Update to original blog post (10/15/18)
Since posting the original article below, another effective smart meter radiation cover has become available that is more cost effective than the one I originally mentioned below. Called a smart meter “cover,” it is available here. Although not as sturdy or adjustable as the this original “guard“, it seems to protect just as well. (See comparison photo here: guard on left and cover on right.)
I was working in the yard one day last December when I noticed that one of our electrical meters looked new. (We live in a converted duplex house so we have two meters.) When I called the electrical utility company to find out why we had a new meter, I learned that we now have a “smart meter”! Ugh!
Other states, like California and Florida, and other countries, like Canada and parts of Europe, have had electrical smart meters for several years, so I knew about them and knew enough to be concerned. They are now officially in Tennessee and slowly being installed throughout Nashville. Once I learned one was attached to my house, it was time to learn much more.
I urge you to read this post to the end. These smart meters are causing all sorts of health problems. I explain what happened to us and how we are now protecting ourselves.
What Is A Smart Meter?
If you look at the picture above, you should be able to tell if you have a smart meter on your home, office, or school. Older electrical meters use analog technology and they typically have a face with a rotating dial or a simple digital display like the meter on the right. The smart meter, as shown in the picture on the left, has a digital reader that is more advanced with changing displays and additional buttons.
Unlike older meters, smart meters use digital technology to record the electrical usage in your home. It allows the utility company to transmit this information wirelessly to their offices, thereby eliminating the need for a person to physically come out and read your meter. Think of it as a very large (wireless) Wi-Fi system attached to your house. Except that smart meters are worse than your typical in-house Wi-Fi system.
Like Wi-Fi systems (and cell phones), smart meters give off electromagnetic radiation (EMR or microwave radiation), yet smart meters are more detrimental because they give off intermittent pulses of radiation, in short bursts throughout the day. These pulses are also stronger because they have to travel longer distances, either to the utility company or an intermediary hub. Some can transmit to up 30 miles.
The radiation from the smart meter is multi-directional and can penetrate walls, which means that if you have a smart meter, these microwave pulses are entering your home and getting absorbed by your body. It also means that if you live close to your neighbor with a smart meter, you are probably being exposed to pulses from their device as well.
The worst part is that you have little control over these signals. The radiation from a cell phone is more localized and only emits radiation when in use. You can turn it off at any time. An in-home Wi-Fi system can also be turned off when not in use and especially at night while sleeping, thereby eliminating the radiation it puts off. However, smart meters are always on and constantly emitting signals at random.
Do We Keep the Smart Meter?
I had done enough research previously to know I did not want a smart meter on my house. In fact, when we moved into the house last year, I had called our electrical company. They told me at that time that smart meters were not slated for my area and that I would have a chance to opt out should they become available. Well, that was not quite true. I was not notified before the smart meter was installed. There was no notice in my bill. There was no knock on my door. The meter was just replaced and I just happened to notice it two weeks later.
The electrical company explained that I could “opt out” but now that the meter was already in place, I would have to pay $141 to have it changed back to the analog meter. I would also have to pay an additional $32 per month to have someone come to my house and physically read the analog meter. And, because I have two meters on my house, I would have to pay this monthly fee twice. (They also informed me that an updated smart meter would be coming out in the future; at that point I would not have the option to opt out.)
What Were Our Options?
We had already purposely gone through the expense (and hassle) of wiring our house for computers and TV so that we would not be exposed 24/7 to Wi-Fi routers, another dangerous form of EMR. We are also one of the few families that still has a land line so that we can limit the use of cell phones when at home.
It was time to delve back into my research on smart meters and decide on the best option for my family. Essentially, there are three main ways to protect yourself from a smart meter:
- Opt Out – Opt out of the smart meter altogether and pay the monthly fee so you can keep your analog meter.
- Protect – Use various means to protect your body from the detrimental effects of the microwave radiation.
- Neutralize – Stop the microwave signals at the source, at the smart meter itself.
Opting out is definitely a possibility, depending on your budget. If you are extremely sensitive to EMR, this may be the best solution. It would also be something to strongly consider if the smart meter is attached to a bedroom wall, where you know you will spend large amounts of time. Long term, we decided opting out was not the right solution for us. (Other states have opt-out fees as low as $10 per month, which is much more realistic.)
The second option, protection, gets a little tricky and includes multiple solutions. The most evasive is using construction materials to reflect and absorb the microwave signals, by installing a large metal plate on the wall behind the smart meter along with other absorbing materials. This gets tricky depending on the location of the smart meter, the shape of your interior room, location of windows, and other interior elements. There is also the potential to magnify the signals in another direction if it is not done correctly.
