is so important to have your finger on the button regarding your utilities, from hardware malfunctions to human error, the room for mistakes is always there, and normally hits you in the pocket when you when you least expect it.

Most Companies keep a very tight ship when it comes to their petty cash account for example, yet they do not know what's going on with their utilities. It is already a grudge purchase to start with, so why leave it unattended, hoping it will get better by itself. Why be negligent with your utility accounts which could run into the hundreds of thousands.

It is better to know that these are handled by the leading responsible professionals in this field. Archon has decades of metering and monitoring experience, we are leaders in the Utility Management arena and our software is cutting edge. We also have many years of experience in dealing with the various councils in getting these errors rectified.

Give us a call today and let us see how we can measure, monitor and audit your utility accounts and tenant billing for your business on a monthly basis, so that you are in control of your your expenses, so you don't get any surprises when you least expect it.

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