Coronavirus: managing your energy

We know it’s a worrying time. To help you, we’ve created answers to the questions we’re being asked the most right now. You’ll find lots of help here. But if you don’t find the answer you’re looking for, you can ask us on Twitter or pick the brains of other members on our forum.

See our main coronavirus help page >

We regularly review our policies to make sure we’re following the government’s latest guidelines – for all areas in the UK.

General questions

Will my energy supply be affected?

No, there’s no reason to worry about your supply. We’re taking lots of steps to make sure it’s protected.

How should I get in touch at this time?

With restrictions in place across the country, we want you to know everything is working as normal. Our phone lines might get a bit busier. So if you’re able to, please use our online services and app where possible. You can use your account to send meter readings, make payments, and see your energy use.

Download our app here for Android and here for iOS

Log into your online account here.

If you have a non-urgent question, please check the help pages on our website. If you can’t find what you need, you can:

  • Ask a question on Twitter
  • Chat to us online
  • Get support from our community on the forum

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can. 

If you have an emergency, you've lost your energy supply or you can’t pay your bill, you can call us on 0330 303 5063 (Monday to Friday 8am-6pm). There may be longer waiting times than normal. But we want you to know that we’ll do everything we can to help.

I don’t have any credit on my phone to call you. How can I get in touch?

Don’t worry – any calls you make to 0330 303 5063 will be included in your minutes so free to call. You can also request a call back. Or, you can:

  • Ask a question on Twitter
  • Chat to us online
  • Get support from our community on the forum
How do I change my Direct Debit?

Changing your direct debit is simple. You can do it in your online account or using the app. 

Download our app here for Android and here for iOS

Log into your online account here.

How do I make a top-up payment?

You can make a top-up payment using your online account or the app. 

Download our app here for Android and here for iOS

Log into your online account here.

To help, we’ve created these short videos. If your account looks like the picture below, watch this video:

Or if your account looks like this picture, then this is the video for you:

I’m going to lose power and it’s an emergency, what should I do?

If it’s an emergency or you might lose power, please ring our team on 0330 303 5063. We’ve set up a dedicated team in our call centre to help those who are struggling.  We’re doing everything we can to make sure nobody is left without power.

There might be longer waiting times than normal, but we want you to know that we’ll do everything we can to help.

How will your service be affected by coronavirus?

We want you to know everything is working as normal. Our phone lines might get a bit busier. So if you’re able to, please submit readings and manage payments in your online account or through our app. You can also contact us on social media with general questions:

  • Download our app here for Android and here for iOS
  • Log into your online account
  • Ask a question on Twitter
  • Chat to us online
  • Get support from our community on the forum

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

How will you protect me if your team needs to enter my home for a smart meter or meter reading appointment?

Our teams have been specially trained on how to keep everyone safe, while they’re inside your home.  We’ll always be following the latest government advice for your area and will only enter your home when allowed:

  • On the day of your appointment, our team will call ahead to check it’s still safe to visit. They’ll ask if anyone in your household is unwell or self-isolating. If this is the case, your appointment will need to be rescheduled. 
  • When the engineer arrives, they’ll check this again with you in person.
  • Our engineers will wear face coverings at all times while they're in your home.
  • Our engineers will also be observing social distancing, which includes asking you to stay safe in another room while they work. Wherever possible, please give the engineer space to work safely.  
  • Our engineer may take more frequent breaks to get fresh air. They will also ask you to open windows and doors close to the meter for the duration of their visit. 

All our engineers will stop working immediately if anyone shows any symptoms of coronavirus, during their visit. 

Important: if you or anyone in your home is self- isolating or feels unwell before your appointment, please give us a call on 0330 303 5063 and we’ll work through your options. Even if you’re ill, we’ll do everything we can to stop you losing power. Our phone lines might be busy, but please bear with us and we’ll be with you as soon as possible.

I want to switch suppliers. Can I still do this?

