What can the Linky meter really do in your home?

By sending a simple signal, called “whistle”a service technician can diagnose an electrical fault in a few minutes over the phone. pixarno / stock.adobe.com

APPROACH- The connected box, which is often controversial, is already installed in 90% of French homes connected to the Enedis network.

It could be thought that the revolution of connected electricity meters has been left behind. Since the first experiments in 2010, almost 90% of households subscribed to the network have been equipped with a Linky meter, that is, 34.5 million houses and apartments across the country. However, the little green box continues to fuel the fantasy and periodically arouses controversy. The latest: the modification of the control of electric water heaters for certain homes. The counter, which has drawn all the criticism, plays a rather marginal role in the device.

In reality, Linky’s use is highly supervised. epithets”intelligent” Where “connected» as it is often called means that it is capable of accurately counting the total consumption of the home. The director of customer service at Enedis, Éric Salomon, insists on the global nature of the measures taken by the accountant. “Linky is unable to know the differentiated consumption of each device or each room. Impossible to know, for example, if you watch a lot of television or how often you turn on your oven.he explains.

SEE ALSO – Linky: “Enedis doesn’t cut the electricity and doesn’t cut the hot water”, assures the manager

encrypted data

The readings, however accurate, are quantitative and not qualitative. This technological capacity has allowed electricity providers to establish billing based on the actual consumption of households, and not on estimates, as was the case before the Linky era.

Specifically, each month, the Linky meter communicates the household consumption in KWh to the Enedis IT department. These data are fully encrypted, according to the framework established by the National Commission for Informatics and Liberties (CNIL). “Therefore, we can guarantee that our customers’ data will not be hacked”says Eric Solomon. Returning to the Enedis IT department, the data circulates through the cables of the electrical network and not over the Internet, an additional guarantee of its conservation. Once received by Enedis, the data is communicated to the providers to initiate billing.

By default, the installation only allows this monthly communication of the home’s electricity consumption in KWh. “But there is a second more detailed scheme, specifies the Enedis framework. The customer can request that his Linky meter not measure every month, but every week, every day and even every half hour. The double consent of the customer to Enedis and to his electricity supplier is fundamental, insists Éric Salomon. And if the client does not give his consent, Enedis does not have access to these consumption statements to the nearest half hour. “The data remains in the meter, it is the property of the client”assures the director of clientele.

Two advantages of this option, according to Enedis. Firstly, real-time monitoring of your consumption facilitates the adoption of eco-gestures and energy savings; then, it allows providers to offer contracts that are more appropriate to the actual consumption of their customers. “Thanks to Linky, the electricity supplier price list now contains about ten indices. The offers, more elaborated, are adapted to the different clients»Say hello to Nicolas Goldberg, Engineer and Energy Consultant at Colombus Consulting.

remote maintenance

The Linky meter makes remote maintenance possible. By sending a simple signal, called “whistle”, the service technician can diagnose the fault in a few minutes over the phone. There is no need to rush the technician to the site, saving a considerable amount of time and money for the user.

The Linky meter also facilitates self-consumption. Its technology makes it possible to measure both the energy requested from the network, like any electricity meter, and that which is redistributed in the network. This is what specialists call bidirectionality. A house with solar panels generates electricity. In summer, the electricity produced can exceed that consumed; this surplus is then dumped into the network. A few years ago, self-consumption houses had to install two electromechanical meters. Today, a single Linky meter is enough. “The Linky meter supports the energy transition by facilitating new uses”defends Eric Salomon.

According to Nicolas Goldberg, Linky meters have “healed Enedis’s blindness in the network of individuals”. Technology embedded within these green boxes can detect a small electrical signal change in the network. Users do not realize it, since the disturbances are very small, but this data allows Enedis to guarantee better maintenance of its network. “Before, network maintenance was done a bit blindly, depending on the age of the facilities”says the energy specialist. Significant savings have been achieved, called “beautiful” Nicolas Goldberg, who recalls that Enedis is a subsidiary of EDF, a public company.

Seven years after the launch campaign, the Linky meter still has a bad reputation. Due to the resistance of septic systems, 3.8 million Linky meters remain to be installed in France.

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