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11 August 2019: Smart meterA smart meter display

Well, what do you know? I’ve at last found a use for our smart meter. The only advantage I have got out of it so far is the use of the display as a free additional clock. It’s on the shelf above my computer. We have only had an electricity smart meter fitted. We have a separate gas supplier, which has twice tried to fit a smart meter for the gas only to discover that they can’t link it successfully to the existing electricity smart meter.

The electricity meter has been more use over the last few days, though. I noticed that our electricity usage seemed to have shot up suddenly. This was brought home to me yesterday when I discovered that we had consumed nearly a pound’s worth of electricity even though we had been out all day.

I decided to investigate after breakfast this morning. I tried turning things off to see how much electricity they were consuming. As I expected, the controls and the pump on our gas boiler were using the most but even with the boiler switched off we were still using a lot of electricity. That puzzled me as, apart from the boiler the equipment consuming the most electricity was our modem and even that was quite minimal.

I then went round the house checking to see whether anything had been left on by mistake. Nothing had.

After that I went into the garage to see how much electricity the timer on our pond fountain was using. As soon as I went into the garage I realised that the neon light there was still on. Turning that off solved the problem!

One question remains, though. Why was a neon light taking so much electricity? We thought they were supposed to be low-energy.