Regulators to Oncor: "Quit Charging for Smart Meter Tests"

Customers charged $25 for test will have fee refunded, utility says

By Lita Beck
|  Thursday, Mar 11, 2010  |  Updated 10:30 PM CDT
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Regulators to Oncor: "Quit Charging for Smart Meter Tests"

NBCDFW.com

If you want your smart meter tested, you don't have to pay $25.

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The Public Utility Commission told Oncor Electric Delivery not to charge customers who want their smart meter tested.

Customers across North and Central Texas are blaming the digital meters for high power bills. But Oncor says higher bills are the result of this winter's unusually cold weather.

Customers can request a free meter test once every four years. Additional tests cost $25.

Oncor says it has so far conducted more than 2,000 tests of smart meters for customers who have asked, the Dallas Morning News reported. About half of those customers have been billed for the test, according to the newspaper.

The PUC said Thursday the four-year period should reset when a home gets a new meter. Oncor said people who have paid for a meter test will be refunded the $25 fee.

The cost of the one "free" test every four years is built into a customer's rate.

The PUC has ordered independent testing of the controversial smart meters. Oncor also launched its own tests this week in hopes of demonstrating the meters' accuracy.

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