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  #1  
Old 05-07-2010, 02:15 PM
Quasimodem Quasimodem is offline
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"I'll Show You How To Make Your Electric Meter Run Backwards"

Have y'all seen this guy's commercial?

He was on AMC a couple of early mornings ago, and this is what he said as he was hawking a book on saving money or "living green".

Now I know that meters are on their way out, if not gone completely, right, so I'm wondering if I should take him literally because I once heard many years ago, that if you set a small bag of ice cream salt on top of a meter, it would slow it down?

If he is serious, then wouldn't that come under the heading of theft of services, or is it the same as internet bomb-making instructions.

Thanks

Q
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  #2  
Old 05-07-2010, 02:17 PM
corkboard corkboard is offline
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Assuming he's serious, it wouldn't be theft of services. More likely his book will tell you to install solar panels on your roof and sell energy back to the electric company. That'll be $39.95.
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  #3  
Old 05-07-2010, 02:24 PM
The Tao's Revenge The Tao's Revenge is offline
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Yea if you generate your own juice, more then you use, you sell it back to the power company in many locations. The meter actually runs backwards if juice ends up flowing the other way.

Flipping it upside down will also reverse the current, from the meters perspective, getting the same effect, but not recommend.

The important thing to remember is one way is good for the environment, and the other way is very good for getting a honeymoon with Bubba at the county hotel.

Last edited by The Tao's Revenge; 05-07-2010 at 02:25 PM..
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  #4  
Old 05-07-2010, 02:37 PM
Page Fault Page Fault is offline
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Originally Posted by The Tao's Revenge View Post
Yea if you generate your own juice, more then you use, you sell it back to the power company in many locations. The meter actually runs backwards if juice ends up flowing the other way.
Last I heard, they were legally required to buy it back at the standard rate if you fed energy into the grid. That was, admittedly, about 10 years ago.
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  #5  
Old 05-07-2010, 02:39 PM
beowulff beowulff is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Tao's Revenge View Post
Yea if you generate your own juice, more then you use, you sell it back to the power company in many locations. The meter actually runs backwards if juice ends up flowing the other way.

Flipping it upside down will also reverse the current, from the meters perspective, getting the same effect, but not recommend.

The important thing to remember is one way is good for the environment, and the other way is very good for getting a honeymoon with Bubba at the county hotel.
I seriously doubt that turning the meter upside down down causes it to run backwards.
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  #6  
Old 05-07-2010, 02:40 PM
beowulff beowulff is online now
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Originally Posted by Page Fault View Post
Last I heard, they were legally required to buy it back at the standard rate if you fed energy into the grid. That was, admittedly, about 10 years ago.
This is regulated on a state-by-state basis, and most states don't have reasonable "net metering" laws.
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  #7  
Old 05-07-2010, 02:41 PM
The Tao's Revenge The Tao's Revenge is offline
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Originally Posted by Page Fault View Post
Last I heard, they were legally required to buy it back at the standard rate if you fed energy into the grid. That was, admittedly, about 10 years ago.
IIRC ANAL OMGWTFBBQ but last I knew it varied by state.
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  #8  
Old 05-07-2010, 02:54 PM
Don't Call Me Shirley Don't Call Me Shirley is offline
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Could you install a capacitor in the line before the meter, take the phase angle down to close to 0, then put another capacitor after the meter to take it back up, and steal electricity that way?
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  #9  
Old 05-07-2010, 02:57 PM
Algher Algher is offline
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My meter runs backwards during the day, and forwards at night - I have solar.

For the last two months I have made money on my electrical system.
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  #10  
Old 05-07-2010, 03:01 PM
Swallowed My Cellphone Swallowed My Cellphone is offline
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Originally Posted by The Tao's Revenge View Post
Yea if you generate your own juice, more then you use, you sell it back to the power company in many locations. The meter actually runs backwards if juice ends up flowing the other way.
We were looking into something like this for our house.
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  #11  
Old 05-07-2010, 03:18 PM
beowulff beowulff is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don't Call Me Shirley View Post
Could you install a capacitor in the line before the meter, take the phase angle down to close to 0, then put another capacitor after the meter to take it back up, and steal electricity that way?
How are you going to explain the two SUV-sized capacitors?
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  #12  
Old 05-07-2010, 03:22 PM
Don't Call Me Shirley Don't Call Me Shirley is offline
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Originally Posted by beowulff View Post
How are you going to explain the two SUV-sized capacitors?
What capacitors? Those were there when I moved in. I swear I've never seen those before.

Would it work, assuming I could hide the caps?
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  #13  
Old 05-07-2010, 03:36 PM
The Tao's Revenge The Tao's Revenge is offline
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Originally Posted by beowulff View Post
I seriously doubt that turning the meter upside down down causes it to run backwards.
http://www.patentstorm.us/patents/43...scription.html

Quote:
This invention
relates to watthour meters. In particular, the invention is directed to preventing the tampering with a meter thereby leading to the theft of electrical energy.

A problem which besets utility companies is the theft of energy achieved by meter tampering. One manner of stealing electricity is to reorientate a wattmeter to cause it to run backwards, thereby causing deregistration of energy usage. Thisreorientation requires that the meter be removed from its upright position in its socket and thereafter be reinstalled in an inverted position. Electric power service is maintained through the inverted meter and a rotating metering movement in themeter. The metering movement is rotated in the reverse direction because the line conductors are connected in reverse through the meter during this physical reorientation. Consequently, as electricity is used, the meter dials are driven reversedlyindicating reduced consumption, when in fact, electrical energy is actually being consumed. This reverse rotation of the metering movement in the inverted position is caused due to the reverse connection of the meter windings across the line conductors,thereby causing a phase reversal in the winding magnetic field driving the metering movement. With the increasing expense of energy, this thieving is becoming of a more serious nature.
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  #14  
Old 05-07-2010, 03:41 PM
Duckster Duckster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Algher View Post
My meter runs backwards during the day, and forwards at night - I have solar.

For the last two months I have made money on my electrical system.
But don't you have two meters? It is my understanding one meter records the amount of power you use off the grid and the second meter records the amount of power you feed back to the grid, with the difference being the net gain to you?
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  #15  
Old 05-07-2010, 03:45 PM
beowulff beowulff is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don't Call Me Shirley View Post
What capacitors? Those were there when I moved in. I swear I've never seen those before.

Would it work, assuming I could hide the caps?
This isn't my area of expertise, but:
1) I think you want to put a monster inductor in series, not a capacitor.
2) I don't think it's possible to put the meter out of phase, and then put the house loads in-phase. Maybe by putting the inductor before the meter, and a huge capacitor after it.
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  #16  
Old 05-07-2010, 04:30 PM
Skammer Skammer is offline
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Now tell me how to get my water meter to run backwards!
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  #17  
Old 05-07-2010, 05:07 PM
billfish678 billfish678 is offline
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Originally Posted by Skammer View Post
Now tell me how to get my water meter to run backwards!
Get some duct tape.

Drink lots of beer.

Pee really hard.

Profit.
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  #18  
Old 05-07-2010, 09:18 PM
Quasimodem Quasimodem is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by corkboard View Post
Assuming he's serious, it wouldn't be theft of services. More likely his book will tell you to install solar panels on your roof and sell energy back to the electric company. That'll be $39.95.
Umm, can I run a tab?

Boy if I did, I'd owe y'all big-time!

I think it's ironic that I can ask the dumbest questions and still get a whole long line full of answers!

Thanks

Q
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