Ameren Illinois Replaces Old Meters

July  22, 2014

      An energy company is changing how it serves its customers in Illinois. Ameren Illinois is investing over $3 billion for its 1 million customers across the state.  

      This year, the company launched a six-year plan to improve its electricity and natural gas delivery system. Spokeswoman Victoria Busch says that includes replacing old meters with more advanced meters. 

      "If there are any kind of voltage changes that are happening on the line, the meter can readjust and send alarms and flags and all kinds of information to help the service be more reliable and efficient for our customers."

      The new meters will send data to Ameren wirelessly, reducing the need for human meter readers. Ameren started installing the new meters at businesses and customers homes in central and southern Illinois last month. 

      "By the time we get to the Galesburg--those communities that are served out of Galesburg and Kewanee and LaSalle--it'll be about 2017. Some communities could be a little bit sooner than that, and some communities might be right at that 2017, sort of borderline of the end of that year."

       By the end of this year, customers will be able to access online tools for controlling their energy usage and costs with the new meters. By 2019, Ameren Illinois will have new automated and advanced meters, which Busch says will make the grid more reliable.