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How do smart meters save energy?

Take control of your energy usage

Smart meters provide incredible insights into how much energy you're using at any given time and can help identify how you might lower your usage and bills.

Your in-home display is your new best friend

Everyone who gets a smart meter installed will be provided with an in-home display (IHD for short).

Your IHD will be the centre of your energy-saving practices. It lets you see when you're using the most energy and can help you establish which appliances may be responsible. With near real-time data, you'll see exactly how much energy you're using. Armed with that information, you can make plans to lower your gas and electricity use.


Educating yourself on your energy usage

With increases in energy prices, many consumers want to monitor how much gas and electricity we use and see if they can lower their usage.

Comparing regular readings from your IHD instead of waiting for the next energy bill allows consumers to make immediate changes. Learning about how we heat, light, work and play in our homes—while we do it—helps us to understand and control how much energy we use.

How your in-home display can help you

When you have a smart meter installed, all the readings are automatically sent via the DCC’s secure network to your energy supplier, ensuring you only pay for the energy you’ve used —not the approximate costs of an estimated bill. Your IHD has two modes, depending on how you pay for your energy.

In credit mode, where you pay your bill at the end of each month or quarterly, it shows your daily use and cost.

In prepay mode, you'll see your available balance for each fuel and how close you are to your next top-up.

Both modes allow you to set budgets to make your spending more effective. They'll also show you when you could take steps to lower your costs.

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Saving energy means making changes to your behaviour

Taking control of your energy use is a great first step. Following energy-saving tips can make also help.

Except by switching, you don't control the tariff your energy supplier sets—but you can change how much energy you use. With a little sensible monitoring and rethinking, you could reduce your energy consumption, and keep bills down.

Visit the Energy Saving Trust and explore their top tips for saving energy around the home.

Set spending goals to save money on your energy bills

Your IHD has the option of setting a budget for your energy usage. While it won't and can't manage your appliances, lights or heating for you, it does provide a daily readout on how you're performing against your goals.

Many models allow you to set alerts that warn you when you're getting close to your limits or when there are sudden increases in consumption and spending.

Visit Smart Energy GB to find out more about how you can use your smart meter to save money.

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In summary

Keeping an eye on your IHD, electricity and gas meters allows each of us to rely less on the national grid and more on our own choices, saving money as we do.

Smart meters, and your ability to monitor them via the IHD, can help you limit gas and electricity usage, and help keep bills down.

A smart meter installation is a significant step forward towards reducing energy use. Switching each standard meter to a smart meter should be a priority for anyone looking to lower their carbon footprint, reduce their energy usage, and save on their bills.