Yes, you’re still able to switch energy suppliers in the normal way. You can switch to OVO easily online here. If you want to leave us, you're still able to do this as well.

If you're worried about paying your bills

I’m using more energy because I’m working from home, what can I do?

We know that this is an extremely difficult time – and that staying at home means you’ll probably use more energy than usual. But if you want some practical help to cut your energy use – and bills – head here.

Where can I go to get more help if I’m struggling with my energy because of a coronavirus-related situation?

We're working with Tully to improve the support we can give to members who are struggling with their bills due to coronavirus. If you’d like to see how Tully could help you, just click here. The scheme is completely free. Just so you know, clicking here will take you to the Tully website. Please note that the Tully Privacy policy will apply in relation to any data you submit.

You can find out more about Tully below.

These organisations also offer brilliant help and advice for anyone struggling to manage – or pay for – their energy. 

What if I can’t afford my bills because of a coronavirus-related situation?

We know that this is a really tough time for so many of us. If you’re struggling, please give us a call on 0330 303 5063. Together we’ll help find a manageable plan that works for you.

Our opening times are Monday to Friday, 8am - 6pm.

What if I can’t afford debt repayments because of the impacts of coronavirus?

We understand many people already have, or are worried about losing income. Right now, our priority is to protect our most vulnerable customers. Which is why we’ve set up a dedicated team in our call centre to support those who are struggling. 

If you can’t repay your debt, it’s important you let us know so that we can work out a manageable plan for you. We’ll review your individual situation and talk you through the options. Our number is 0330 303 5063 and our opening times are Monday to Friday, 8am - 6pm. Our phone lines might be busier than usual, but please bear with us.

I'm worried about being able to pay for my OVO HomePlan Boiler and Home Emergency cover due to coronavirus. What can I do?

We know that this is a really tough time for so many of us, and we don't want OVO HomePlan to be another thing on your list to worry about. If you're struggling to pay for OVO HomePlan, please call us on 0800 012 1232 and we'll do everything we can to help.

Payment support from Tully

I’m struggling to manage my bills. What is Tully?

Tully offers support for people who are being financially impacted by the coronavirus crisis.

We’re working with Tully to improve the support we can give to members who are struggling with their bills due to coronavirus

Tully provides a range of services: when you’re struggling to pay your bills it’ll help you apply for reduced energy payment plans that are tailored to your needs. But it also offers financial advice, mental health support and more.

If you’d like to see how Tully could help you, just click here. The tool is completely free to use. Just so you know, by clicking here you will be transferred to the Tully website. Please note that the Tully Privacy policy will apply in relation to any data you submit.

How does Tully work?

First, you’ll need to head to Tully to answer a few short questions about your current financial situation. For example, they’ll want to know if you’ve been furloughed, or if you’re worried about making ends meet. 

Based on your answers, Tully will then give you tools and advice that’s tailored to your circumstances. The next step is to use Tully’s tool to help you build a realistic personal budget, and work out what you can afford to spend on energy.

Once you’ve done this, Tully will let OVO know whether you can afford your current repayments. Then OVO will work with you to agree a manageable payment plan.

On top of this, you’ll also have access to extra financial and wellbeing advice and guidance: from tips on working from home, to how to keep busy during the lockdown.

Is Tully free?

Yes, Tully is completely free to use.

Why is OVO working with Tully?

We want to make sure we have the best tools available for people who are struggling with their bills due to recent events. And because Tully are experts at offering this kind of support, we’ve chosen to team up with them during this difficult time.

Is it safe to share my information with Tully?

Yes, Tully is a Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) authorised company who have helped thousands of people work out a plan and move forward with their money. Tully will process your data in accordance with their privacy policy. Their FCA license number is 811098 – and you can see exactly how they’re licensed to support you here.

Can I trust Tully?

Yes, you can trust Tully. That’s why we’ve carefully chosen to partner with them. They’re FCA authorised, and listed on the Government’s Money Advice Service website as a recommended free service provider.

