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  1. Published on: 08/08/2018 08:56 AMReported by: roving-eye
    Smart meters are the next generation of gas and electricity meters and offer a range of intelligent ‘smart’ functions, much like your smartphone and smart TV.

    They are being installed across Great Britain as a part of a national upgrade to our energy system.

    Smart meters put people in control of their energy use by showing them how much energy they use in pounds and pence via an easy to understand In-Home Display.

    With accurate information at their fingertips, consumers can easily understand how they can make small changes to the way they use energy in order to use less and save money on their bills. This information can help them choose a better tariff or switch supplier, increasing their savings even further.

    Smart meters also communicate directly with your energy supplier meaning you will get accurate bills and only pay for what you use without the hassle of providing meter readings yourself or taking time out of your day to let the meter reader in.

    Consumers with smart pre-payment meters will be able to top up directly online, through an app or at the local shop. No more keys or cards, making it much more convenient. The prepay in-home display will have an easy-to-understand screen that will show how much credit is left. So no more late-night dashes out to top up your energy balance.

    Smart meters are the building blocks of a smarter energy system fit for the 21st century.

    Over 11 million meters are already empowering consumers to reap the rewards of a smarter energy system – with 400,000 more meters benefitting homes and businesses every month. 8 out of 10 of those with a smart meter would recommend them to friends and family.

    In the future, consumers will be able to choose for their new smart household gadgets and appliances to talk to their smart meter and help reduce their household bills. For example, your smart washing machine can automatically run at the cheapest time of the day, directed by information coming through your smart meter.

    The government is committed to every home and small business being offered a smart meter by end 2020 – you can choose whether to have one or not. There are clear standards of conduct, overseen by energy regulator Ofgem, that require suppliers to treat consumers fairly and not mislead them when marketing the benefits of smart meters to their customers.

    What are the benefits of smart meters?

    smart meters put consumers in control of their energy use, so they can save money on their bills – those savings will be worth more than £1.2 billion a year by 2030
    they provide easier, accurate billing and will help consumers choose the best deal for them
    no more estimated billing – something we only seem to tolerate in utilities – no more having to crawl under the stairs or to take time out of your day to provide manual readings to your supplier
    smart meters are set to be the cornerstone of the smart energy system of the future, potentially saving Great Britain up to £40 billion between now and 2050
    What do energy consumers who already have smart meters think?

    82% of people with smart meters say they have a better idea of their energy costs
    8 out 10 people with smart meters say they would recommend them to friends or family
    90% of people with a smart meter say they are satisfied with the installation process
    hundreds of thousands of energy consumers are choosing to have smart meters in their homes every month
    Myths

    Myth 1: Smart meters stop people from switching and lock them into one supplier

    Fact: That is simply untrue. All consumers can switch whenever they want. In fact households with smart meters are more likely to switch than those who don’t have one, with 23% of people with smart meters switching in the last year, versus 17% without a smart meter.(1)

    Myth 2: Smart meters don’t really help you save money

    Fact: Not true. More than 80% of people with smart meters have taken steps to reduce their energy use and as a result, cut their bills.(2) It is estimated smart meters will take £300 million off consumer’s bills in 2020, rising to more than £1.2 billion per year by 2030 – an average annual saving of £47 per household.(3) 8 in 10 consumers with a smart meter would recommend one to family and friends.(4)

    Myth 3: People are being forced to have smart meters installed

    Fact: Not true. Those customers who want to benefit from having a smart meter can have one installed at no extra cost, but installing a smart meter is always the customer’s choice and people have the right to say no.

    Myth 4: Suppliers are bullying consumers into having a smart meter installed

    Fact: Ofgem has made it clear suppliers must treat customers fairly and their communications must be complete, accurate and not misleading. Ofgem will take up complaints with energy suppliers for customers who feel they are being bullied or coerced into getting a smart meter.

    Myth 5: Smart meters can be hacked and are a safety hazard in the home

    Fact: Smart meters are secure, with a security system developed by leading experts in industry and government including GCHQ’s National Cyber Security Centre.

