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How to Switch Off the Electric Meter

Updated July 20, 2017

In the case of certain emergencies, like severe storms or downed power lines, it may become necessary for you to turn off the power to your house directly at the electric meter. However, extreme caution should taken if this becomes necessary. In some states, it is even illegal to tamper with your outdoor electric meter. It is therefore strongly advised that you be familiar with the laws in your state regarding your electric meter. You should also make all attempts possible to contact your electric provider before shutting off your meter if time and your emergency allow.

Put on rubber boots and gloves.

Locate your circuit breaker and shut off the main power breaker.

Walk around to the side of your home where your electric meter is located and remove the locking tab that hangs from the bottom of the outer panel. You may have to use wire snippers to clip the thin metal strip that keeps the locked tab in place.

Lift your electric meter's front panel up.

Place your gloved hand on the glass part of your meter and twist it counterclockwise to remove it.

Flip the main switch to the off position.

Warning

Shutting off your own electric meter is extremely hazardous and is even illegal in some states. All attempts should be made to contact your electric company, to have them turn off the power at the meter, before attempting to do it on your own.

Things You'll Need

  • Rubber gloves
  • Rubber boots
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About the Author

Ashton Daigle, a New Orleans native, graduated from Southeastern Louisiana University in 1998 and went straight to work as a journalist. In 2005 he tackled the biggest news story of his life - Hurricane Katrina. Daigle is writing a collection of essays: What It Means to be a Saints Fan.