Installation of new automated meters continues
UPDATED: Oct. 24, 2022
On behalf of UEC, Allegiant Utility Services technicians are continuing to replace existing digital meters on the UEC system.
Previous phases concentrated on installations in the Boardman area and east of Pendleton. Technicians are working in the Irrigon area the week of Oct. 24 and in the Hat Rock and Cold Springs areas the following week. About 34% of all meters on the UEC system have been changed to date.
During meter installations, disruption to members should be minimal.
On the day of the replacement, a member can expect to briefly lose power as a technician makes the switch. In addition, your next electric utility bill may show two meter readings: one from the old meter and one from the new meter.
Eventually, meters will be replaced on the entire UEC system. The new automated meters help UEC’s ongoing efforts to improve service reliability.
One of the primary benefits of the new meters, compared to the older models, is their ability to immediately notify UEC of an outage. A system that instantly reports the scope of an outage — the number of meters out and their precise location — will help make our response more focused and immediate.
In recent years, UEC has upgraded its control and data systems, outage management and field equipment to help operators at our command center in Hermiston more quickly detect and respond to outages with accurate location prediction, reducing the need to send a crew to manually check miles of power lines. The new meters build upon that system.
For more information about our meter replacement project, please call UEC at (541) 567-6414.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why does UEC use digital meters?
The data from digital meters helps us serve our members better. Our goals in installing new meters are to deliver better service, control rising operating expenses, improve system reliability through improved outage management and preventive maintenance, and provide our members with information they can use to make informed decisions about energy use.
Are there any potential health impacts from a meter that can receive and send data?
No. Research conducted by the Electric Power Research Institute, the Utilities Telecom Council and others has indicated no health impacts from digital meters. The radio frequencies emitted by digital meters falls well below the maximum recommended in federal guidelines. Contrary to some misconceptions, the new meters emit radio frequencies (RF) only when responding to a request for data from the co-op office, once every 15 minutes. Compare this activity to a laptop with a wireless connection, which is constantly sending and retrieving data. A digital meter equipped to send and receive data has an RF density hundreds of times less than the RF density of a cell phones – and the meters are installed on the outside of your house not next to your ear.
Your cooperative is a not‐for‐profit private business that is solely owned and operated by the members who receive electric service from our company. When our Board of Directors approves a policy or procedure for the use of new equipment and technologies, they do so knowing that it will also apply to their own homes. In using this type of metering system, we have not only deemed it to be a wise and safe choice for all co‐op members and their families but our own families as well.
How will I know if my meter has been changed?
Our contractor will leave a door hanger on your front door to let you know they have changed the meter. We will work to minimize any inconvenience. You do not have to be present during the meter change.
For more information about the meter replacement project, please call UEC at 541 567-6414.