I know sub metering will help me manage my energy, but I need to make a business case for it. What sort of savings can I expect?
A. Measuring consumption accurately and in suitable detail is a fundamental tool of energy management. However - it is a tool, and therefore its impact will depend on effective and timely use of the information it provides. That said almost all our systems result in immediate and permanent savings, and the impact of metering systems is well documented. Actual savings differ between manufacturing and commercial/public sector sites, with commercial locations generally providing greater savings in percentage terms. However in either case improvements of over 10% per annum are regularly achieved.
A wired approach isn't practical for my organisation - can you install a wireless system?
A. Indeed we can. Elcomponent has licensed VHF radio equipment to ensure adequate power and reliable performance. With our kit, poor radio performance is a thing of the past. However it's important to remember not to use radio if cabling can be installed cost-effectively as a cabled connection is fundamentally more reliable. For this reason most Elcomponent systems use a combination of LAN, secondary cabling and radio/GPRS to achieve a cost effective solution.
We have many existing meters which are currently manually read. Is it possible to use them in an AMR system?
A. The short answer is 'it depends'. Many existing meters of all utility types can be utilised or upgraded for compatibility, but even if they need replacing, it is substantially cheaper to replace an existing meter than install a completely new one, so the replacement cost may be lower than expected.
We need to install new meters but we can't afford to shut any supplies down. Is this feasible?
A. In most cases we can install new electricity meters without any significant shut down of supply. The installation of gas and water meters usually requires a short interruption, but this can normally be managed by prior arrangement.
We need to pick up data from existing tariff meters. Is this part of your service?
A. Almost all the systems we install require connections to the main tariff meters regardless of the number of additional sub meters involved. Elcomponent handle connection formalities with your supplier/meter operator, including meter replacements if required. Elcomponent is also fully approved by National Grid and other major gas suppliers to make data connections to gas meters.
Our IT department needs to approve all hardware that is to be connected to the LAN. How do you handle this?
A. We prefer to present to IT as early as possible in the process, to ensure that we fully understand the site procedures and restrictions in terms of networking. This also allows us to ensure that our customers are fully informed regarding our hardware interfaces and software platform requirements.
We already have a radio data system on site. Will your equipment interfere with it?
A. Definitely not. All our radio kit used an OFCOM licensed VHF frequency that is exclusively used for AMR purposes.
We already have a BMS on site. Why do I need a separate metering system?
A. Whilst being extremely capable and configurable, BMS systems do not generally provide the focused user-interface that an aM&T system does.
We have already invested in M&T software - can your system link to it?
A. Elcomponent works closely with most of the major M&T providers and we can tailor our system to provide data in almost any required format, to any required destination - either site or cloud based.
We have our own installation team (or a preferred contractor) can they install your system?
A. We prefer to offer a turn key solution where ever possible but we will happily work with a competent contractor if required. We will always carry out final commissioning regardless of which installation team is used.