Sunday, February 17, 2013

Another smart meter option

There's a lot of articles and information about smart meters. There are serious concerns about privacy and the radiation emitted by the new meters.

People who don't want the meters on their homes have taken a number of legal steps to prevent them from being installed. Results have varied. Sometimes the power company backs off, but there are cases where the homeowners have been arrested.

Clif High at Half Past Human has some interesting methods of monkey wrenching the system.

I've another solution. Opt out of the grid. Rather than put your time and energy into fighting the system, just stop doing business with them. That does a number of fine things. The power company loses a customer and your monthly check. Government loses income from the taxes paid by the power company on your energy purchase. You become energy independent and free from those monthly bills.

I know it's not easy, but it's easier than it used to be. There's plenty of information out there on alternative energy. The technology is proven. Don't think of it as an expense but as an investment in yourself. Buying solar panels pays a lot better than money in the bank.

I'm about 80% energy independent. My solar electric system has provided many years of clean power for daily use. During times when the grid goes down, the system provides for my basic needs for as long as necessary.

Why do I even have the grid? It's for times in the winter when the sun rarely shows its face. Days are short, people are inside more, so power use goes up a bit. The grid picks up the slack.

If I decided to pull the plug on the grid, I'd make a few long term changes. I've a medium sized generator that I could tune up and put in service. That could fill any immediate shortfalls. After that, I'd probably swap out my old refrigerator for a newer more energy efficient one.

My hot water is now partially heated with electricity. However, I've got solar hot water in the summer and in the winter a water coil in the woodstove would do the job. My old woostove had that option but I just haven't gotten around to installing it on the new woodstove. So I've been lazy. Flicking the power switch is too easy, especially when there has been other things requiring my attention.

Now how do I plan on getting the meter off the house? Easy. I'll tell the power company that I'm doing construction on the house and need them to remove the meter and wires. This sort of thing happens all the time and doesn't set off any alarm bells with the power company. Once the meter's removed, I just won't call them back.

Another method is to do what my uncle did with the water company. He had a private well drilled and no longer wanted to be connected to the city water company. The city refused to remove his water meter. Finally, he stopped paying the monthly bill. What did they do for nonpayment? They shut down his water and removed the meter.

My idea is not so much to fight the system to get it to serve my needs. Instead, drop out of the system completely.



  1. Sort of crazy the things a guy has to do sometimes.

    1. You do what you have to do if something is important to you.

  2. Just one more reason for me to go to a live aboard option. Wind and solar just make sense on a boat.

  3. You are so right Sixbears. Once again.
    Opting out is the thing to do.
    It may seem difficult but which makes more sense?
    Going out to work each day to earn money to pay for your electricity or going out to work to earn money to pay for your own electricity generating plant and become self sufficient at the same time?
    I've lived off grid and completely self sufficient as far as electricity is concerned for around 23 years.
    It's a wonderful feeling to not know what a power bill looks like and to be self sufficient too.
    Try it you'll like it...

    1. I've eliminated the sewer, water, and TV bills. The electric bill is tiny, but annoying.

  4. Around here they hit us with connection fees my water is 19.25 service fee with a average 12.oo water charge.The county has 4 out of its 5 last term members in prison for acepting bribes. THey are looking at taxing even non users of sewer to pay off its debt.Laws are on the books to prevent opting out the beast demands their blood money.Not only are we wage slaves our pay script must be spent at the discretion of the corrupt.Anyone becoming self sufficient will be held in contempt by those that need them dependent.Sorry for rambling around here is a poster for voting with your feet.

    1. Sometimes the only thing to do is to vote with your feet to get away from the criminals. On the bright side, there still are places in the US where the rules are a lot looser and the local government honest.

  5. hey sixbear i need a favor ask christine on the yellow teardrop blog to add name/url to her comment as line.I am a tearjerker and would like to thank her for a lot of her work posting great pics and posts.Have fun in the sun.MY wife picked up the atlas last nite i may get to head south myself for a week;]