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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

The electric power industry is enhancing the electric grid to meet the growing electricity demands of our digital society. In fact, the typical U.S. home now has, on average, almost 25 electronic products—99 percent of which must be plugged in or recharged. And, despite continuous energy-efficiency improvements, the U.S. Energy Information Administration predicts that consumer demand for electricity is projected to increase 31 percent by 2035.


Advancing the nation’s grid—which was first built in the early 20th century—will allow technologies to be implemented that will enhance electric reliability and benefit customers. Check out these FAQs to help you learn more about the smart grid and the benefits it brings.


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Why does the electric grid need to be updated?

What is the smart grid?

Electric companies are enhancing the nation’s power grid and transforming it into a digital network that will deliver more reliable power to homes and businesses across the country. The modern grid will utilize telecommunications and information technology infrastructure to enhance the reliability and efficiency of the electric delivery system. The smart grid will meet the growing electricity needs of our digital economy more effectively.


The added intelligence of the modern grid will help to make it more reliable by automatically taking actions to help reduce service disruptions—or to minimize the effect of disruptions when they do occur. A more efficient grid also reduces the need for electric companies to build more power plants. Together with new digital smart meters—which provide two-way communication between customers and their electric companies—the modern grid will allow customers to better understand their electricity usage and to manage their electric bills more effectively.


How will customers benefit from the smart grid?


What are smart meters?


How do smart meters differ from conventional meters?


What are the benefits of smart meters for electricity customers?


When will I receive a smart meter?


How do I know that the electricity usage data being sent to my electric company is accurate?


Does the radio frequency (RF) signal produced from smart meters cause any health effects?


How do electric companies protect the privacy of customers’ data?


Straight Talk About the Smart Grid

Download a copy of FAQs about the smart grid.

Smart Meters and the Smart Grid

See how smart meters and other smart technologies will benefit customers.

What Do Electricity Customers Think?

Check out our videos to see what electricity customers think about the smart grid.