What is an electricity meter?

24th Feb 2022 | Online Energy | 4 minute read

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Electricity meters have been around for a long time, but now there are many options on what type of meter you use. Newer models not only send accurate readings to your supplier, but you can also use the reading yourself if you wanted to reduce usage.

An electricity meter or electric meter is a device that measures the amount of energy a building uses. The readings on these meters will tell your energy supplier your usage which they will base your bills on. Your electricity meter will be read at least once each billing period. They are calibrated in kWh if you want to know more about kWh read here.


Why is it important to read my electricity meter?

Reading your electricity meter and understanding the reading can help you discover exactly what your electricity provider is charging you for. For example, you can work out how much electricity you are using and how much this is costing. You can also provide regular meter readings for your electricity supplier to make sure that they are not overcharging you. Another reason you should be able to understand your electricity meter is that you will be able to see accurate figures when it comes to comparing energy suppliers.


What different types of electricity meters are there?

There are many different electricity meters for business which one you will have for your business will depend on the size of the business and how much electricity is used. Below we will go through the most common electric meter types and how they could benefit your business.

  • Half hourly meter- this type of electricity meter takes a reading of your energy demand every half hour. This information can then be sent to your electricity supplier, so they know when and how much energy you are using. If you are not sure whether your electricity meter is half hourly, then check the supply number. If the supply number begins with “00” then the meter is half hourly. Half hourly meters are required for businesses with more than 100kW demand. This type of meter is more appropriate for bigger businesses
  • Standard meter- this is the most popular business meter; one rate means that there is only a single price and measurement period. You will only have one tariff related to all your usage which makes pricing straight forward. You will be able to identify a standard meter if the supply number begins with “03
  • Economy 7 – This is a two-rate meter. One rate is used to measure your usage throughout the day this is charged at a higher rate and a lower rate throughout the night. The Economy 7 rate is charged throughout the night usually between the hours of 11pm-8am. You can identify this meter if the supply number begins with “04”.


How to read an electric meter

If you have a digital meter, then all you will need is the numbers from left to right. If you have a two-rate meter, then you will usually have two displays of numbers. You will read these numbers the same. one set for numbers will be for the off-peak readings and one for the normal readings.

If you have a dial meter, then you will need to read these numbers from left to right again. You will need to know what number each dial is on. If they are in between two numbers, then you should always choose the lower one.


Smart electricity meters

A smart electricity meter works by sending meter readings to your supplier. This newer type of meter reading allows you to receive more accurate bills.  You will only be charged for the energy you have used, and your supplier can get a more accurate picture of how much electricity you have used.

Smart Meters can be beneficial to your business as you can use your electric smart meter reading to gain greater insight into your energy usage. Smart meters can help you reach energy goals you may have in your company. Installing a smart meter can help your business become more energy efficient and reduce company costs.

If you are wondering how to read a smart electric meter, you do not really need to as the information gets sent directly to your energy supplier. However, you can also use a smart meter to measure your usage easily. To read your specific smart meter you are best looking at your specific user manual as each smart meter functions differently.


Switch electricity suppliers

If you are ready to switch electricity suppliers then we can help compare suppliers for your business electricity needs today. If you do not know how to switch electricity suppliers that is okay just use our price comparison tool. From here our energy experts will compare business electricity rates to make sure you are on the best electricity tariff for your business.

When switching now you can also make sure you are getting the right deal as you will know exactly what type of electricity meter you are on. However, do not worry if your electricity meter is inaccessible to you as we can always find this out for you.

In conclusion understanding, your electricity meter and its reading can be beneficial for regulating your company's spending. It can also help when it comes to switching energy suppliers to understand exactly what you are paying for on your electricity contract.

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