Reading your electric meter is an easy way to keep your own record of your electric usage. Reading your electric meter on a monthly basis can help you verify the amount of electricity that you are using and monitor your energy saving efforts. Our goal is to give you greater control over your home energy and to provide you with the tools and information you need to keep your electric bills down.

Here's how to do it:

Read the dials from right to left. Dial one must make a full revolution before dial two can move one space.



Write down the number that the pointer has just passed, not the number that it is moving towards. Read the first dial clockwise, the second dial counterclockwise, and continue to alternate from dial to dial. If the pointer appears to be directly on a number, the only way to be sure it has reached that number is whether the dial to the right has completed its revolution or passed zero.

Write the numbers down from left to right, to get the total kilowatt-hours registered on the meter. In the above example, the number is 17592. To determine usage for the month, subtract the previous month's reading from this month's reading.

Just like the odometer of a car, the register turns over after the last dial on your meter has completed a full revolution (100,000 kilowatt-hours on a five-dial meter). Each time the meter turns over, a "1" must be added in front of the next reading in order to compute the number of kilowatt-hours used.

Have a smart meter? Learn how it works.