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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.

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Smart thermostats


These connect to your wifi so that you can control your heating and hot water remotely through your smart phone.

The main differences are:

smart thermostat
Smart thermostats Smart meters
Control your thermostat remotely Monitor your gas and electricity usage
Won’t show you how much you’re actually spending. However, some may provide an estimate Show you how much energy you're using and the cost in pounds and pence, in near real time
Monitor your overall heating usage Monitor overall energy use across all appliances
Often cost money to buy and install Do not cost you anything and are free to install
Require wifi Do not need to connect to wifi

Energy monitors


These are simple handheld or tabletop devices that estimate the amount of electricity you use in real time.

The main differences are:

energy monitor
 Energy monitors  Smart meters
Monitor your electricity use in near real time. (Most do not measure gas) Monitor your gas and electricity usage in near real time
Do not send any information to your energy supplier Send data wirelessly to your energy supplier
Need you to manually provide meter readings Remove the need for meter readings
Cost money to buy and install Do not cost you anything and are installed without charge


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. Only 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.