Smart technology

Meter reading problems

Learn how to solve problems with your meter readings – with advice on everything from incorrect readings to reading disputes.

What should I do if I’ve submitted the wrong meter readings?

If you gave us the wrong reading, here’s what to do.

If you’ve spotted this mistake on the same day, it’s easy to fix – just send us another reading, in the same way you did before. As long as we get the new reading before midnight that day, we’ll be able to use it to correct your account.

If your wrong meter reading is more than a day old – just get in touch via the Help Centre

How can I tell my day and night readings apart on a multi-rate meter?

You’re not alone – it’s really common! If you’ve got a traditional meter, and the 2 rows of figures aren’t labelled, you can do a simple “load test”.  

How to do a load test?

Just read both readings on your electricity meter twice on the same day – one in the morning (after 9am) and then in the afternoon or evening (before 9pm). Then email us at [email protected] with the following info:

  • Meter Serial Number: ***********
  • Date you took the meter readings: **/**/**
  • Morning meter readings: 
  • The time you took them: **am
  • The day register ID and reading: R* - *****
  • The night register ID and reading: R* - *****
  • Afternoon or evening meter readings: 
  • The time you took them: **pm.
  • The day register ID and reading: R* - *****
  • The night register ID and reading: R* - *****
  • Do you have an electric heating system (e.g. storage heaters)? Yes/No

Register IDs are the little numbers or letters on the left-hand side of the reading (e.g. R1/R2/L/N etc).

We’ll then get back in touch with you to sort it out. 

If you have a smart meter, use the advice here for help taking your readings. And follow the same instructions above to send us the details. 

What happens if I miss a meter reading?

If you miss a reading, we’ll have to estimate that month’s bill, based on older meter readings. 

Then, when we get your next meter reading, we’ll automatically check it against your estimated bill. If you paid too much or too little when we estimated your energy use, your next bill (using the actual reading) will be a little lower or higher, to even things out. This way, you’re only charged for what you’ve used.

Make sure you send us a reading each month on the last day of your billing period, to keep your bills up-to-date and 100% accurate. Or you can just get a smart meter to send your readings for you.

What if I think my opening meter reading is wrong?

If you think your opening meter reading isn’t right, just get in touch with us and we’ll take a look. If something seems wrong, we’ll open a “reading dispute” with your old supplier. 

What is a meter reading dispute?

When you join OVO Energy, we’ll ask you to send us your opening meter readings. If these are higher or lower than expected, we’ll need to do a little detective work to find out what's happened. This is called a meter reading dispute. 

How a meter reading dispute works

We’ll check with your old energy supplier to work out what the reading(s) should be, based on the amount of energy you used in the past.

How long can a dispute take?

We’ll get it sorted for you as quickly as we can – but it can take up to 14 weeks for electricity, and 8 weeks for gas (and longer in some cases). But rest assured, your energy supply won’t be affected while we do this, and we’ll bill you as usual.

How to avoid a meter reading dispute

The best way to avoid a meter reading dispute is to send us your opening meter readings as soon as you join OVO Energy. You can send them from the day your supply starts, until 5 days later. (just check the emails we’ve sent you for your exact start date.). This makes it easier for us and your old supplier to agree on an accurate reading.

It’s also a good idea to send us your readings regularly – ideally on the last day of your billing period each month. (if you’re not sure when this is, just check the date your charges start and end on your last bill). So if your billing period runs from 16 July – 15 August, 15 August is the ideal day to send us your reading. This keeps your bills spot on, so you pay the right amount for the energy you’re using. To submit your meter readings, log into your online account or check what other ways you can send us your meter readings.

Why have you opened my energy account with estimated readings?

Sometimes we can’t set up an energy account with the opening meter readings. There are a couple of reasons why this might happen:

  1. We need to confirm your opening meter readings within 5 days of switching your supply. If we don’t get your meter readings in time, we’ll have to use estimates.
  2. If your meter readings are disputed, we might need to open your energy account with estimates until we can resolve the dispute. 

My smart meter stopped sending readings. What should I do?

First things first, if you have a new smart meter it can take up to 6 weeks after installation to update the meter details on your energy account. Until your new meter is all synced up to your energy account, your online account and billing won't realise we're getting readings. We’ll make sure to sync things up our side – you don’t need to do anything to get it sorted. 

If that’s not the case, we have a dedicated help page for this problem. We’ll be doing what we can to get your meter communicating with us again. But if we’re not getting readings from your smart meter we’ll need you to send them manually. If you need help reading your smart meter, see our guide on how to read your meters.

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