Page last updated at 01 February 2017 at 17:33
Electricity monitors have been around for a few years. They show homeowners how they use electricity and encourage them to change their habits and often cut up to 15% off their bill.
Smart meters are the next generation and are part of the Government’s plan for upgrading the UK’s energy system. They offer a range of intelligent functions to help households manage their gas and electricity bills.
- They come with an In-Home Display, similar to electricity monitors, showing consumers the energy they are using and how much it costs, both current and historical. But will also show your gas usage and for pre-payment consumers your credit left too.
- They will communicate with your supplier so no need for anyone to enter your home to read the meter and an end to estimated bills.
- It will enable changing tariffs and switching suppliers much easier and quicker allowing consumers to switch to tariffs that suit them.
The roll out has started and the energy suppliers are required to install smart electricity and gas meters in domestic and smaller non-domestic properties by 2020. There is no upfront cost. Consumers currently pay for their meter and its maintenance through their energy bills and this will be the same for a smart meter.
If you have gas and electricity from the same supplier they will most likely change both meters at same time. But different suppliers will require two visits.
The data recorded from the smart meters is valuable to the energy companies for managing the power network but also to some commercial organisations for example those wishing to advise on the best tariff or supplier, based on your accurate usage. But you can opt out of your data being shared and will be asked about it during the upgrade process.
For more information go to the Smart Energy website
To find out more, contact Giles Gooding on 023 8068 8274, email firstname.lastname@example.org, Twitter @EcoEastleigh