In general, if you have an old standard meter rather than a new smart meter, we don’t take meter readings – you give them to us. However, we do need to come and take meter readings at your home every now and then, to make sure your meter’s working properly and you’re reading it correctly.
We’re legally required to visit your home every 2 years to take your meter readings, but in fact we try to take them every 6 months.
Meter readings are gathered for us by a company called Lowri Beck. They’ll visit your home to take a reading for the first time in the spring. If you’re out, or if the representative from Lowri Beck can’t access the meter, they’ll come back again in the autumn.
In the meantime, you still need to give us your own meter readings once a month, to make sure we’re billing you as accurately as possible, and to ensure you’re always aware of how much energy you’re using.
If you miss a meter reading, we’ll have to base your statement for that month on estimated readings. This is all right if it just happens occasionally, but if we keep having to use estimated meter readings you may end up with a large debt, because the estimates may be lower than the amount of energy you’re actually using.
On the other hand, the estimated readings might be higher than your actual energy use, so you’ll build up credit. That means your money will be sitting in your OVO account. Of course, it will be earning our 3* OVO Interest Reward (rising to 5% in year 3), but you might have a better use for your money in your bank account.
With a smart meter, we can take meter readings remotely, and it’s up to you to decide how often we take them. When we install your smart meters, we’ll ask you about your ‘data preferences’ – i.e. how often you’d prefer us to collect your data from your meters.
You can choose once a month, once a day, or every half hour. It’s entirely up to you, but we believe there are definite benefits in choosing to let us take meter readings every half hour. It means your bills and statements will always be up to date, and if there are any problems, we can spot them straight away and take steps to put them right.