Smart Meter Opt-Out FAQ
- What is the Smart Meter Opt-Out Program?
The Smart Meter Opt-Out Program is for residential customers who prefer not to have a smart meter at their home. For a fee, this California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC)-approved program allows customers to choose an analog meter for their home instead of a smart meter.
- Who can opt-out?
Any residential customer can opt-out. However, the request must be made by the SDG&E® customer of record (family members, neighbors, or landlords cannot act on behalf of another customer).
- What are the costs to opt-out of a smart meter?
Regardless of the type of meter you currently have at your home, there’s a $75 initial fee to opt-out. You’ll also have a $10 monthly charge added to your SDG&E® bill for a three-year period.
If you’re a CARE customer, the initial fee is $10 and you’ll have a $5 monthly charge added to your bill. These costs are per service address, not per meter.
- Why do I have to pay to opt-out of a smart meter?
The opt-out costs include the necessary field visit as well as the costs associated with maintaining two separate meter programs. In addition, the monthly fee covers the costs to manually read and bill your meter on a bi-monthly basis.
- Why is a field visit from a technician required for opt-out even though I already have an analog meter installed?
To get started on the opt-out program, a technician will visit your home to perform a basic check on the existing metering equipment and install color-coded tags to identify opt-out participation.
In some cases, the technician may exchange the meter if it’s been identified for an upgrade. In addition, a meter reader will visit your home on a monthly basis to read your meter for billing purposes.
- How long does the opt-out process take?
Once we receive your request to opt-out, we’ll process your request right away. We anticipate completing requests within a 1-2 week timeframe, depending on the volume of requests we receive. If you have special needs requiring an appointment, please contact us at 1-877-357-8525.
- Will I be required to sign anything?
Yes, if you mail in an application, you’ll be required to sign a form indicating your agreement to opt- out. If you sign up online, over the phone, or in person, your acceptance of the program terms is considered your authorization.
- Do I have to pay the opt-out initial fee all at once?
For your convenience, you may pay the initial fee over a three-month period. If the initial fee isn’t paid in full within the allotted timeframe, you’ll be removed from participating in the opt-out program and returned to smart meter service.
- What if I opt-out and later change my mind and want to have a smart meter; will I still be responsible to pay the fees?
Yes. If you opt-out, you’re responsible for the associated fees incurred. If you change your mind, the fees aren’t refundable. Please keep in mind that you can only opt-out one time per service address, per calendar year.
- Where can I learn more about the Smart Meter Opt-Out Program?
For more information, please visit us online at sdge.com/smartmeter or call 1-877-357-8525.