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How to Read Your Electric Meter

Zeeland Board of Public Works uses two different types of electric meters. The newer style is digital, the older is analog.

To read the digital, the display will flash either four or five digits. This is your reading. The difference between this reading and the previous reading on your bill is the number of kilowatt-hours you have used.

To read the analog, it’s no mystery!  Your electric meter can easily be read if you understand some basic rules.  Each of the five dials represents one digit of the present reading. The dials move both clockwise and counter clockwise. When the hand of one of the dials is between numbers, always take the smaller number.


If you cannot tell if a hand is past a number or not, simply look at the dial to the right. If it has passed zero, then the hand is pointing to the correct number. If the dial to the right has not passed zero, then use the next smaller number. To practice, go outside to your home or business and record the readings for several days in a row. By subtracting yesterday’s reading from today’s reading, you can get a feel for how much energy (kilowatt hours) you use each day.