Last week you may have spotted a NZ Herald article talking about recent research into the accuracy of smart meters.

In the study, Dutch researchers identified accuracy issues in smart meters that used Rogowski Coil sensors, causing some tested meters to have higher readings than the actual amount of electricity that was being consumed; and Hall effect sensors, which caused smart meters to have a lower reading than the actual consumption.

Understandably, Flicksters have some questions about whether these issues could be impacting their smart meter readings. So we contacted the metering companies – VAMS and Metrix – to get you some answers.

Here at Flick, we work closely with NZ’s metering companies to ensure that our customers are getting accurate and timely usage readings on their power consumption.

Vector Advanced Metering Services (VAMS) has told us they’re confident their meters meet or exceed the metering accuracy standards set down by the Electricity Authority. Here’s what they had to say on the matter:

“VAMS meters are designed and tested to meet or exceed the metering accuracy standards, specifying the accuracy requirements when measuring harmonically distorted energy.

VAMS meters don’t use Rogowski coils or Hall effect sensors. They use current transformers and/or shunts and digital signal processing methods that have had decades of R&D, testing and global deployment under varying conditions.

The metering accuracy standards are mandated by the Electricity Authority and based on global best practice.”

Likewise, Metrix assured us that they don’t deploy any meters with Rogowski Coils, and only a very small proportion (<1.5%) of their meters use Hall effect sensors, which have passed the necessary approvals, vendor testing and laboratory testing. Their full response follows:

“The vast majority of meters deployed by Metrix use Current Transformers or Shunt Sensors. All the electronic meters owned by Metrix have been type approved to these standards by accredited and traceable international laboratories.  Metrix also operates an IANZ accredited test laboratory to ensure the continuous accuracy of its meters.

  •    A very small proportion (<1.5%) of Metrix electronic meters employ Hall Sensors – these meters have passed all applicable type approvals, vendor testing and Metrix laboratory testing. Metrix has not deployed any meters with Rogowski Coils.
  •    The metering industry in New Zealand adheres to high standards of Metrology and manufacturing as set by the Electricity Authority.  All energy metering equipment used for billing and reconciliation purposes is required to meet these standards.
  •    It should also be noted that the research referred to in the article appears to be isolated to the metering available in the Netherlands.”

In New Zealand the metering industry has to comply with metrology and manufacturing standards set down by the Electricity Authority. The regime is designed to ensure all energy metering equipment used for billing and reconciliation purposes is as accurate as possible.

Based on their responses to our enquiries, we’re confident in the accuracy of both VAMS and Metrix smart meters, but as always we’ll keep an eye on research and developments that may affect our Flicksters. It’s all part of being a fair and honest company and delivering NZ’s Fairest Power Deal.

It always pays to be a #CleverFlicker though. Use your Flick tools to keep an eye on your power usage – if you spot any sudden changes in your electricity consumption that could be related to faulty equipment, including metering, please get in touch with us at hello@flickelectric.co.nz or call us 0800 435 425. Our team are happy to help!

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