Dakota Electric Association is in the process of upgrading meters to provide even better service to the members of the electric cooperative.
Anixter, who is under contract with Dakota Electric, is doing the meter exchanges and has been working primarily in Farmington, Lakeville, Burnsville and Apple Valley. They will also begin meter change outs in Eagan and Rosemount in 2021. Vehicles are identified by the Anixter logo as well as a Dakota Electric logo. All meter technicians also have work vests with a Dakota Electric logo prominently displayed on the back and will work Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday.
Postcards are being mailed a few weeks in advance to the premise before the meter is changed out. The technician will knock on the door to notify the homeowner that the meter will be changed out, but all work is done outside the home. There is no need for the technician to enter the home. In some cases, there will be a short outage while the meter is changed out, but the meter exchange should only take a few minutes. All technicians will follow COVID-safe practices while notifying the homeowner of their presence on the property. Also, this winter, technicians will be doing many apartment meters in Dakota Electric’s service territory. Larger apartment complexes have the meters located inside an electrical room, which will allow the technicians to work indoors.
Besides meter change outs, those who are on Dakota Electric’s load management (off-peak) programs will have their load control receivers (LCRs) replaced. Powerhouse Electric and Dale Franke Electric are the contractors doing the LCR change outs on behalf of Dakota Electric. They are currently working in the Lakeville and Farmington areas.
The new meters will provide many benefits, including replacing aging infrastructure, increasing system efficiencies, improving outage notification and restoration and providing more energy information for members.
The advanced meter project will continue through 2021, and members will be notified by postcard before their meter is exchanged. LCR exchanges will continue through 2023, also with members receiving notification by postcard before the replacement occurs.
A customer-owned, non-profit utility since 1937, Dakota Electric Association provides electricity to more than 110,000 members throughout Dakota County and portions of Goodhue, Rice and Scott counties. Dakota Electric, a Touchstone Energy cooperative, serves its member-owners with integrity, accountability, innovation and commitment to community.