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HOW CAN I READ A SMART METER?

With a smart meter, manual readings will become a thing of the past. Your meter will send your meter readings directly to your supplier, so you don’t have to. But if you do want to take a reading, your smart meter and accompanying in-home display will give you a few ways to do this.

This guide will help people who have a smart meter installed.

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Why would you take a manual smart meter reading?

With a smart meter, your meter readings will be sent automatically to your energy supplier. This means you’ll no longer need to take a meter reading. And you can expect accurate, not estimated bills.

But you may wish to take a meter reading to help you stay in control of your energy use. You can use these readings to compare your energy use across various timeframes. These can also help you set yourself budgets.

And if you change the settings on your smart meter so they no longer send your meter readings to your energy supplier automatically, you’ll have to take your meter readings manually.

Or you may need to take a meter reading if you have switched supplier and have a SMETS1 meter. These smart meters can temporarily lose some of their functionality following a switch. This means you may have to read the meters yourself for a little while.

How to take a meter reading if you have a smart meter

There are 2 ways to take a meter reading with a smart meter and the accompanying in-home display –

  • Using your smart electricity and/or gas meter
  • Using your portable in-home display (IHD)

Are you looking at the in-home display or the smart meter?

The smart meter will usually be installed in the same place as your traditional meter. It sends your energy reading securely to your energy supplier. So you can expect accurate, not estimated bills.

When you have a smart meter installed, you can choose to accept an in-home display in your home.

The in-home display is a portable, handheld device which can be placed near your meter. So no more climbing into the basement for a meter reading. This displays your energy consumption information.

How to use your smart meter to take a meter reading

You can find your gas meter readings on your smart gas meter. The meter reading will normally be shown as a number followed by ‘m3’. You may need to speak to your energy supplier if it is difficult to find your meter reading. They will provide advice tailored to your type of in-home display.

For your electricity meter readings, you’ll have to look for your smart electricity meter. Electricity readings are presented in kilowatt hours (kWh).

Energy suppliers provide different smart meters, which means yours may look different to your friends’ or neighbours’. For specific advice on using your smart meter to take a meter reading, contact your energy supplier.

How to use your in-home display to take a meter reading

Your meter readings will be displayed on your in-home display.

Depending on your energy supplier, your in-home display may be different to your neighbours’. Different in-home displays could provide extra information. But they all show the same basic information on your electricity and/or gas usage, including your energy use in pounds, pence and kilowatt hours (kWh).

You should take your meter reading using kilowatt hours (kWh), and send these to your energy supplier. From there, your supplier will provide your final cost.

Your supplier will be able to help you use your smart meter if you’re having difficulties. Simply type your energy supplier into the box below and we'll connect you.

We believe that Octopus Energy is now responsible for Affect Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Octopus Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for Angelic Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that SSE is now responsible for Atlantic Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with SSE who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that Nabuh Energy is now responsible for Avid Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Nabuh Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for Beam Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that PFP Energy is now responsible for Better Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with PFP Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for Breeze customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that SSE is now responsible for Brilliant Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with SSE who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that Together Energy is now responsible for Bristol Energy customers. Therefore we will connect you with Together Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that SSE are responsible for Cardiff Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with SSE who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for CitizEn Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that Octopus Energy is now responsible for Co-op Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Octopus Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that Scottish Power is now responsible for Daisy Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Scottish Power who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that OVO Energy are responsible for Economy Energy credit customers. Therefore we are connecting you with OVO Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward. If you are a prepay customer you will need to contact Boost, who will be responsible for taking you request forward.

We believe that Octopus Energy is now responsible for Engie customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Octopus Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that Utilita is now responsible for Eversmart customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Utilita who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

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We believe that Shell Energy Retail is now responsible for First Utility customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Shell Energy Retail who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for Fosse Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that Green Star Energy is now responsible for Future Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Green Star Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that Octopus Energy is now responsible for Gen4U customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Octopus Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that Bulb Energy is now responsible for GnErgy customers. Therefore we will connect you with Bulb who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for Great North Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that EDF Energy is now responsible for Green Network Energy customers. Therefore we will connect you with EDF Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that Octopus Energy is now responsible for Iresa customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Octopus Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that EDF Energy is now responsible for iSupply Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with EDF Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that OVO Energy is now responsible for Lumo customers. Therefore we are connecting you with OVO Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that E.ON is now responsible for Npower Select customers. Therefore we will connect you with E.ON who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that Together Energy is now responsible for One Select Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Together Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that Utilita is now responsible for Our Power customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Utilita who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for PFP Energy customers. Therefore we will connect you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that Octopus Energy is now responsible for Qwest Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Octopus Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for Ram Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for Robin Hood Energy customers. Therefore we will connect you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

Scottish Gas have told us that British Gas is responsible for providing smart meters on their behalf. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

