Smart meter

52
Found 27th Dec 2017
My dad gets his gas and electricity with NPower and I am considering asking NPower to install smart meters at his house, which their website state is free.

I can only see the benefit of smart meters, but are there any disadvantage to getting smart meters installed at all? I assume none, but worth checking before I book an appointment.
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You can legally refuse a smart meter - and at the moment I certainly wouldn't do it voluntarily . My gut feeling is that they will offer incentives to you to fit one - then variable charging will come in -which will suit the energy suppliers not the consumer .

My informed view (take it or leave it ) is to stay well clear of "smart" meters for the time being , too risky just to save you reading the meter on a monthly basis -its what I do .
Edited by: "rogparki" 27th Dec 2017
52 Comments
Think they are fitting the 2nd gen smart meters now. 1st gen become dum metres if you swap suppliers. I can't see the point in them unless they introduce variable prices depending on the time of day you use power
Edited by: "wayners" 27th Dec 2017
wayners13 m ago

Think they are fitting the 2nd gen smart meters now. 1st gen become dum …Think they are fitting the 2nd gen smart meters now. 1st gen become dum metres if you swap suppliers. I can't see the point in them unless they introduce variable prices depending on the time of day you use power


i want them installed so we don't have the hassle of reading the blooming meters. i am thinking of doing so at my own house as well for the same reason.
Yes that's the point ,previously Smart Meters ,didn't always work if you switched , or came up with silly bills resulting in months of arguments . I have nothing against them in principle - but I wouldn't touch them with a barge pole at the moment . I would seriously advise you to hold off for a year or so and do further research -Most reviews I have read are very negative so far .
Edited by: "rogparki" 27th Dec 2017
mutley13 m ago

i want them installed so we don't have the hassle of reading the blooming …i want them installed so we don't have the hassle of reading the blooming meters. i am thinking of doing so at my own house as well for the same reason.


If you change supplier you may need to start reading figures again. Crazy or what.. New 2nd gen meters rolling out I heard recently...
Edited by: "wayners" 27th Dec 2017
rogparki1 m ago

Yes that's the point ,previously Smart Meters ,didn't always work if you …Yes that's the point ,previously Smart Meters ,didn't always work if you switched , or came up with silly bills resulting in months of arguments . I have nothing against them in principle - but I wouldn't touch them with a barge pole at the moment .


this is the very reason i posted this question as they sound smart, but are they accurate????
There is a theory that the electricity companies are issuing smart meters as a trojan horse, they are struggling to keep up with the demand of electricity at the moment and things are going to get a lot worse in the future.
By getting smart meters into every home they will apparently be able to throttle peoples supplies at times of high demand/ peak times, a bit like the telecoms people did/ do with broadband. This will make the consumer more efficient supposedly.

Not sure if it' a good or bad thing myself although I can see them cashing in on it and hiking up prices at peak times.
You can legally refuse a smart meter - and at the moment I certainly wouldn't do it voluntarily . My gut feeling is that they will offer incentives to you to fit one - then variable charging will come in -which will suit the energy suppliers not the consumer .

My informed view (take it or leave it ) is to stay well clear of "smart" meters for the time being , too risky just to save you reading the meter on a monthly basis -its what I do .
Edited by: "rogparki" 27th Dec 2017
I was under the impression that 1st gen smart meters are per provider, so switching means getting it swapped.
2nd gen smart meters can be used by all providers, which makes switching easier, quicker and most likely cheaper.

Personally I'm holding off until the 2nd gen before getting one installed.
The government are trying desperately to push smart meters with various advertising campaigns, which tells me that most people aren’t interested in them (even with them being free). There’s every chance that if they aren’t taken up on a large scale they could be dropped. Or, replaced by an updated version.

I’m wary of them, it’s another element of big brother scooping up more data. There are reports of them being hacked (I don’t know if that is accurate, but there’s certainly the potential).

Also, I’m not sure on this (please check!) but if you switch provider you may have to get them out to fit their smart meter. That’s my lack of research, so type that into a search engine.

For me, opening a hatch and sending a reading via my phone app every 3 months isn’t a hardship. But then, some people are into the ‘connected’ home, and like switching off a light switch with their phone.
I have smart meters and all I can say is don't fit them, They don't work. Readings and not sent to the inside display and the app is just rubbish not reading the meters at all.

Tariff has gone up and i am using more gas and electricity.

I am with EON and will be changing as soon as I can to another provider so I can get rid of them

All i get from EON is that they are aware of the issues but can't fix them.

I think they are throttling the supply as my gas pressure has also dropped acording to my boiler service report
As a previous poster mentioned, one wonders if they could be a Trojan horse - I’ve spent almost 30 seconds and I can’t think of a motive, but there usually is one when the government is giving you something for free!

I’m certain they’re pushing super fast broadband only so that GCHQ can scoop up all the data on your computer quicker (— I’m not that paranoid, yet).
rogparki40 m ago

You can legally refuse a smart meter - and at the moment I certainly …You can legally refuse a smart meter - and at the moment I certainly wouldn't do it voluntarily . My gut feeling is that they will offer incentives to you to fit one - then variable charging will come in -which will suit the energy suppliers not the consumer . My informed view (take it or leave it ) is to stay well clear of "smart" meters for the time being , too risky just to save you reading the meter on a monthly basis -its what I do .


