Electrical – How to control a circuit breaker remotely


We have a house in the country that largely sits abandoned. We have a large family, and we like to go visit for the weekends. When we leave the house, we turn off the circuit breakers to prevent high electrical bills. But lately, some family members have decided to "live" at the house.
The problem: they do not take responsibility for the electrical bill. Legally we have no right to prevent the family members from staying at the house, but we want a way to limit electricity usage to those who have pay for the electricity.

What I would like is a way to have remote control of the circuit breakers. I would like to be able to have a "remote kill switch" for the electricity and the circuit breakers seem like the right place to do it. But another method to turn off the electricity, and ensure that it cannot be turned on, would work too.

Is there a way to install a "meter after the meter" or something like this?

What should we be asking our electrician to install and where?

Best Answer

Install a lock on the panel, or main shutoff. Then only give keys/combination, to those family members that pay their share. Check with your local government before installing the lock, as it may not be legal in some jurisdictions.

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Search for a circuit breaker lockout. A lockout is a device that easily attaches to a breaker, and prevents the breaker from being turned on. A combination or pad-lock can be installed, which will prevent unauthorized users from turning the breaker on.