Scottish Hydro have told us that SSE is responsible for providing smart meters on their behalf. Therefore we are connecting you with SSE who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for Simplicity Energy customers. Therefore we will connect you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that SSE is now responsible for Spark Energy customers. Therefore we will connect you with SSE who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for Southend Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that Nabuh Energy is now responsible for Snowdrop Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Nabuh Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We don't currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that EDF are responsible for Solarplicity customers. Therefore we are connecting you with EDF who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

Swalec have told us that SSE is responsible for providing smart meters on their behalf. Therefore we are connecting you with SSE who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don’t currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for The Leccy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don’t currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that Scottish Power is now responsible for Tonik Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Scottish Power who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that EDF Energy are responsible for Toto Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with EDF Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that Shell Energy Retail is now responsible for Usio Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with Shell Energy Retail who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that EDF Energy is now responsible for Utility Point customers. Therefore we will connect you with EDF Energy who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that E.ON are responsible for Wasp Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with E.ON who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for White Rose Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that E.ON are responsible for Wigan Warriors Energy customers. Therefore we are connecting you with E.ON who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don’t currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters online, but we can connect you to them over the phone by calling 0300 131 8000.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for Your Energy Sussex customers. Therefore we are connecting you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We don’t currently have information from your energy supplier regarding their bookings for smart meters, but we will connect you to their website so you can contact them directly.

We believe that E.ON Next is now responsible for Hub Energy customers. Therefore we will connect you with E.ON Next who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

We believe that British Gas is now responsible for MoneyPlus Energy customers. Therefore we will connect you with British Gas who will be responsible for taking your request forward.

What else will your in-home display show you?

If you have an smart meter in credit mode, it could display the following depending on the in-home display type provided by your energy supplier -

  • The time
  • Battery charge status
  • Signal strength
  • Your electricity and/or gas consumption in kilowatt hours (kWh), and pounds and pence
  • Your daily, weekly or monthly electricity and/or gas consumption
  • Your historic energy consumption up to a rolling 13 month cycle
  • Energy usage light indicators, which could include usage being visualised as low (green), medium (amber), or high (red), but will depend on the type of in-home display you have
  • Your tariff price

If you’re a prepay customer, your in-home display could also display the following depending on the IHD type provided by your energy supplier -

  • Your smart meter credit balance
  • Low credit alert
  • Emergency credit balance if this is activated
  • Any debt

Your in-home display will also show you whether the meter is operating in prepay or credit mode.

How can the in-home display help you reduce your energy usage?

Your in-home display provides your energy usage data. You can use this to help you make more informed decisions about your energy use in your home. This energy usage data lets you -

Infographic showing what benefits the IHD will provide

  1. See exactly how much energy you use in pounds and pence

    You check your near-real data for your electricity and/or gas usage in pounds and pence, and kilowatt hours (kWh). You can view your gas and electricity usage separately, or combined in kWh.

  2. See at a glance, whether your electricity use is high, medium or low, and how much it’s costing

    In-home displays vary depending on your energy supplier. But your energy usage data could be shown as a traffic light, figures, or in another easy-to-read way.

  3. Control various settings, which allow you to view your energy usage by the hour, per week or per month.

    All in-home displays allow you to see what you've spent over time, so you can track when spending is higher than usual.

    It can also show historic consumption daily, weekly, monthly, or on a 13-month rolling cycle.

    Some smart meters show your energy usage information in a graph, showing usage over time, so you can see the peaks and troughs of use.

How can the in-home display help prepay customers reduce their energy usage?

If you’re on prepay and have a smart meter, your in-home display will provide information to help you reduce your energy usage. Which could help you reduce your energy costs -

  1. You can view your energy consumption and remaining credit

    The in-home display in prepay mode tells you your balance in pounds and pence, so you can see your energy consumption at a glance.

    You can use this information to work out which appliances, such as your kettle, are using the most energy. And if you can, adjust accordingly.

  2. You can see when your credit is low

    In-home displays will also give out a low credit alert if you’ve fallen below a low threshold. From there, you can enter your emergency credit.

    This gives you more visibility over your credit, and can help you plan.

Mother and child baking in the kitchen

How can I get a smart meter if I don’t have one?

Many homes in Britain can upgrade to a smart meter right now. But where you live, the type of home you live in and the age and type of your existing meter may mean that your energy supplier will take a little longer to install yours.

Your supplier will be in touch when your smart meter is ready to be installed. If you would like to enquire about getting one now, please contact your energy supplier here.

FAQs

Can I get a smart meter for free?

There is no additional cost for installation of your smart meter. At the point of installation you may be offered an in-home display that shows your spending in near-real time for no additional cost. You won’t have an extra charge on your bill because you choose to have a smart meter. The costs will be spread across everyone’s bills, just like the cost of running and maintaining today’s traditional meters are.

Do I need one smart meter for gas and another for electricity?

Yes, if you're a dual-fuel customer, both meters will need to be replaced. Your supplier will aim to install both meters on the same visit to make things as easy as possible. You will only need one in-home display to view both your gas and electricity usage. If your gas and electricity accounts are with different suppliers, you will have two separate smart meter installations - one from each of your suppliers.