    Smart meter installations are also making British homes safer. In 2017, over a quarter of a million safety issues, unrelated to the smart meter installation, were identified by smart meter installers, as a result of free visual safety checks, helping to protect households across Great Britain.

    Myth 6: Suppliers are installing ‘dumb’ meters that fail when you switch supplier

    Fact: All smart meters offer the same smart functions to customers. Some first generation smart meters may lose some smart functionality if consumers switch but 93% of those installed remain unaffected. This issue is only temporary however and all smart meters will retain their full capabilities when they are enrolled into the national wireless smart meter network. This upgrade will begin early in 2019 and will happen automatically without the consumer needing to do anything.

    Myth 7: Consumers with poor mobile signal can’t get a smart meter

    Fact: By the end of the year more than 95% of households will have signal, rising to 99.25% by the end of 2020 – meaning that almost every household who wants one will be able to have a smart meter.

    Myth 8: Suppliers aren’t making enough progress on the rollout of smart meters

    Fact: Over 400,000 smart meters are being installed every month and 11 million are already operating across Great Britain. Ofgem holds suppliers to account to ensure they are meeting their obligations to roll out smart meters and can fine energy companies for missing targets.

    Myth 9: Smart meters can turn off your fridge without you knowing

    Fact: No they can’t. It will always be up to consumers to decide when to use their appliances. In the future smart meters will allow consumers to be rewarded when they use appliances at times when energy is cheaper.

    Myth 10: Smart meters mean suppliers can charge higher prices without you knowing

    Fact: Energy suppliers can only charge prices customers have agreed to – and that won’t change. Customers with smart meters can access tariffs that allow them to get cheaper prices at times when demand is low – but it will always be the customer’s choice.
     

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    Your Comments:


  3. pedoja says:08/08/2018 09:17 AM
    Smart Meters do all that BUT they DON'T bring down your bills UNLESS you actually look at them very often and physically TURN OFF your heating!

  4. Pipo says:08/08/2018 10:17 AM
    agree! how can you save money if you need to use an appliance! you will start to drink warm tea, have warm showers, only watch half coronation street, walk in the dark, eat lightly browned toast, bake a tart while you roast a garlic flavoured chicken in the same oven..etc.... i don't understand how you would save money if you need the use the electric for everyday living.
    Have some self control ie don't leave the light on if your'e not in a room, dont try to warm the house with the oven on etc etc.....tra la la !

  5. Ceam says:08/08/2018 10:23 AM
    Myth 11: Smart meters will bring down your bills.


    Fact : Turning things off/down will bring down your bills.

  6. Lorquinho says:08/08/2018 11:12 AM
    A committee of 92 MPs and Peers reported recently that the annual saving for consumers will be £11.

    Total cost of the project which users are paying for through increased bills is £11 BILLION.

    The report also said that:

    More than half of smart meters "go dumb" after switching, meaning they stop communicating with the supplier

    Up to 10% of smart meters don't work, because they are in areas where mobile phone signals are not strong enough

    By the end of the year (2018) only 22% of households will have the meters installed, meaning the 2020 deadline is certain to be missed

    The eventual cost of the programme could even outweigh the benefits. The £11 billion could rise to £16.7 billion or higher.

    The roll out was as a result of an EU Directive originally started in 2006. There was a get out clause which Germany, Belgium and others opted for on the grounds they would not be a cost effective solution.

  7. gsgsgs says:08/08/2018 11:43 AM
    I had smart meters installed by choice in February 2017, I was under no illusion that they would save me money the only way to save money is to turn things off.

    Am I going to have less showers, less cups of tea, eat more salad or watch less telly in a word no.

    The smart display is a pain in the ar#e, you get paranoid in monitoring it so I hid mine.

    One advantage of the meters is no longer having to read/submit your own readings, so long as you stay with an energy supplier capable of connecting to your meters, I switched suppliers to a much cheaper company (Iresa, well that bit me on the bum!) who could not do so so my smart meters became dumb.

