What are Submeters?

What are Submeters?

The behind-the-scenes hardware that best helps you gain better visibility into your facility’s energy and power? Submeters.

By: Allan Evora

When it comes to energy and power, you can’t manage what you don’t measure. That’s where submeters come into play.

These devices installed within a facility can collect interval and consumption data to shed light on when and how much power and energy are used. Over time, that data is used to trend and analyze different aspects of your facility or process within a SCADA, EPMS, or building automation system.


What do submeters help facilities do?

Different facilities have different reasons to integrate submeters. We recommend sitting down with a system integrator to understand your goals and rate structures. This is extremely important when choosing a submeter.

Our engineers use submeters to help facilities do a myriad of things, including:

  • Get a better picture of energy expenses by tracking consumption and demand by system, department, process, or product.
  • Locate and troubleshoot power quality issues damaging electronic equipment or causing light flickering.
  • Automate monthly healthcare generator and automatic transfer switch testing.
  • Reduce peak demand charges by measuring and analyzing energy use.
  • Allocate energy costs to building tenants or departments.
  • Qualify for energy efficient building programs which require energy tracking and benchmarking.
  • Independently verify an electric utility bill.
  • Conduct load profiling during emergency power situations to manage load creep.


Different submeters

Not only are there hundreds of uses for submeters, each submeter has differing form factors, features, and integration protocols. Learn more about what meters to specify, and some common installation concerns when installing a submeter.

In brief, some basic submeter differences include:

  • Form factor (footprint)
  • Cost
  • Inclusion of high-end power quality data
  • Connectivity
  • Mounting
  • Number of loads
  • Local display vs no display

The excessive differences between submeters is just one reason it’s imperative to trust a controls systems integrator like Affinity Energy to help you correctly specify a submeter that fits your unique environment and energy goals.


Contact us today for a no-obligation consultation.


Allan Evora - Founder | Affinity EnergyAllan D. Evora is a leading expert in control systems integration and president of Affinity Energy with over 20 years of industry experience working in every capacity of the power automation project life cycle. With a background at Boeing Company and General Electric, Allan made the decision to establish Affinity Energy in 2002. Allan is an alumnus of Syracuse University with a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering, graduate of the NC State Energy Management program, and qualified as a Certified Measurement & Verification Professional (CMVP).

Throughout his career, Allan has demonstrated his passion for providing solutions. In 1990, he developed FIRST (Fast InfraRed Signature Technique), a preliminary design software tool used to rapidly assess rotary craft infrared signatures. In 2008, Allan was the driving force behind the development of Affinity Energy's Utilitrend; a commercially available, cloud-based utility resource trending, tracking, and reporting software.

Allan has been instrumental on large scale integration projects for utilities, universities, airports, financial institutions, medical campus utility plants, and manufacturing corporations, and has worked with SCADA systems since the early ‘90s. A passion for data acquisition, specialty networks, and custom software drives him to incorporate openness, simplicity, and integrity into every design in which he is involved.