If you don’t have one now you soon will, that’s the message coming from Duke Energy. They are talking about smart meters.

So far more than 2-million North Carolina customers have received a smart meter including 350,000 meters installed in the greater Triad, “We think there are a lot of benefits to customers and it’s also efficient for the utility,” said Jeff Brooks of Duke Energy.

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As for the process, Duke Energy says customers should receive a postcard a few weeks prior to installation. Customers do not need to be home but do need to allow crews access if their property has a fence with a gate lock.

If a technician can’t access the old meter to switch it out arrangements will be made to schedule a time. 

It is important to know that if several attempts are made unsuccessfully Duke Energy could shut off your power.

Customers who would like to opt out of the new smart meter program can do so--but must pay a one time set-up fee of $150 and $11.75 a month.

Duke Energy tells us about 500 people have opted out so far.