    Also, with my smart display my gas reading is shown in Kwh's not m3 so I still have to read the meter or convert Kwh to m3 to submit an accurate gas reading.

    Luckily my new supplier following Iresa's demise is capable of reading my meters so hopefully that glitch will no longer be an issue.

  8. Ceam says:08/08/2018 11:44 AM
    Here's a little conspiracy theory I've just thought of.

    This is all in preparation for when the majority of cars are electric and they can charge us extra tax if the power used is for charging your car rather than your house. Let's face it there is going to be a huge tax hole when people convert over from Petrol/diesel.

  9. Lorquinho says:08/08/2018 12:13 PM
    The intention seems to be a return to something similar the old white meter night time off-peak use of electric storage heaters for car charging by 2030.

    The concept of switching appliances like washing machines on in the off-peak time may not appeal to everyone. Leaving damp clothes in a machine for several hours is not a great idea.

    The original post is, as usual, lifted from elsewhere. In this case from the gov website and is unadulterated propaganda probably as a result of the MPs criticism. There are links to the (1) (2) references which roving eye missed editing.
    https://www.gov.uk/government/news/s...e-smart-choice

    The National Audit Office is due to report on the viability of the project fairly soon. Could be interesting.

  10. ainsdale local says:08/08/2018 02:39 PM
    Myth no 12. Smart Meters are free. NO. They have been or are currently being paid for by additions to all energy bills whether you accept one or not.

  11. Sproggy the Cat says:08/08/2018 02:53 PM
    Had a smart meter for about a year now, in that time my gas / electric bills has risen. We live in an energy saving house and I have installed all LED lighting throughout.
    The only advantage to these meters are for the supplier, no more meter reading and they can control your meter back in their sites.
    The fact is you only have control of your usage by an on/off switch, if you want to spend your weekend analysing the figures then go for it.

  12. Tallboy says:08/08/2018 05:35 PM
    Well maybe I've just been lucky!
    I used a "Smart-meter" as soon as I could. I've not had an estimated bill since, my combined gas & Power bills are now (in real terms) the lowest they've been in twenty years! Yes, consciously do turn things off e.g. I don't leave the TV on standby / if its not being used its turned off at the plug, combined with low energy bulbs and an economy Combi-boiler its all delivered the goods.....
    Think I forgot to mention my smart meter is fact my brain and I manually read the meters each quarter and load the readings up to the suppliers website - Job Done!!

  13. silver fox says:08/08/2018 08:13 PM
    What I really love is the arrogance of these suppliers/fitters, I got a letter telling me that "MY" appointment to have my smart meter would be on "date supplied" and could I ensure that access would be available on the date given.

    Seeing that I had not requested a smart meter, nor any fitter/technician, I simply ignored the directive and will continue to ignore them until all systems are compatible with all suppliers, until then frankly the powers that be can go whistle.

    The other side of the coin is of course, do any of us trust the energy supplier's motives for this "upgrade"? sure as hell it isn't meant to benefit the customer.

  14. cotton man says:09/08/2018 09:27 AM
    Those readers who are old enough will remember the European Economic Comunity being sold to us on the basis of free trade, we now see that was a massive government confidence trick. Beware this is another one.

  15. rolling-thunder says:09/08/2018 11:59 AM
    Technology has advanced & obsolete meters are being fitted. The suppliers can't cope with the demand, we were told that we would have our meters installed in October which has now been moved to as and when they can get round to it. We were told we wouldn't be paying for this installation and yet I've heard of incidences of a tariff being added to the bills of some people. There is much misinformation.

  16. clive764 says:09/08/2018 01:46 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by rolling-thunder View Post
    Technology has advanced & obsolete meters are being fitted. The suppliers can't cope with the demand, we were told that we would have our meters installed in October which has now been moved to as and when they can get round to it. We were told we wouldn't be paying for this installation and yet I've heard of incidences of a tariff being added to the bills of some people. There is much misinformation.
    Everyone is paying for these SMART meters, the cost is added to everyone's bills.


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