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electrifier
electrifier, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 1629
Experience:  Electrical contractor and electrical inspector for over 24 years with phone and networking expertise
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I need to know what the meter multiplier should be for my electric

Customer Question

I need to know what the meter multiplier should be for my electric meter. Here is everything on the meter : GE Type M-50, 10CL, 120V, 4w Y, Kh 1.8, TA 2.5, Cat No 700X31G337, For use with instrument Transformers, 70 493 794. There are 5 dials at the top for Kilowatt Hours, and 3 dials at the bottom for Kilowatts. Please help as I think the electric company is screwing me !!
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Electrical
Expert:  High-Voltage replied 4 years ago.

I haven't seen one of those in years....they are all changing to a 5th jaw electronic lcd meters....

 

Can you take a clear picture of it for me? And I will read it off to you, as well as explain what each dial is...

 

 

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
The meter is probably 20 years old and it is on a commercial building I own across town. It would take me a while to go get the picture, but everything on the meter I have already listed with the exception of "2 Stator Watt Meter". There is also a blank plate to write in the multiplier, but someone has wiped it off (probably when I confronted them about it being wrong) If you can figure it out without the picture I would appreciate it. If you have to have it I will need about an hour to go over there.
Expert:  High-Voltage replied 4 years ago.

well...let me opt-out of this question in that case, and see if another expert remembers this meter to better assist you...

 

I am not sure how long this will take for them to respond, but in the meantime...it may very well be a good idea to get a clear picture that we can read...

 

Thanks!

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I will head over there right now and get the picture.
Expert:  High-Voltage replied 4 years ago.

ok. I hope we can read this for you...being that things were altered on it...

 

we will be here in the meantime, and like I said, I am not sure how long a response will take.

 

Thanks!

Expert:  electrifier replied 4 years ago.
Is this meter in a meter socket where the power passes thru the meter or is it used with current transformers that are in a CT cabinet next to the meter?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
There is a transformer box about 3 foot square sitting next to the meter. It looks like the meter has two underground 2" pipes coming up to the meter box. I assume it is looping underground to the tramsformer.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I have the pictures now, but don't know how to email them to you.
Expert:  Rich replied 4 years ago.
if you want to post pictures .. just click on the small tree picture icon in the top bar .. two clicks right of the smiley face ..
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I clicked the tree icon and the smiley face with no results. Do you need the pictures to answer my question? Everything printed on the meter is already listed with my question. I JUST need to know what the meter multipler should be !!
Expert:  Rich replied 4 years ago.

I was just trying to help you while Electrifier was off line .. what happened when you click on the tree ?/ ./. do you have pop-ups blocked? ..

He should be able to help you with the info you have posted ..

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I do not have popup's blocked, and clicking the tree icon did nothing. Is there an email address I can send the photo to? When will Electrifier be back online?
Expert:  Rich replied 4 years ago.
I am not sure when he will be back .. I can share my experiences with you if you wish
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
If you can calculate the meter multiplier for me, go ahead !
Expert:  Rich replied 4 years ago.

If you have your electric bills ,.. for the last 3 or 4 months .. and can post the meter readings . or the usage for me for each month .. If you do not have the meter rteadfings I think you can ghet them from the power company .. then we can figure the exqact method that they use in rating your use and charging your bill ..

 

most meters read straight out in kilowatt hours .. so the power company uses the difference in the readings to determine the usage .. that usage is multiplied by the rate per kilowatt hour that has been established is your bill .. there may be separate rates for different levels of usage .. and surcharges for over usage ..

 

with a series of bills and the readings we might have some insight into yopur situation

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
That does not answer my question !! I already know what the power company says is my meter multiplier, but I think it is wrong. I know that the meter multiplier is a function of the meter, i.e. a formula based on the CT number, Kh factor, TA, etc. I just need someone who knows the formula, or has knowledge of my model of electric meter to tell me what it should be. I can then go back to the power company and get them to change it in their database. If you don't know the formula, please just tell me and give my post to someone who does !
Expert:  electrifier replied 4 years ago.
Hello East. I've been trying to get back to you here but you had the question locked for Rich. Now I see you are offline. Get back to me when you are online again.
Expert:  electrifier replied 4 years ago.
Where are you located and who is your electric utility?
How long have you had this service?
Is the multiplier different now than it was in your first billing?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I am in Lexington, KY and the electric company is Kentucty Utilities. They have not changed their billing since I have owned the building. I just recently had a reason to question how much electricity I am using and all things point to the multiplier being wrong in their data base. I just need to know what you calculate it to be based on the codes and data printed on the meter. Can you help with that.
Expert:  electrifier replied 4 years ago.
You still never answered the question about a CT cabinet, if there is one. You talked about a transformer box next to the meter. Do you mean a square box with current transformers enclosed? Current transformers come in all different ratios and depending on the number of turns a wire makes around the transformer or if it only passes through one time the meter will be multiplied differently.
I need a photo of what you have to know just what you are dealing with. I need to see the face of the meter as well.
If you contact your public service commission who regulates the power company and tell them you think there is a problem with the metering of your electricity they will investigate it and get it corrected. If you can't get the image uploader to work here try this procedure and see if you can get me pictures this way:

[img]http://img2.pict.com/fe/77/20/3064073/0/uploadpictureinstructions.gif[/img]

electrifier, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 1629
Experience: Electrical contractor and electrical inspector for over 24 years with phone and networking expertise
electrifier and other Electrical Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Thanks for the link for uploading pictures, but the link comes back as not found. If I had your email address, I can email them to you, but I see nowhere in these reply boxes where I can upload them. If you do not want to give me your email address, I can post them to my companies website and you can go there and look at them. Just let me know. As far as the Transformer Cabinet, it is about 3 feet square , but I have not idea if it is a Current Transformer or what is in the cabinet. The pictures I took yesterday are only of the meter. I thought there was just a simple formula from the data on the face of the meter that would tell you the meter multiplier.
Expert:  electrifier replied 4 years ago.
There is some syntax problem in the line of code that posted, I'm not sure what it is. I'll find out and correct it.
We are not allowed to make direct contact with customers so I can't give you an e-mail address. You can post them to a website and give me the link so I can see them. That would be great.
<img src="" alt="graphic" />

Edited by electrifier on 3/15/2010 at 3:08 PM EST
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I posted the pictures for you at www.ccs-ky.com/meter
Expert:  electrifier replied 4 years ago.
The only way to tell what the multiplier is for the meter is to read the tag that is blank, measure it physically or ask the utility company. Nothing on the face of this meter can be used to determine the multiplier. I checked with my utility companies here to confirm this since they have nothing to do with your meter and your utility company. If you turn everything off in the building so the meter stops and then turn on a known load for a known amount of time you can determine the multiplier yourself. If you turn on 1000 watts of lights for 5 hours you should use 5 kw of power. If the meter shows 1 kw of power you know it is a multiplier of 5. They do sometimes use multipliers much higher than this. If this is a business operating on a daily basis you will need to measure all 3 phases of current and calculate it that way. This is more complicated that this other way but when you can't turn everything off it's the only way to do this. For this test you will need a clamp on amp meter. If the multiplier is 25 or 50 it could take a while to do this. Watch the meter and see how long it takes for the dial on the top right to move 1 number. This represents 1 kwh on the meter. If the multiplier is 50 then that gets billed at 50 kwh because the meter is geared down to 50:1. What multiplier did the power company tell you they were using for this meter?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
They claim a multiplier of 40, but I think it should be 10 ! My last bill was for 41640 kwh ($3100). That was after the 40 multiplier. The building is 12,200 square feet. My home is 10,800 square feet, and I used 6,000 kwh. Granted I have to add a gas bill of $400 to that, but it is still less than a forth of the office building, a comparable size building. That is why I think it should be a multiplier of 10, not 40. I quess at this point I will have to do what I was trying to avoid and that is hire a local electrician to come do some testing so I will have something concrete to go to the public service commission.
Expert:  Inactive replied 4 years ago.
Im just assisting here..... You can upload any pictures for me at www.pict.com, once there you can upload as many as you want. Just copy each link that starts with [ IMG ] at the beginning of the link, then paste each picture here in the posting box. Once you do that and hit reply, I will be able to see your pictures.

Here is a tutorial on how to do this. My tutorial will automatically scroll from one instruction to the other. So please be patient as this mini movie shows you how to upload, copy and paste pictures to this site so that I will be able to view them.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I have already posted the pictures, and they have been reviewed by Electrifier. In addition there doesn't seem to be a possible answer to my question. I have given up. Just close out this post.
Expert:  electrifier replied 4 years ago.
I double checked today with the head of Meter Services with Consumer's Energy in Kalamazoo Mi and he told me there is indeed no way to tell the multiplier for the meter without first knowing the CTs inside the meter, the ratio for these CTs, which determines the multiplier to use. He said a 40:1 is a very possible multiplier to use.
What amperage is the service for this building?
What is the voltage of the service?
Is there any manufacturing in the building or is it 100% office space?
Do you know anybody with a clamp on amp meter? They will cost $70 or more so I don't want to suggest you purchase one for a one time use.
Are you aware that there is a demand factor that goes into the electric bill as well as the total usage? This meter will record the maximum demand at any one time during the month.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Thanks for the info. Unfortunately, I do not know the amperage or the voltage of the service to the building. The building is strictly office space, no manufacturing, but it does have a two story elevator. I am aware of the demand charge, but I was told by Kentucky Utilities that it is the maximum average demand for each 15 minute period during the month. I couldn't see how this old meter could log that info, but maybe it does. At this point I think I will see if KU's meter services can meet me out there and pull the meter and prove to me that it is correct and matches the multiplier and demand factor that they are using. I appreciate your help.
Expert:  electrifier replied 4 years ago.
I appreciate the chance to assist you with your question. I work with our local power companies and even the MPSC from time to time so I'm familiar with all the dealings involving this sort of thing. A demand meter will indicate the maximum demand as you said above and display it for the reader at the end of the billing cycle. The meter reader will reset the indicator to 0 to start fresh for the next month.
If I knew someone in Lexington with a clamp amp meter I'd hook you up with them. Maybe KU can show you the amperage draw on all 3 legs and explain how it all is figured. I do know your power is 3 phase power from what is on the meter but I'm not sure of the voltage. There is a main breaker inside the building that has a size on the handle and this is the service size in amps. If there are no transformers inside the building to reduce the voltage I would expect you have a 120/208 3 phase service. Each single breaker would be 120 volts and 2 pole breakers would be 208 volts instead of 240 volts. This is how larger services are set up. It may very well be a 400 amp or 800 amp service in your building. It's hard to say but the power company, KU will be able to tell you when you meet them on site. That is your best bet and it shouldn't cost you anything. Tell them you want to know the meter is accurate in it's reading and multiplier. They should be happy to show you how it all works.
If you still have questions after meeting with them feel free to come back here and ask me whatever else you need to know. I'm here to help you.

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