Millions of UK households urged to take meter readings to avoid overcharging

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Why it's important to take a meter reading

MILLIONS of households in the UK have just under two weeks to take meter readings to avoid being overcharged on their energy bills. Updating your meter reading will ensure that your supplier has a more accurate idea of your usage and can bill you accurately.

Act before the new price cap comes into force

Households are advised to take their meter readings before the new price cap for gas and electricity bills takes effect on October 1. The cap will limit typical annual bills to £1,923 and is expected to result in a £151 decrease in bills for the average household.

Don't rely on estimated usage

Energy suppliers typically rely on regular meter readings to determine the amount to charge customers. Those who do not provide these readings are billed based on estimated usage, which often leads to overcharging. Therefore, it is crucial to learn how to take a meter reading to avoid being overcharged.

How to take a meter reading

If you do not have a smart meter, your energy supplier will require regular readings from your gas and electricity meter. There are several ways to submit your readings, such as text message, phone, online, or through your supplier's app. It is recommended to check with your supplier to see which options are available.

It is also a good idea to take a picture of your meter reading as evidence, in case of any disputes with your supplier in the future.

Taking a reading based on your meter type

The method of taking a meter reading depends on the type of meter you have. Here are the instructions for different meter types:

Electricity meters

Digital electricity meter: Write down the five numbers in black, ignoring the red number. If you are on an Economy 7 or 10 tariff, which offers cheaper electricity at night, take readings from both rows of numbers.

Traditional dial meter: Read the first five dials from left to right, ignoring any red dials. If the pointer is between two numbers, write down the lower figure. If the pointer is directly over a number, write down that number and underline it. If an underlined number is followed by a dial with a pointer between 9 and 0, reduce the underlined number by 1.

Gas meters

Digital metric meter: Write down the first five numbers from left to right.

Digital imperial meter: Note down the four black numbers. Ignore the two red numbers.

Dial gas meter: Follow the same steps as for a dial electricity meter, but do not underline any figures.

By following these instructions and submitting accurate meter readings, you can ensure that you are not overcharged on your energy bills.