Can I ask what you mean by ‘variable charging’? It’s not a subject I’m clued up on at all, I just wondered what it is and why it would suit the providers (which I can readily believe would be the real reason the government is pushing this tech).
I couldn't get one because there was no mobile reception where my meter is.
scott_lithgows4 m ago

I couldn't get one because there was no mobile reception where my meter is.



Maybe the reason mine is not comunicating as it should, mobile reception in my village area is not great I have to use call by wifi
wayners1 h, 34 m ago

Think they are fitting the 2nd gen smart meters now. 1st gen become dum …Think they are fitting the 2nd gen smart meters now. 1st gen become dum metres if you swap suppliers. I can't see the point in them unless they introduce variable prices depending on the time of day you use power


1st gen ones I had from BG were problematic. Good luck with 2nd gen ones.
There's no snooping. They can't throttle your usage. They aren't a Trojan horse. They can't throttle your gas pressure (this is governed by the regulator, if it's low, phone national grid). They have never been hacked.

There are a few reasons to not have them though.
If you have an old analogue meter, it may be running slow so you will paying less than what you're using. Therefore your bills will go up. You could also be paying too much though, so your bills might come down.
The reasons to have them far outweigh the reasons not to. If you embrace the in home display they really can save your energy usage.
Dont get one fitted until the 2nd gen ones are out. I have had them fitted 2yrs ago which took 3hrs, Never ever told me what my bill would be for that quarter. I have changed supplier and now they dont work at all. But the pain comes when your new supplier asks you for a reading. You have to press this button so many times until this display appears for your elec reading, then the same thing with the gas meter. Its a right pain. Its costs your supplier over £300 to have them fitted and so far £82m have been wasted because they are useless once you change supplier.
Not having it till they force me
craigstephens26 m ago

There's no snooping. They can't throttle your usage. They aren't a Trojan …There's no snooping. They can't throttle your usage. They aren't a Trojan horse. They can't throttle your gas pressure (this is governed by the regulator, if it's low, phone national grid). They have never been hacked.There are a few reasons to not have them though. If you have an old analogue meter, it may be running slow so you will paying less than what you're using. Therefore your bills will go up. You could also be paying too much though, so your bills might come down.The reasons to have them far outweigh the reasons not to. If you embrace the in home display they really can save your energy usage.


How exactly are they going to save my energy usage?
I'm not going to stop putting the kettle on or turn the heating off.
Just do a comparison on mse and see how much you can save him by nit being an npower customer, probably more than you would by getting him to switch everything off unless he is on one of the amazing deals which have been around for a long time.
shadey127 m ago

How exactly are they going to save my energy usage?I'm not going to stop …How exactly are they going to save my energy usage?I'm not going to stop putting the kettle on or turn the heating off.


Me neither. But it's the little things that all add up that make a difference. Once you see how much your home costs to run when you're not even in it, you might start unplugging thing that are usually left on standby etc.
craigstephens35 m ago

There's no snooping. They can't throttle your usage. They aren't a Trojan …There's no snooping. They can't throttle your usage. They aren't a Trojan horse. They can't throttle your gas pressure (this is governed by the regulator, if it's low, phone national grid). They have never been hacked.There are a few reasons to not have them though. If you have an old analogue meter, it may be running slow so you will paying less than what you're using. Therefore your bills will go up. You could also be paying too much though, so your bills might come down.The reasons to have them far outweigh the reasons not to. If you embrace the in home display they really can save your energy usage.


Respectfully, I do wonder if they are a money saver. One’s habits decide: the government promoted loft insulation to reduce energy usage (presumably in an effort to reduce energy usage, and the associated CO2 as part of its international agreement toward the Kyoto protocol) yet various studies (...yes, I know, take studies with a pinch of salt unless you work in the respective sector and understand the context) have shown home owners didn’t cut down, they carried on as normal; I reckon these things are the same. I don’t think there’s a good reason to have them. But that’s me; I’m glad that you enjoy having one.
Joey.Bloggsy11 m ago

Not having it till they force me


They'll never become mandatory. There are too many occasions where people who want them, for one reason or another, can't have them. And as long as this is the case, they'll never be able to make people that don't want them have them.
craigstephens19 m ago

Me neither. But it's the little things that all add up that make a …Me neither. But it's the little things that all add up that make a difference. Once you see how much your home costs to run when you're not even in it, you might start unplugging thing that are usually left on standby etc.


If I'm out for more than a couple of hours the only things left on are the f/f and security.
The people it would benefit are maybe the people who don't really care anyway. (Just my opinion)
Edit, I wonder if it could put some elderly people off putting their heating on when they see the £s clocking up.
Edited by: "shadey12" 27th Dec 2017
lockwoodisbored16 m ago

Respectfully, I do wonder if they are a money saver. One’s habits decide: t …Respectfully, I do wonder if they are a money saver. One’s habits decide: the government promoted loft insulation to reduce energy usage (presumably in an effort to reduce energy usage, and the associated CO2 as part of its international agreement toward the Kyoto protocol) yet various studies (...yes, I know, take studies with a pinch of salt unless you work in the respective sector and understand the context) have shown home owners didn’t cut down, they carried on as normal; I reckon these things are the same. I don’t think there’s a good reason to have them. But that’s me; I’m glad that you enjoy having one.


