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franktoronto

@bell.ca

[Internet] New "smart" water meter interfering with Be

The City of Toronto recently installed a "Smart Meter" (for monitoring and reporting water usage) in my basement, about 20 feet away from my Sagemcom modem, and since then, almost every day between about 11:30 am and 12:30 pm, I lose my Internet connection every few minutes. After extensive troubleshooting with Bell, including sending me a new modem and installing a new "drop" outside my home, finally I realized that the only change in my house is the installation of that smart meter. My guess is that it is programmed to transmit once a day during that time period, and the signal is messing up my modem or phone line.

When I suggested that to the Bell tech, they said it's likely that that's the problem. They're sending a tech out tomorrow to relocate my modem farther away from the water meter. I'll be interested in seeing if that solves the problem.

Has anyone else experienced this problem, or come to the same conclusion? My understanding is that the City is installing these in every home eventually, by law. If others are experiencing the same problem, I'd be very interested in hearing about it.

Thanks!



ChuckcZar

@teksavvy.com

Re: [Internet] New "smart" water meter interfering wit

Maybe someone needs to try a modified power supply and or expensive power bar with pure power filtering. I only test modems. Has anyone tried either of the two?



Paolo
Mr. Wireless

join:2004-05-29
canada
reply to franktoronto

i saw these new smart water meters, can anyone confirm what frequency they communicate on to the collectors?

if theyre anything like the hydro smart meters they should use channels higher than 11, but if its channel 11, try changing your wireless wifi channel to something lower than 11
--
Happiness is like peeing your pants... Everyone can see it, but only you can feel its Warmth!!



franktoronto

@bell.ca

Thanks, good thought. I believe this is the device: »www.aclaratech.com/AclaraRF/Page···MTU.aspx - I will keep in mind your suggestion to try a different channel.

Here's an update after today's Bell tech visit: he did a thorough check of the box down the street and the wiring in my neighbourhood, and found and fixed a bridge tap, transferred my line to a better F2. Since then I have had a solid Internet connection, even during the 11:30-12:30 time window that was problematic for the last 2 weeks.

So either my problem was NOT the smart water meter after all, or the smart meter doesn't phone home on Sundays and I'll see the problem again tomorrow.

I'll keep an eye on it and report back if the problem returns next week. The Bell tech today said it was possible but not likely that the smart meter would affect my wired connection. So he didn't move my Sagemcom modenm/router, but he did leave me his number in case the problem returns.

Have to say, every Bell tech that has shown up at my door has been very helpful and knowledgeable. It's a tricky problem, and in my old neighborhood, I'm sure all the old wiring is a bit of a nightmare for getting reliable high speed service.

Anyway, that's the latest. I may have been wrong about the smart meter ... but I'm still going to track it and will post again if I get any new info about it.


RickStep
Premium
join:2002-11-25
Hamilton, ON
kudos:1
reply to franktoronto

This is the same technology that is used with the Hydro (electricity) meters. There were some issues when they were first installed.

Most of the issues are due to bad grounds or poor connections either in the home or on the pole.

Smart water meters aren't going away. Call your Internet provider and complain. If Bell, TekSavvy (Bell again) and other phone line Internet providers (Bell again) cleaned up the crap in the street and homes; the problem very, very, very likely would not exist.

Rick



franktoronto

@bell.ca

Monday update: the problem came back today, like clockwork, Internet started cutting out at around 11:30, on and off for about an hour, as it has done for the past 2 weeks. I've left a message with the Bell tech ... will post again if we get any closer to solving the mystery.



Paolo
Mr. Wireless

join:2004-05-29
canada

when the internet cuts out, is it the wireless or does the wired connection to your bell 2-wire modem cut out as well?
--
Happiness is like peeing your pants... Everyone can see it, but only you can feel its Warmth!!



Paolo
Mr. Wireless

join:2004-05-29
canada

Woops, forgot u dont have the 2-wire gateway, noticed u have the Sagecom,. my mistake



franktoronto

@bell.ca

What's strange is that all of the lights on the modem go off except the top power light, so not only the Wireless light, but also the WAN light. I have no idea what's going on ... hopefully someone at Bell does.