What will Tully share with OVO?

So that we can identify you, Tully will share your name, address and date of birth with OVO. Tully will also share what they’ve concluded from the details you’ve given: for example, whether you can afford your current payments or not. This is so we can create a payment plan that works for you. Tully won’t share any other personal or banking information with us.

Is Tully part of the OVO Group?

No, Tully is an independent company, partnering with OVO to give independent financial and wellbeing support.

How long does it take for Tully to process my information?

It takes Tully around 10-15 minutes to get back to you. Then, you can spend as long as you want reading through the content and advice they give you.

Find out more about the service offered by Tully here.

Meter readings, smart meters and home visits

How can I submit a meter reading myself?

If you have a smart meter your readings will update automatically, so there’s nothing to worry about.

We’re asking anyone who doesn’t have a smart meter to submit their readings through their online account or in the OVO app. It’s really easy to submit readings this way – and we thank you for your support. To help, we've created some short videos showing you how.

If your online account looks like the picture below, you can watch this video on how to submit meter readings:

Or if your account looks like this, here's the video for you:

To submit a meter reading online, log into your account, here.

Or download the OVO app for Android here or for iOS here.

Are you still going to be reading meters?

Where the government advice allows, we’re carrying out meter reading appointments for both outside and inside meter reading appointments – with the help of our partner, MDS. We’ll be following all the latest government guidance in your area to keep you, and our team, safe.

Important: if you or anyone in your home is self-isolating or feels unwell before your appointment, please give us a call on 0330 303 5063 and we’ll work through your options.

How will you be keeping me safe during meter reading appointments?

We have strict measures in place to keep both you and our teams safe. When we arrive, we’ll check if anyone in your home is self-isolating or sick. If they are, we won’t be able to carry out any appointments to read meters that are inside your home.

Our team will:

  • Apply hand sanitiser before and after entering your home
  • Keep a 2 meter social distance at all times
  • Wear face coverings at all times while they're in your home

We’ll always be following the latest government advice for your area and will only enter your home when allowed.

Are you taking new smart meter appointment bookings?

Smart meter appointments are safely going ahead where the government’s local advice allows – and with strict safety measures in place. 

We can only carry out appointments where it’s safe to do so, and guidelines allow. This means we still won’t be carrying out non-emergency appointments in homes where anyone is unwell, or self-isolating from coronavirus - or where local advice doesn’t allow us to. 

If the government’s advice changes after your appointment is booked, we may need to postpone or cancel the appointment. If this happens, we will always make sure to let you know. 

We install smart meters because they help you to manage your energy better. Smart meters send readings automatically, so you get more accurate bills, and a clearer understanding of how you’re using energy. 

Our full risk assessment for smart meter operations can be found here and for office workers here. You can also see confirmation that we comply with the government guidance on Staying COVID-19 Secure here.

What safety precautions will engineers take when installing my smart meter?

Our top priority is to keep you and our teams safe. They’re specially trained to take strict precautions while they’re inside your home. We’ll always be following the latest government advice for your area and will only enter your home when allowed:

  • On the day of your appointment, our team will call ahead to check it’s still safe to visit. They’ll ask if anyone in your household is unwell, or self-isolating. If this is the case, your appointment will need to be rescheduled.
  • When the engineer arrives, they’ll check this again with you in person.
  • Our engineers will wear face coverings at all times while they're in your home.
  • Our engineers will also be observing social distancing, which includes asking you to stay safe in another room while they work. Wherever possible, please give the engineer space to work safely.  
  • Our engineer may take more frequent breaks to get fresh air. They will also ask you to open windows and doors close to the meter for the duration of their visit. 

All our engineers will stop working immediately if anyone shows any symptoms of coronavirus, during their visit. If the local government advice does not allow home visits then we will postpone or cancel non-emergency appointments.

