DAYTON — Vectren Energy Delivery of Ohio (Vectren) has launched a 15-month plan to install automated meter reading (AMR) devices throughout its west-central Ohio service territory.
Crews working for Vectren have begun installing encoder receiver transmitters (ERTs) on those remaining meters that do not yet have the technology, as well as upgrading meters already installed with older technology in Fort Loramie, Jackson Center, Minster, New Bremen and Sidney. When completed, AMR will enable Vectren to efficiently obtain actual reads by driving routes, rather than walking the routes, which will increase reads per day and eliminate issues such as weather, meter-reader turnover, animals and locked gates from obtaining actual reads.
AMR uses ERT devices, which are installed on natural gas meters in order to transmit meter information via radio signals to data collection devices located within specially-equipped vehicles. Powered by a battery, this technology operates at a low-power frequency and has been proven nationally in many utility installations not to interfere with any other electrical equipment such as computers, radios, satellite television, home security systems, mobile devices or pacemakers.
“Many of our Ohio customers have already benefitted from the addition of AMR technology to Vectren’s system,” said Colleen Ryan, Vectren Energy Delivery of Ohio president. “AMR reduces the number of estimated meter reads and is more convenient for customers who have traditionally had to provide the utility with access to inside meters or those behind locked gates. The implementation of these devices will result in more efficient meter reads.”
The majority of existing meters will be quickly retrofitted to house the new technology. The retrofit process can take as little as 10 minutes and doesn’t require any action on the customer’s part if the meter is located outside the home. In some cases, replacement of the entire meter may be necessary as a result of the current meter’s being unable to accept the new technology. If inside-home access or a complete meter change is required, customers will be contacted by a Vectren representative prior to the start of the required work.
The implementation of AMR is intended to improve the efficiencies of the utility’s natural gas infrastructure and enhance customer experience in the communities throughout its service territory. For information, visit vectren.com/AMR.
Vectren Energy Delivery of Ohio serves approximately 314,000 customers in all or portions of Auglaize, Butler, Champaign, Clark, Clinton, Darke, Fayette, Greene, Highland, Logan, Madison, Miami, Montgomery, Pickaway, Preble, Shelby and Warren counties.