Reading Your Meter

The Electric Department encourages all of its customers to read their electric meters regularly. Because your electric bill is based on the total number of kilowatt-hours you use on a monthly basis, it is important to understand and keep track of your electrical energy use.

Your electric meter is read monthly, and your consumption is determined by subtracting the previous month's meter reading from the current month's reading. Electric meters are highly accurate and dependable tools for electric consumption evaluation.

The meter operates like the odometer in your car, registering ones, tens, hundreds, and thousands of kilowatt hours. Most of the meters in Ashland are Direct read meters. They have digits and read like the odometer on your car. A few of our meters have clock dials. Each dial has a pointer like a clock hand. You can read your electric meter by following these steps.

The direct read meters are easy to read. Just read the numbers from left to right and write them down. The clock register is a little harder to read but we will explain below. Starting with the right dial, wright down the number indicated on the face of each dial. Always record the lowest number if the hand points between two numbers.

Sometimes a hand will seem to be pointing exactly at a number. To find out if the hand has really reached that number, look at the dial to the right. If the hand on that dial has passed zero, then you should record the number the dial appears to be on. Otherwise, record the lower number. Continue until you have read all the dials. After you get your meter readings. Subtract last months or yesterdays reading from the one you just took. This will tell you how many kilowatts of electricity you used between readings.

Try reading your electric meter every day for a while. Subtract the previous day's reading from the current reading to get an idea of how many kilowatt hours you are using. Experiment with different thermostat settings and with the air conditioner or electric furnace off completely. Then you can use this information to control how much electricity you will use for cooling or heating.

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