Other methods of protection include:
- EMF shields that can be worn on your body and/or installed on the meter itself
- Diffusing yourself and your house with certain essential oils to counteract the effects of the radiation (rosemary is especially known to be helpful)
- Taking a homeopathic remedy specific to radiation to help detox its effects
- Using Epson salt baths and foot baths to remove radiation from the body
My family and I personally tried many of these protection options over the course of several months. We attached a smart meter shield to the meter to help counter act the effects of the radiation (rather than lessen the radiation), but we could detect no improvement. We also tried a protection device that wrapped the outside of the smart meter but this made very little change to the radiation reading. At the same time I was diffusing and wearing the essential oil of rosemary, using a homeopathic, and taking Epson salt and foot baths. I could tell the baths helped me on a physical level, but these were time consuming and not something I could maintain several times a week indefinitely.
So, that led us to neutralizing the smart meter, the third and most effective way to limit the EMR, short of removing the smart meter. During the course of my research, I came across a company that claimed their device would remove 98% to 99% percent of the emitting radiation. More on that in a minute.
Common Symptoms of EMR (and Smart Meter) Exposure
Electromagnetic radiation (EMR) is one of those tricky toxins. Because we cannot see, hear or smell EMR, we tend to forget about it. However, their effects can be devastating to some, especially to those people with other ailments like mold toxicity, heavy metal toxicity, Lyme Disease, etc.
EMR is known to effect the nervous system. Common symptoms include headaches, fatigue, poor sleep, irritability, depression, malaise, anxiety, chemical sensitivities, allergies, food sensitivities, brain fog, memory recall difficulties, tinnitus (ringing in ears), unexplainable pain, among other things. Long-term exposure can potentially contribute to more severe symptoms and diseases. For instance, EMR is linked to high blood pressure and DNA breakage.
Common exposure to EMR (and EMFs) also depletes your body of nutrients, especially minerals.
The Symptoms We Developed in Our Home
Over the years, I have learned that I am sensitive to electricity and microwave (Wi-Fi) signals. It is possible that my bout with heavy metal toxicity (and later Lyme disease) when I was in my thirties had something to do with it. (See my story here.) However, it could also be that my nervous system is more sensitive in general. Even as a child, I could easily tap into other people’s emotions. As an adult, working with others on an energetic level seems natural to me.
Our first experience with the effects of EMFs was about 15 years ago in a previous house with very old electrical wiring running under the floors. We were also sleeping in a bedroom next to the electrical meter. Once we figured out the issue and changed our bedroom to a different part of the house, certain health issues and sleep issues resolved themselves. That is how I found out I was electrically sensitive.
When wireless technology like cordless phones and wireless routers became available, we avoided them, opting to wire our electronic devices instead. We also never owned a microwave oven because I can feel it if one is turned on and I am in the same room (not to mention that microwaved food is not good for you).
During the time it took to learn that we had a smart meter attached to our house and the time it took to figure out a solution, a number of health problems crept back into our lives. For my husband, sleep became a big problem again. For my 9 year old son, he felt aches and pains in his joints (and bones) for the first time ever. He also did not seem to hold his chiropractic adjustments.
As for me, I did not feel well at all: I felt like I had many of my old Lyme-related symptoms, including a flare up of Candida albicans. I was getting headaches again and other unexplainable aches and pains and having sleep problems, which included waking up at 5:00 most mornings and not being able to go back to sleep. In the spring, I also had airborne-related allergies for the first time ever. Most disturbing, at least to me, was that I was gaining weight unexplainably for the first time in my life. (Until then, it had always been easy for me to keep my weight in check.)
What We Figured Out
Since I wanted to maximize our protection from the smart meter, I decided to purchase an acoustimeter to be able to detect the EMR as we tried different solutions. I had previously purchased a gauss meter that can detect electrical pulses. Now, with the acoustimeter, I could detect the microwave radiation coming from wireless devices like cell phones and smart meters.
To get a base line, I used the acoustimeter on multiple types of wireless devices. Here is what I found:
- Smart Meter: When measuring the smart meter, I got very high readings. These readings were sporadic, meaning I would get spikes of high readings at various intervals. For example, spikes would occur over and over during a 10 minute interval and then slow down for a while and then pickup again after 20 minutes or so. These reading were taken throughout the house. They lessened some when I got to the other side of the house (about 30 feet) but they were still on the higher level.
