Do you have a Smart Meter installed on your home? If you do, you might be wondering, are smart meters dangerous? Is there smart meter protection – maybe something like a smart meter guard? These are questions you should be asking.
If your home doesn’t already have a smart meter, chances are you will be getting one installed in the near future. DTE installed smart meters in Michigan before we moved a few years ago. Now that we live in Ohio, Duke Energy has installed new smart meter technology on our gas and electric meters. A smart meter can be on your electric meter, gas meter, and water meter.
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What Is a Smart Meter?
Smart meters are computerized electric meters that transmit electricity and gas usage to the utility using radio-frequency (RF) communication. These are the same waves that cell phones emit, but smart meters broadcast 24/7 at a power density 100 to 160 times that of a cell phone.”
Smart meters transmit pulses of wireless radiation thousands of times per day. The radiofrequency goes in all directions (including back into the house) and can pass through most materials such as wood and cement.
The field generated by the RF wave is EMF, electromagnetic field. It’s similar to the frequency range used in WiFi, or a phone. However, smart meters run at a higher power so they can transmit up to 25 miles.
Not only do smart meters transmit pulses of radiation, but they also create what is called “dirty electricity”. Dirty electricity is pulsed electromagnetic radiation flowing through your home’s wiring.
Dirty Electricity can create a wide range of health symptoms such as high blood pressure, tinnitus, insomnia, heart palpitations, and cognitive difficulties. It disrupts cellular communication and other biological processes in the body and promotes stress hormone production.
What are the Side Effects of Smart Meters?
Smart Meters expose us to constant electromagnetic radiation. We cannot turn them off, unlike other items that also produce EMR.
Some people with certain medical conditions should not be exposed to EMR because they can interfere with their condition. (i.e. people with pacemakers, metal implants, seizures).
Electromagnetic radiation can disrupt our blood-brain barrier, nerve transmission, cell reproduction, and damages DNA. The EMR can cause symptoms of insomnia, heart palpitations, headaches, anxiety, and memory problems.
In fact, the WHO/International Agency classifies radiofrequency electromagnetic fields as possibly carcinogenic to humans.
When it comes to privacy, smart meters are intrusive. They gather a lot of information. They are able to indicate spikes in usage throughout the day and can decipher between different pulses to understand what those spikes are associated with.
They can track items such as when you use your appliances, how long you use them, and what your patterns of sleep and wakefulness are. This data can then be shared with other companies.
Also, being a digital platform, this information is more vulnerable to hackers.
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Smart Meter Dangers – Unintended Consequences of Convenience
There are often unintended consequences associated with convenience, efficiency, and technology advancement. The growing trend by utility companies of leveraging smart meters is no exception.
I have had the privilege of interviewing David Sheldon who founded Michigan Stop Smart Meters. David holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics and Economics from Western Michigan University. He also earned his MBA from the University of Chicago. He has over 20 years of experience in the software development field.
In addition to the technical understanding he has of smart meters, he has also observed the rapid evolution of smart meter installation and subsequent effects over the past number of years.
You can listen to my interview here. Within the interview, David informs us about smart meters, dirty electricity, and the unintended consequences of smart meters, including health risks and privacy concerns.
Why are Utility Companies Installing Smart Meters?
As with most everything in our world, it comes down to money. Smart meters are no exception. Of course, there is a cost factor involved. By digitizing the meters, companies are saving on the cost of physical meter readers.
Utility companies try to frame smart meters as great for everyone stating that they keep energy affordable, reliable, and clean. They also say it gives you more control over how you use energy by logging into your account to see your daily energy usage.
It also gives the utility company the ability to turn off your utilities remotely if you haven’t paid your bill.
One positive thing to note about the meters is that they will automatically notify the utility company of power outages so repairs can happen faster.
Personal Experience with Smart Meter Installation in Ohio
Before installing the new smart meter on our home, Duke Energy mailed a postcard letting us know that it would be happening. I called them to see if I could opt out and get a different meter instead. They said it would cost me $25 extra per month in addition to a one time fee to have someone come out to install it.
In addition, the opt-out meter still poses some risk because it still generates dirty electricity. If you are unable to get an analog meter, it’s not worth getting an opt-out meter and paying the extra every month.
A few weeks after receiving the Duke Energy postcard, we had a representative from Duke show up at our door to replace our meter. Both my husband and I were home at the time.
Once he removed the existing meter, all of our power went out. Everything became quiet as the low hum of electricity and appliances stopped. When he put the new meter on, both my husband and I felt it. He was in our basement and I was closer to the smart meter. It was like a jolt of power swept through our home. He got a slight headache and my heart began racing.
How Can You Protect Yourself From a Smart Meter?
Of course, the best thing you can do to protect yourself from smart meter dangers is to not have the meter installed. Unfortunately, that is hard to do as the utility companies are automatically installing them and we need electricity.
If you are one of the fortunate who still has an analog meter, you will want to try to keep it, but it will come at a cost.
I would not recommend getting an opt-out meter. From what I have read, it doesn’t provide any true protection. They can actually be almost as bad as the smart meter as they are still a digital smart meter with the wireless turned off. It will also cost you extra money on your utility bill each month.
If you are like the majority of us who have a smart meter installed, I recommend adding a smart meter guard over the smart meter. It blocks the RF waves by absorbing the electromagnetic waves into the grounded stainless steel meshing.
The RF power is then shunted to the ground and dissipated. The spacing of the metal mesh will not allow the electrical or magnetic component of the RF waves to pass through it because of the field-effect it creates trying to pass through.
The meter will also block radiation in the house. “Once the Smart Meter Guard is installed over the glass portion of your smart meter your entire utility box and smart meter are covered in grounded metal that the RF cannot penetrate.”
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Smart Meter Guard Review
As I have mentioned many times before, I am grateful for companies that are offering healthier solutions to today’s problems.
After smart meters came on the market and were beginning to be installed on homes, people became rightfully concerned about the amount of RF and EMR radiation the meters were emitting. That’s when the company Safety First Shields was formed – to meet the huge demand for smart meter protection.
Since utility companies were offering little to no options from smart meter radiation, they decided to give people an option to shield themselves from the high-frequency radiation.
The engineers at Safety First Shields have over 20 years of experience in working with high power RF systems. They have a thorough understanding of how RF works and how to block it. In their development of the smart meter guard, they incorporated the Faraday cage principle which is technically proven to block RF waves.
When I received my Smart Meter Guard, it came with installation instructions and 2 pieces of rubber spacers. On the instructions, they said there are basically 3 types of smart meters. They provide 3 different instructions depending on the meter that you have. Of course, we have the least common utility box where the metal ring at the base of the meter is covered by the utility box lid, so I had to use the rubber spacer to install the guard. Even though I had to install the guard with the rubber spacer, it was easy to do.
How Effective Are Smart Meter Covers?
I have an EMF sensor, so I have used it to test near the smart meter. Before putting the guard on the meter, my sensor was registering around 90mG. After installing the guard, it typically registered between 1-5mG, with spikes to 11mG.
As someone who is sensitive to EMF’s, the difference that I noticed after installing the guard was in my sleep. I have been able to get more solid sleep. I recommend having smart meter protection and purchasing a smart meter guard.
Even if you are not already sensitive to EMFs, it’s still always a good thing to lower the amount of radiation in which you are being exposed. If your meter is on the back of a wall that goes into a room in your house, I would install this guard immediately for RF and EMF protection.