July 4, 2012 our electric meter got fried. The lights were flickering for about a week and I had called the electric company out 3 times to check it out before it got to that point. They said every time (two of which I was there and never saw them come by) that the meter was fine. I was p'ed off because our house could have burned down because of their negligence. Finally on July 4th I told the dispatcher that the meter had made a sizzling sound so she sent someone out right away. It happened to be a different guy than is regularly in charge of our area, so he actually pulled the meter and the breaker on the left side was fried. Literally. The wire to the breaker had the plastic covering flaking off. He taped it up and was able to find a replacement breaker to fix the problem. He then cleaned up the rest of the meter and replaced the globe. Problem solved...I thought :(
On Monday, I noticed that when I turned on the stove (electric) and the microwave on at the same time, the lights started flickering. I told DH that we needed to check the breaker box to be sure that everything was wired in correctly and not loose. The thought never crossed my mind that it could be the meter again. We dealt with it till Thursday night. The whole house electric was flickering and clicking off and on all night long. When I got up in the morning I went out to the meter and it was completely black inside the globe. FREAKED me out!!! The babies’ bedroom is right above where that dang meter...I called Westar again and told them to come out again. Our normal service person was here in about five minutes. He pulled the meter and it was the right side breaker that was completely fried and the wire there was all falling apart. He said that we needed to update our meter because they didn't even make parts for the one that was on our house. Why didn't the other guy tell me this? If I had known then that his fix was temporary I could have had an electrician update our service ASAP back in July 2012 (my future BIL is an electrician AND was here to wire FIL and MIL's new garage this summer...we could have gotten it done for the price of wire and conduit). So the guy tried to rig it up again but the parts he had wouldn't work...you know how much it costs to have an electrician come out and replace the "mast" and update the meter (Westar supplied the meter and box)? $425 SO annoyed. If the first guy had just let me know to replace it, I would have had to pay $50 tops...ugh. We had the cash to cover it, but that is not the point. The electric company has really disappointed me with their service. I had to make the problem sound dire for them even actually come out and then they didn't let me know my service was inadequate for the uses of a modern household.