- Internet Router: Our router is wired to our electronic devices. However, it does have a switch to turn on the wireless function. When the Wi-Fi was off, the acoustimeter did not pickup any activity. As soon as I turned on the Wi-Fi switch, the acoustimeter reading spiked and remained high. It was very high at the router but dissipated the more I moved away from it.
- Cell Phone: When measuring my android cell phone, I got extremely high readings when I used it to make a call or answer a call. When not in use, but still turned on, there were still high readings when near the cell phone. The acousitmeter readings only dissipated when I turned on the “airplane mode” feature (or turned the phone off).
There are three distinctive issues that makes the smart meter potentially more dangerous than other wireless devices: (1) the signals are intermittent (short bursts) rather than constant which causes confusion to the cells in your body, (2) the signals are stronger because they transmit longer distances, and (3) you are not able to turn them off.
Our Final Decision
Using the acoustimeter to monitor our results, we tried several different protection and neutralizing options. Some worked better than others. Ultimately, for our house, we ended up using a “smart meter guard” as shown here. Not only did it drastically reduce the microwave radiation, it was also less expensive than having to pay the electrical company to put back our analog meter (with no monthly opt out fees).
As you can see in the adjacent picture, it fits nicely over the smart meter, covering all the glass and attaching to the metal ring on the back. If you go to their website and watch the video demonstration, you can see the difference before and after installing the guard. The readings I took with my acoustimeter before and after were very similar to what they show in their video. (I also attached a “do not install” sign to our remaining analog meter.)
While testing our house, I enlisted my friend Gary who regularly checks other people’s houses for electromagnetic issues. He confirmed my acoustimeter readings on our smart meter before and after installing the guard. The final proof for me was that I slept through the night for the first time in months. My headaches were gone the next day too!
Be sure to check your neighbor’s houses, since their smart meter can penetrate your house as well. In the process of checking his own home, Gary found that his neighbor’s smart meter was causing him more problems than his own, especially since the neighbor’s smart meter was adjacent to his bedroom wall. (The smart meter on his own house was further from his bedroom.)
If you live in an apartment building or condo, you may have fewer options. You should find out where the utility meters are located and be sure to at least locate your bed as far as possible from these meters. There is also another protection option called an EMF Faraday bed canopy (like this one) that can be put around your bed for additional protection. It may not be optimal, but at least you are limiting your exposure while sleeping, when your body’s cells are regenerating and detoxifying.
The Future With Smart Meters
The future of smart meters and the danger of the microwave radiation exposure to our bodies does not look good. Other utility companies, such as gas and water, also plan to install smart meters on your home, if they have not already done so. Appliance companies are starting to add more Wi-Fi technology to their products as well. Some refrigerators can already be monitored from your cell phone. In the future, all appliances are supposed to include devices that smart meters can monitor for usage, which in turn will create additional Wi-Fi signals in your home.
Some believe that smart meters have already affected the insect population, like bees and butterflies. What about our children, whose smaller bodies are more susceptible? What about our pets? There have been very few non-biased studies to date and very few showing long term effects, and none that I know of showing the effects of multiple Wi-Fi systems interacting at one time.
If you ask utility company personnel, they do not believe that smart meters are dangerous. Maybe one Wi-Fi system is not that detrimental to most people, but we are living in what is becoming a Wi-Fi “soup” that consists of cell towers, dish networks, wireless security systems, wireless computer networks, utility smart meters, etc. How much can our physical bodies handle?
What Will You Do?
I urge you to take a close look at your home and see where you can make improvements. Limit as much of the wireless technology as possible. For additional information on how to create a safe zone in your home, go my previous article on EMFs here. Protecting yourself from a smart meter is a huge step.
Few people give any thought to EMFs and EMR. We are bombarded by both on a daily basis and over time we get used to it. Or, we think we do. We don’t notice small health issues that start to creep up. Small health problems that, when combined with other life stressors, can cause more serious health issues over time.
You may not be as EMF sensitive as I am, but I suggest you try the following experiment: Turn off all the wireless devices and systems in your home for a few hours and then turn everything back on. Or, try turning on one system at a time, like your wireless router or speaker system. Many people can feel the difference, especially in their head or neck, after they have taken a break from the fields.
If you want to delve deeper into the health effects of smart meters, check out some of the short videos on this link. (The video showing the effects on live blood cells is especially enlightening.) To learn more about how to legally refuse a smart meter on your home, check out this action guide. (This website also includes a documentary titled Take Back Your Power.)
NOTE: I have no affiliations with Smart Meter Guard or Smart Meter Cover. I am recommending them because their guards works for us. I have tested them myself and can see and feel the difference in my health and the health of my family after installing one.