What is a Smart Meter?
Smart Meters are the next generation of meters, that communicate your energy usage to utilities, in live time. Allowing you to say goodbye to estimated bills once and for all. It also means you can see how much electricity or gas you are using in live time, so if you fill a full kettle up to make one cup of tea, you will be able to see that it is more efficient to only fill it with water that you need. Smart Meters are a great way of lowering your energy bills by just allowing you to see how much your appliances are actually costing you to use.
What is an Smart Meter IHD?
A smart meter IHD is what is known commonly as an In Home Display. This unit shows you in live time your energy usage. Showing how much you are spending on both electric and gas (dual fuel) and also allows you to show what is left on your credit, if you are a prepay smart meter customer.
How long do Smart Meter Installs Take?
Smart Meter installs on average take around 60-70 minutes, your smart meter engineer will also demonstrate your In Home Display (IHD).
How Do I Request a Smart Meter?
You can call your energy supplier and request a smart meter install. They will often take your details and inform you when they are installing smart meters in your area. Getting your name on that list is important, with 53 million smart meters to install, you do not want to miss out.
Do Smart Meters cost me?
No, smart meters are paid for by your energy supplier. They are obligated to offer every energy user in the UK a free smart meter by 2020. If you are asked to pay anything upfront over the phone, please do not agree and report the number to your local authority right away.
Will I still get estimated bills?
Smart Meters see the end to estimated bills, with consumers reportedly overpaying 50% on their energy bills annually, this is a great change to customers who cannot afford to continue paying out for rising energy bills each year.
Do People Want Smart Meters?
Yes, Smart Energy GB the current government campaign company recently undertook a survey of 10,000 people in the UK, who currently have smart meters and a staggering 81% of those using smart meters, said that they would recommend them to a friend or family member and that they had seen an improvement in their energy bills, now that they can track them through their smart meters. The IHD was a key point for consumers understanding their energy usage, as this communicates live energy usage via the handheld device.
Are Smart Meters Accurate?
Yes, all smart meters are manufactured to industry standards set by the UK NMO or National Measurement Office. This allows consumers to rest easy knowing that the energy usage showing on their smart meter and IHD is exactly what they are using.
What if I am a Prepaid customer?
This is fine, a smart meter can still be installed in your property, in fact a smart meter will actually make your topping up much easier, as you can do this via many applications available from utilities and can also be done via text message. If you prefer to top up in shop, then you will be pleased to know that by the time you get home, your credit will be showing on your smart meter.
Can I change supplier and keep my Smart Meter?
Yes, there is a lot of scare mongering around smart metering at the moment, and unfortunately it appears to come from not entirely true sources. It is true that if you switch supplier that it may not communicate effectively with your new supplier. However, there will be available remote add ons that the supplier can give, to make sure the smart meter communicates your energy usage correctly, in live time.
I’ve heard smart meters are dangerous?
Smart Meters have been tried and tested by Public Health England and proven to be safe to a users health. If you currently own a smartphone, then the signal emitted from that device, is no stronger than that in the smart meter you have had installed.
If my information is out there, is it safe?
Yes, your name, address, date of birth and bank details are never stored or communicated via your smart meter, only your energy usage is communicated to your energy supplier via the smart meter. So you can rest easy knowing that the secure information sent from your smart meter to your energy supplier, will only be your energy usage and nothing else.