Important: if you or anyone in your home is self-isolating, or feels unwell before your appointment, please give us a call on 0330 303 5063 and we’ll work through your options. Even if you’re ill, we’ll do everything we can to stop you losing power. Our phone lines may be busy right now, but we’re prioritising those with emergencies like yours. Bear with us and we’ll be with you as quickly as possible.

I'm currently self-isolating. Can I book a meter reading appointment, or have a smart meter installed?

Unfortunately not. We’re taking strict measures to keep both you and our teams safe, so this means we’re not able to carry out appointments for people who are self-isolating. 

The only time we might carry out an appointment for people who are self-isolating is if it’s an emergency – and you’re at risk of losing power. If this is the case, please call us.

I’m in a high-risk category. Can I book a meter reading appointment, or have a smart meter installed?

In line with the government guidelines, you are able to book an appointment if you feel comfortable doing so and the local government advice allows. If you’ve been advised to shield and not go to work, you may choose to wait until a later date to have your smart meter installed.

If the government’s advice changes after your appointment is booked, we may need to postpone or cancel the appointment. If this happens, we will always make sure to let you know.  

Our teams have been specially trained on how to keep everyone safe. Find out more about the safety precautions they are taking, above. We’ll always be following the latest government guidance for your area. We’ll always be following the latest government advice for your area and will only enter your home when allowed.

I’m not in a high-risk category, but someone in my household is. Can I book a meter reading appointment, or have a smart meter installed?

In line with the government guidelines, you are able to book an appointment if everyone in your household feels comfortable doing so and government advice allows. If anyone in your household has been advised to shield and not go to work, you may choose to wait until a later date to have your smart meter installed.

If the government’s advice changes after your appointment is booked, we may need to postpone or cancel the appointment. If this happens, we will always make sure to let you know. 

Our teams have been specially trained on how to keep everyone safe. Find out more about the safety precautions they are taking, above.  We’ll always be following the latest government advice for your area and will only enter your home when allowed.

If I book a smart meter or meter reading appointment, but become unwell beforehand, can I reschedule?

Yes, no problem - you can reschedule the appointment by calling us on 0330 303 5063

Important: if you’re showing any symptoms of coronavirus, please make sure to reschedule for after the two week self-isolation period.

Will I be charged for rescheduling my appointment (at short notice) if I become unwell beforehand?

No, we won’t charge you a cancellation fee if you need to cancel because of a coronavirus-related situation, or if you become unwell.

Are smart meter installations being carried out across the whole UK?

We’re able to carry out smart meter appointments everywhere we have engineers operating and local advice allows. You can check their availability here.

If the government’s advice changes after your appointment is booked, we may need to postpone or cancel the appointment. If this happens, we will always make sure to let you know.

What safety precautions can I take for my smart meter appointment?

You can take the following steps to make sure things are as safe as possible: 

  • Before your appointment, disinfect the area around your meter where the engineer will be working. Do this again after they leave.
  • Open windows and doors in the room where the engineer will be working. 
  • Make sure the engineer has clear access to your meters, and they’re free from clutter. 
  • Stay at least 2m away from the engineer at all times. If possible, go into a different room while they’re installing your meter, and make sure pets are kept out of the way. 

We’ll call you the day before your appointment to check it’s still safe for us to visit. Please tell us if you or anyone in your household is unwell or self-isolating. When the engineer arrives, they will check this with you again. If the government’s advice changes after your appointment is booked, we may need to postpone or cancel the appointment. If this happens, we will always make sure to let you know. 

When you book, we’ll share even more info about what to do before, during and after your appointment, to stay as safe as possible.

I live in a one-bed/studio apartment, which will make it difficult to maintain social distancing while the engineer installs my smart meter. Can I still book an appointment? How will this work?

If you’re not able to maintain social distancing of at least 2m during your appointment (because of the size/layout of your home or for any other reason) then please don’t book one. We won’t be able to carry it out safely. 

