As we write this, almost seven million smart energy meters have been fitted in Wales, England and Scotland. Approximately 53 million smart meters are expected to be installed in homes and businesses by the end of 2020. This roll-out is the biggest national infrastructure scheme in a generation and will help Britain become energy efficient while save consumers an estimated £5.24 billion over 18 years.
According to Government research, a lack of current and reliable information may have prevented consumers from reducing their energy use, carbon emissions, and their energy bills in the past and that’s why energy suppliers have been instructed to install smart meters.
Smart meters are designed to help establish a smart energy grid receiving data from millions of individual meters. This data will help plan energy supplies, reduce energy waste, and plot peaks and troughs in demand.
There are also huge consumer benefits.
Smart meters help householders and businesses manage their energy use better, cut their bills, and avoid estimated bills. Just imagine … in the future, smart meters might also be able to communicate with appliances such as washing machines and electric cars about the best £-value times to use or charge them. More information on plans for the smart energy grid can be found on www.smartenergygb.org
So, what are smart meters?
The systems come in two parts – the meter attached to your energy supply, and a portable home display screen which looks like a portable tablet.
They are connected to your supplier via a highly secure wireless network overseen by the energy regulator Ofgem. You don’t need an internet connection for them to work and there are strict rules governing the privacy and security of your smart data.
- Show you how much energy you’re using
- Give you information about how much it’s costing in pounds and pence, and in real time
- Send regular readings straight to your energy supplier – meaning there’s no more need to take your own or have estimated bills
- Make switching suppliers a simple and smooth process
- Give benefits to those on pre-payment or credit meters. You’ll be able to see your balance easily and avoid running out of credit.
Do you have to pay for a smart meter to be installed?
You won’t be charged for a smart meter or its installation. Your existing meters and their maintenance form part of the regular energy bills you pay. That will continue with a smart meter. It’s just a different piece of kit. Contact your current energy suppliers to book your installation at a time convenient for you.
What’s City Energy doing?
We’ve discovered that 90% of current smart meter installers are gas engineers who have taken a top-up course to install electric meters with very few domestic electricians being cross-trained for the smart meter role.
We don’t believe that’s good enough for our customers. Naturally gas meters are very different from electricity meters and during a Smart Meter installation, both get replaced. That’s why we’ve taken the decision to deliver our smart meter installations with fully-qualified smart meter installers with extensive expertise in gas as well as electric.
We’re putting quality of workmanship, safety of our customers and outstanding customer service at the forefront of our delivery programme.
Our smart meter installations are delivered in partnership with some of the biggest energy suppliers. We are going live September 2017.
If you are looking for further smart advice, have a look at the official Smart Energy GB website.