As your natural gas delivery company, North Shore Gas is committed to providing you with excellent customer service. In an effort to improve on this commitment, we are installing a new automated meter reading (AMR) device on customers' existing meters. This will ensure your meter is read every month and to only issue estimated bills on an exception basis.
Currently, most meters are read individually by North Shore Gas employees. However, since the size of the North Shore Gas service territory is extensive, meters are read every other month, resulting in estimated bills on the months the meters aren't read. Additionally, meters for large business customers are read with an older technology, so the equipment must be replaced.
The new devices also provide a framework for future benefits that will allow you to understand how your usage affects the price of your bill each month.
How will the upgraded meters be read?
The device will be installed on our current gas meter. As the device transmits reads automatically, a single truck can receive several streets' worth of devices at once by driving down a single one, providing an environmentally-friendly reduction in emissions and carbon footprint.
Our contractors, MZI, wear IDs
Frequently asked questions
- How will the upgraded meters be read?
- The device will be installed on our current gas meter. As the device transmits reads automatically, a single truck can receive several streets' worth of devices at once by driving down a single one, providing an environmentally-friendly reduction in emissions and carbon footprint.
- What do I need to do?
- North Shore Gas will send postcards several weeks in advance before crews install the device. North Shore Gas has contracted with MZI to complete the device installation. When crews arrive to install the device, in most cases, you will not need to be home, but our crews will need access to the meter. As a courtesy our crews will knock on your door upon arrival to personally notify you they will be entering your property to install the device. The contractors wear North Shore Gas/MZI identification at all times while on a worksite. If you are unsure whether someone should be working on the meter, you can ask to see identification or call North Shore Gas at 866-556-6004 to confirm.
- How long will it take to install the new meter?
- Installation of the device should take no more than 15 minutes, and you will not lose your natural gas service during the installation. For large meters, installation may take a bit longer. We will leave a door hanger to notify you when the work is done.
- What if the meter is inside my home or business?
- If your meter is inside your home or business, you must call 866-556-6004 to schedule an appointment for installation.
- What is the cost to upgrade this meter?
- There is no cost to customers to install the device on your meter.
- Can North Shore Gas cut off natural gas service remotely?
- No. This specific technology is only used to read the meter, and it does not provide us the ability to remotely disconnect service.
- Is my customer data safe?
- All of the information transmitted from the meter is encrypted. Even if the encryption were breached, none of the data includes customer names, information or addresses. The data transmitted is the total gas consumption number for the meter at the time of transmission along with the corresponding meter identification number.
- Are the devices safe?
- Yes. The meter reading devices are safe. Below are some facts about the system:
- The devices we are installing have been used by other utilities around the nation for the past 20 years.
- Our meter reading devices produce significantly less radio frequency (RF) exposure than other common electric devices, such as cell phones, baby monitors, wireless routers, laptop computers and microwave ovens.
- RF exposure from our meter reading device is far below — and more infrequent — than other common electric devices.
- In fact, these devices typically broadcast their signal for less than a minute at a time.
- The communication is usually from outside the customer's home, so exposure to radio waves is minimal.
- In addition, the meter and the wall behind the meter actually block much of the radio signal from entering the home.
- RF is measured in units of microwatts per square centimeter. A microwatt is very small — it's one-millionth of a watt.
- Held at your ear, a cellphone's RF signal would be 1,000 to 5,000 microwatts per square centimeter.
- Standing 2 feet from a microwave oven, the RF signal would be 50 to 200 microwatts per square centimeter.
- Standing 10 feet from our meter reading device, the RF signal would be 4 microwatts per square centimeter.
- 4th Quarter: Begin installing new meter reading devices.
- 2018: Continue device installations and automatic mobile meter reading.
- All North Shore Gas customers on new automated meter reading by end of 1st Quarter 2019.