If you’ve already booked a smart meter appointment but you don’t think you’ll be able to maintain social distancing, please cancel. You can do this via your appointment confirmation email, through your online account or on our app.

I have a feed in tariff but I can’t update my meter reading because of coronavirus. Am I going to lose my credit?

Unfortunately, without a meter reading, we’re unable to send your payment, as we won’t be able to work out how much we owe you. But if you're struggling to submit a meter read because you're unwell or unable to leave the house, please contact us on Twitter, or chat to us online.

What counts as an ‘essential appointment’?

These are appointments where meters are faulty and the member may be at risk of losing their energy supply because of this. If you already have an emergency appointment booked, then this will go ahead. 

If you have an emergency and your meter is broken, please call us on 0330 303 5063, Monday to Friday, 8am - 6pm and we’ll do all that we can to support you.

I have an emergency and need a repair, but someone in my home is sick or self-isolating. What should I do?

If your emergency means you’re going to lose power or you’ve already lost it, we can still help you – even if you or someone in your household is sick or self-isolating. We know this is a worrying time and we’re working very hard to try to make sure our members all have access to energy. 

Please give us a call on 0330 303 5063 and we’ll work through your options. Even if you are ill we will do everything we can to ensure you are not left without power. Our phone lines might be busier than normal, but we’re prioritising those with emergencies like yours. We’ll be with you as quickly as possible.

Are you still carrying out boiler maintenance appointments?

We’re now able to carry out boiler maintenance appointments everywhere government advice allows.  

If the government’s advice changes after your appointment is booked, we may need to postpone or cancel the appointment. If this happens, we will always make sure to let you know.

EV Charger Installations

I had an appointment booked for my EV charger installation. When will this be going ahead?

If you already had an appointment booked or you were waiting for one, our team will get in touch with you. Then, they'll help find a new time for your installation - which will be carried out with strict safety measures in place and where government advice allows. We'll continue to prioritise key workers in high tier areas. If the government’s advice changes after your appointment is booked, we may need to postpone or cancel the appointment. If this happens, we will always make sure to let you know. 

You can read our full risk assessment for EV charger installations here.

Can I book a maintenance appointment for my EV charger?

Yes, we’re now taking maintenance appointments again – while following strict safety measures and where government advice allows. If the government’s advice changes after your appointment is booked, we may need to postpone or cancel the appointment. If this happens, we will always make sure to let you know. 

If you’ve already told us that you have a technical problem with your charger, we’ll be in touch over the next few weeks. If you haven’t contacted us yet and need to book an appointment, please email smarthome@ovoenergy.com. Or you can call our installation partner, Charged EV, on 03300 431 851 (Monday to Friday, 8am-6pm).

I am unable to charge my EV, and need my car for an emergency - what should I do?

If you’re unable to charge your EV, please call 03300 431 851, Monday to Friday, 8am - 4.30pm to contact Charged EV, our installation partner, and we’ll do everything we can to help.

What safety precautions will engineers take when installing my charger?

Our teams have been specially trained on how to keep everyone safe, while they’re inside your home: 

  • On the day of your appointment, our team will call ahead to check it’s still safe to visit. They’ll ask if anyone in your household is self-isolating or has symptoms of coronavirus. If this is the case, your appointment will need to be rescheduled for a later date.
  • When the engineer arrives, they’ll check this again with you in person.
  • Our engineers will follow strict safety measures in line with government guidelines.
  • Our engineers will also be observing social distancing, which includes asking you to stay safe in another room while they work. Wherever possible, please give the engineers space to work safely.  
  • Our engineers may take more frequent breaks to get fresh air. They will also ask you to open windows and doors close to the meter for the duration of their visit. 

All our engineers will stop working immediately if anyone shows any symptoms of coronavirus, during their visit. If local government advice does not allow home visits then we will postpone or cancel non-emergency appointments.

Important: if you or anyone in your household becomes unwell before your appointment, please give us a call our installation partner on 03300 431 851 and we’ll work through your options.