I AM MY OWN METER READER


Will PSE&G Certify Me?

Hand Or Fingers Needed

Public Service Electric & Gas (PSE&G ) sent me a letter-size sheet with 6 sets of 4 pictures of dials without hands. It says to “draw the hands on the dials” and “then place this card [there is no card] in a window where it can be seen by the meter reader for three days after your scheduled read.” The instructions are crammed into one diagram-defying sentence needing clarification:

Hands? Why does PSE&G want me to draw hands? (A big hand could cover up the numerals.)

Maybe PSE&G means fingers? Can I vary how many fingers on each dial?

Place the card in a window where the meter reader can read it? Which window does PSE&G have in mind? Our house has 23 different ground floor windows where this sheet could be placed. If I saw anyone walking around our house looking in the windows, I’d call the cops. Does PSE&G think the police would believe a story like “I was just looking for dials with hands or fingers drawn on them”?

Leave it in a window for three days “after your scheduled read”? If the meter person comes on the scheduled day, why would I put it in the window the next day for three days? And be the only one who sees it?

If I misplace the sheet or forget to put it up, will PSE&G shut off power or lower voltage until I comply?

If we’re gone on one of those 3-day periods, should we leave a note in the window saying the sheet will return next time?

If I read any of the meters wrong, will I be overcharged? Undercharged?

Will PSE&G lower its rates for good meter reading? Am I displacing meter people? I like the meter people. Why would I want to put them out of work?

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