RickStep
Premium
join:2002-11-25
Hamilton, ON
kudos:1

2 edits

said by franktoronto :

What's strange is that all of the lights on the modem go off except the top power light, so not only the Wireless light, but also the WAN light. I have no idea what's going on ... hopefully someone at Bell does.

REPEAT; Repeat;

Scream at the City of Toronto.

The problem may not be fixed anytime soon; however; it the same issue as the smart meters.

What you will have to do is WAIT.

This is Internet over power line and/or high power 2.4GHz to assure the information can be received.

Typical Internet over power line broadcasts within the confines of a house or at least the electricity customers on a specific transformer.

For this system to work; the devices connected (the electricity meter & now the water meter must broadcast outside the original very small range.) and must ALWAYS broadcast the electricity and water consumption usage.

A 5.8GHz router may be the best way to solve this problem.

Rick

W180

join:2011-03-08

said by RickStep:

said by franktoronto :

What's strange is that all of the lights on the modem go off except the top power light, so not only the Wireless light, but also the WAN light. I have no idea what's going on ... hopefully someone at Bell does.

REPEAT; Repeat;

Scream at the City of Toronto.

The problem may not be fixed anytime soon; however; it the same issue as the smart meters.

What you will have to do is WAIT.

This is Internet over power line and/or high power 2.4GHz to assure the information can be received.

Typical Internet over power line broadcasts within the confines of a house or at least the electricity customers on a specific transformer.

For this system to work; the devices connected (the electricity meter & now the water meter must broadcast outside the original very small range.) and must ALWAYS broadcast the electricity and water consumption usage.

A 5.8GHz router may be the best way to solve this problem.

Rick

The Sagemcom is an N router, uses the 5 Ghz frequency unless the devices in the house are not N compatible, then it has to use G technology at 2.4 Ghz. Changing the channel in the modem will help if that's an issue with the wireless. However the OP states that the WAN light goes off, in that modem that will mean No Sync. So there seems to be something else going on.


Llort

@rogers.com
reply to RickStep

said by RickStep:

said by franktoronto :

What's strange is that all of the lights on the modem go off except the top power light, so not only the Wireless light, but also the WAN light. I have no idea what's going on ... hopefully someone at Bell does.

REPEAT; Repeat;

A 5.8GHz router may be the best way to solve this problem.

Rick

How can a router solve the problem? The water meter may be broadcasting a signal at the time the modem goes out of service. This is an impulse noise that disturbs the dsl/vdsl signal. If this is the case then you would have to stop the impulse noise from affecting the modem. You may need shielding or have to move the wiring and modem further away from the meter or get power filtering for the modem.

RickStep
Premium
join:2002-11-25
Hamilton, ON
kudos:1

1 edit
reply to RickStep

I think some here are missing the issues.

1. The city of Toronto installed these water meters and the telecommunications act says that new devices must be approved and can't interfere with existing communication systems.
2. The WAN signal from Bell is wired, not wireless; but the electricity meters and the water meters are designed to always connect somewhere; not hit and miss. It is possible that the "transmitter"" level in the water meter is too high and is swamping the Sagemcom
3. Either Bell is at fault or Toronto is at fault.
4. This is a new issue. These problems also occurred when new electricity meters were installed in some locations.
5. Call Toronto and have them install a new meter or disable the remote part until the problem is identified and corrected. If Toronto won't, have your lawyer send them a letter.
6. There is a division of Industry Canada called Spectrum Management and Telecommunications that is responsible for the investigation of telecommunication interference here:

»www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/smt-gst.ns···802.html

The Toronto office is here:

Toronto District Office
Room 909
55 St. Clair Avenue East
Toronto ON M4T 1M2
Telephone: 416-973-8215
Fax: 416-954-3553
Email: spectrum.toronto@ic.gc.ca
Hours of operations: 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
(By appointment only)

Rick.


RickStep
Premium
join:2002-11-25
Hamilton, ON
kudos:1

The following information is from the City of Toronto.