I don't have them.
To add to the above post I'd also be worried about who are installing these smart meters. At the moment I've heard stories of inexperienced fitters fitting these and they have caused fires!
Evouk6 m ago

To add to the above post I'd also be worried about who are installing …To add to the above post I'd also be worried about who are installing these smart meters. At the moment I've heard stories of inexperienced fitters fitting these and they have caused fires!


Watchdog,
bbc.co.uk/pro…ons
Evouk32 m ago

To add to the above post I'd also be worried about who are installing …To add to the above post I'd also be worried about who are installing these smart meters. At the moment I've heard stories of inexperienced fitters fitting these and they have caused fires!


What you won't have heard stories of are the (literally) hundreds of accidents that have been averted by engineers visiting homes. They're not just turning up and swapping meters. It's like a nation wide survey of every homes electricity cutouts and gas tightness.
lockwoodisbored2 h, 57 m ago

Can I ask what you mean by ‘variable charging’? It’s not a subject I’m clue …Can I ask what you mean by ‘variable charging’? It’s not a subject I’m clued up on at all, I just wondered what it is and why it would suit the providers (which I can readily believe would be the real reason the government is pushing this tech).


Variable charging - putting the price up when there is heavy demand.
The other Trojan that's mentioned from time to time is that smart meters could be simply switched to charge for power factor - which does not cost you extra at the moment unless you are on something bigger than a residential tariff.
Before reading all these comments i was against having these installed - after reading, I still am. I'm fine with recording readings myself and submitting them monthly. Npower did get in touch with me recently GIVING me a date for the installAtion. I didn't even bother responding. Very unlikely to have these installed, recording and monitoring your readings isn't the most difficult tasks
Thanks for your comments guys. Just as well I asked.

I was not expecting to hear this as I thought smart meters were a great idea. I will leave it as it sounds like trouble that I don't need right now.
Well I know plenty of people including my dad that have them and they work perfectly fine. I like many here have resisted them but think in principle they are a great idea.

If energy companies can tell when people use the most electric they can pass the info onto the national grid which can ensure there is plenty of power being generated at those times and reduce power generation at other times.
craigstephens13 h, 16 m ago

There's no snooping. They can't throttle your usage. They aren't a Trojan …There's no snooping. They can't throttle your usage. They aren't a Trojan horse. They can't throttle your gas pressure (this is governed by the regulator, if it's low, phone national grid). They have never been hacked.There are a few reasons to not have them though. If you have an old analogue meter, it may be running slow so you will paying less than what you're using. Therefore your bills will go up. You could also be paying too much though, so your bills might come down.The reasons to have them far outweigh the reasons not to. If you embrace the in home display they really can save your energy usage.


The only decent post in this thread. So much hear say/BS in other posts.
cmdr_elito1 h, 20 m ago

Well I know plenty of people including my dad that have them and they work …Well I know plenty of people including my dad that have them and they work perfectly fine. I like many here have resisted them but think in principle they are a great idea.If energy companies can tell when people use the most electric they can pass the info onto the national grid which can ensure there is plenty of power being generated at those times and reduce power generation at other times.


I think the national grid have a bit of an idea when we use power, they really don't need smart meters for that.
shadey1214 m ago

I think the national grid have a bit of an idea when we use power, they …I think the national grid have a bit of an idea when we use power, they really don't need smart meters for that.


I know that but it’s not as developed as you may think.
mutley12 h, 59 m ago

Thanks for your comments guys. Just as well I asked.I was not expecting …Thanks for your comments guys. Just as well I asked.I was not expecting to hear this as I thought smart meters were a great idea. I will leave it as it sounds like trouble that I don't need right now.


So you're siding with the conspiracy theorists? Trust me, there's nothing sinister going on with smart meters.
craigstephens16 h, 12 m ago

There's no snooping. They can't throttle your usage. They aren't a Trojan …There's no snooping. They can't throttle your usage. They aren't a Trojan horse. They can't throttle your gas pressure (this is governed by the regulator, if it's low, phone national grid). They have never been hacked.There are a few reasons to not have them though. If you have an old analogue meter, it may be running slow so you will paying less than what you're using. Therefore your bills will go up. You could also be paying too much though, so your bills might come down.The reasons to have them far outweigh the reasons not to. If you embrace the in home display they really can save your energy usage.


"If you have an old analogue meter, it may be running slow so you will paying less than what you're using."

But it could also be running fast.
@mutley1 Not sure if your dad falls into this category, but according to ofcom if the house is unoccupied and no one available to read the meter or you are unable to read the meter (regd blind or disabled) then the supplier will send someone out periodically to read the meter for you. Also goes for water meters as well.
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