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Dual Metering explained

Many governments are, in general, trying to encourage citizens to produce their own solar energy to reduce reliance on fossil fuel.  But households cannot rely entirely on their solar production alone.

While they may produce more than their need of power during the day, during the night, and in bad weather, they will have to rely on the grid. Storage is costly, at least initially. The best option is to have a grid-connected system which can feed to the grid and receive from it.

Different tariff and incentive schemes are in vogue, and accordingly, different metering systems are used.

Net metering is one such system. In this system, a bidirectional meter-one which can count forward and backward-is used.  The consumer pays for the ‘net’ energy used by him / her. In case the consumer supplies more energy than he uses, he is given credit for it at specified rates under specified terms.

Another system is dual metering.  Two separate unidirectional meters are used per consumer. All produced energy, or only surplus, may be supplied to the grid.

One meter records the total energy received from the grid, and the other records that fed in to the grid. This type of metering is useful when different rates apply to energy provided by grid and that by the consumer.

The rate at which the utility buys energy from the consumer producer is called the feed-in tariff (FIT). Feed-in-tariff was very attractive in Australia a few years back, but not so now. Current feed-in-tariff rates are about one third of the retail rate.

This means the consumer is encouraged to produce just about what he needs and not more.  Also the term feed-in tariff has now been replaced by the term ‘buyback’. In USA feed-in tariff is used in some states, but the rates may differ from state to state.

Summary of metering schemes:  net metering only requires one meter. A feed-in-tariff requires two. Time-of-use (TOU) requires a smart meter.

    Comment Section

    One thought on “Dual Metering explained


    By Matthew on 8 January 2018

    How do u wire a dual meter??
    Reason i ask something doesn’t seem right with how mine is wired.
    From the utility service mast line side i have to the top of the meter can and the load side of that meter Can I have to going the the load side of the other meter can and the line side of the second meter can is going to my main panel..

    This month my monitor system said i produced 850kwh but my utility bill says i only sent back 450kwh to the grid but consumed 2000kw from them bringing it down to 1550 kWh consumes from the grid .
    So if I’m consuming the same amount that I’m producing does it just offset and not register or should one meter show total produced and one show total consumed?

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