How do I know if I already have a smart meter?
You may already have a gadget at home that helps control your energy use. The easiest way to tell if it’s a smart meter is if you no longer have to give meter readings, or get estimated bills.
The table below shows two main types of devices out there that can sometimes be confused with a smart meter – smart thermostats and energy monitors.
Smart thermostats, such as Hive and Nest, connect to your wifi so you can control your heating and hot water through your smart phone, tablet or desktop.
These can be expensive and have an added installation cost. Having one means you are only tracking your heating so you can't keep an eye on your electricity and gas usage.
These include brands such as Smappee and Owl, which allow you to see your electricity use in near real time so you can keep track of what appliances affect your electricity consumption and impact your bill.
However, they don't automatically send your data to your supplier so you still have to manually take meter readings.
|Smart meter||Smart thermostat||Energy monitor|
|Automatically sends meter readings to your supplier|
|Tells you how much energy you're using|
|Installed by your energy supplier at no extra cost|
|Monitors your electricity use|
|Monitors your gas use|
|Monitors your heating|
|Controls your heating|
I have an energy monitor. Is that the same as a smart meter?
No. You can buy a whole range of energy monitors that monitor how much electricity you're using, but they can't measure gas or send data about your energy use to your energy supplier.
Only a smart meter can:
- get you accurate bills from your energy supplier – no more estimates
- show you what you’re spending in pounds and pence in near real time
- make manual meter readings a thing of the past
Will I still be sent energy bills?
Yes. Your in-home display is for information only. You will still receive regular energy bills in the same way you do now, whether that's in the post or online, but now they'll be accurate, without you having to submit a manual meter reading. Depending on your energy supplier, you may also receive some energy efficiency advice.