RF output information:

Operating frequency of the water meter transmitter is an Industry Canada Licensed frequency of 450-470MHz
Unlike most electric smart meters, the water meter transmitter system does not form a communication mesh so the transmission time from the transmitter is extremely short, about 0.25 seconds, after that the transmitter turns off.
In a residential meter the transmitter will transmit 4 times a day
After the transmitter transmits for 0.25 seconds it turns off
When not transmitting data, the transmitter remains off
Total transmission time of less than 1 second - for the entire day
The transmitter output is 0.25W
The maximum allowable power density for a transmission is 0.311 mW/cm2 at 20 cm
The water meter transmitter power density is 0.000008 mW/cm2, at 20 cm, this is 38,000 times less than the maximum allowable limit
FCC ID: LLB6327P
IC ID: 4546A-6327P

The web site is here:

»torontowatermeterprogram.ca/abou···d-system

Rick



Paolo
Mr. Wireless

join:2004-05-29
canada

400 mhz is no where near the 2.4 your bell router uses, maybe the data collector is operating at a higher frequency taking u off line?
--
Happiness is like peeing your pants... Everyone can see it, but only you can feel its Warmth!!



Anonymous_
Anonymous
Premium
join:2004-06-21
127.0.0.1
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

said by Paolo:

400 mhz is no where near the 2.4 your bell router uses, maybe the data collector is operating at a higher frequency taking u off line?

meaning less I can use a 2.4GHz signal to take out your digital tv signal.

If I place a 2.4GHz device next to your OTA antenna it will degrade the signal from OTA and all you will get is a unwatchable picture .

This is why analog is a better format.


hm

@videotron.ca
reply to RickStep

There has been a couple of cases in Ottawa where "defective" meters have been installed and the power output (RF frequency or radiation or whatever) has been way off the scale and out of norms. This has caused a problem similar to what this guy states.

Problem is, not many people can afford to hire a specialist to come out and measure RF to verify it's within norm.

In one case, Ontario hydro kept refusing the experts readings and reports till the guy went to the media who also confirmed it.

This guy should be able to contact his power company to measure this and show him it's within norm. Who's to say this meter isn't defective?



tigerpaw509

join:2011-01-19
reply to franktoronto

Do you have dsl ?If so you need a filter on that meter.

If meter is wireless then moving it may do the job



franktoronto

@bell.ca

I'm the OP and wanted to post an update and a big thank you to everyone who posted your very helpful information and suggestions. Bell finally sent a "senior technician" to my home, the third one to try to fix my problem, and he seems to have finally fixed it, by changing some wiring off-site somewhere. His report says only "Changed port", and I'm afraid I'm not technical enough to remember what else he said, except that he followed the wiring back a ways, found some problems along the way, as well as some water somewhere, and made changes to it.

Bottom line is that since then (July 18), my problem has disappeared and my Internet connection has been solid, even during the 11:30am to 1:00pm time period that had been problematic for 2-3 weeks prior.

So it looks like my suspicions about the smart water meter, which were initially confirmed by one of the Bell techs I spoke to on the phone, were wrong. The senior tech said that it was not likely the problem, and the information that RickStep kindly found and posted above about the smart meter (that it only transmits for less than a second, 4 times a day, and then shuts off), would also confirm that my problem was not a result of the smart meter.

My apologies if I led the discussion on a wild goose chase; at the time, the smart meter seemed the most likely culprit when the phone tech kept asking me if any new devices had been added to my basement. It also would have explained the regular daily nature of my disconnects.

I still worry that the problem will return of course. If it does, I'll post again. Thank you again for giving your thoughts and ideas to this baffling problem.


morisato

join:2008-03-16
Oshawa, ON
Reviews:
·TekSavvy Cable
·TekSavvy DSL
·ELECTRONICBOX

Sounds like there was a problem on Your Line or in the Dslam( bell modem) and he changed u to a different Connection to resolve it glad its fixed sad it took 5 techs to do it.
--
Every time Someone leaves Sympatico an Angel gets its wings.



Paolo
Mr. Wireless

join:2004-05-29
canada
reply to Anonymous_

said by Anonymous_:

said by Paolo:

400 mhz is no where near the 2.4 your bell router uses, maybe the data collector is operating at a higher frequency taking u off line?

meaning less I can use a 2.4GHz signal to take out your digital tv signal.

If I place a 2.4GHz device next to your OTA antenna it will degrade the signal from OTA and all you will get is a unwatchable picture .

This is why analog is a better format.

digital tv ota only goes up to 699 mhz now, they auctioned off the 700-800 mhz band to the cellular companies.
--
Happiness is like peeing your pants... Everyone can see it, but only you can feel its Warmth!!