Many residents have had issues with the devices since having them installed, which are meant to provide up to date readings to the provider. If the machine stops functioning properly and enters ‘dumb mode’, readings will have to be sent manually by the resident, who may miss out on important savings on their bills.
Help is at hand from Citizens Advice, with an online tool so people can check that their meter is still working as it should.
Located on the group’s website, the tool tells users what type of smart meter they have in their home and if it’s working in ‘smart mode’.
It can also tell if the meter will work in smart mode after the person has switched supplier.
Users are first asked if they want to check the status of their electricity meter or gas meter.
READ MORE: All the freebies that PIP recipients can claim from the DWP
If a person selects electricity, it then asks for the meter point administration number (MPAN), which can be found on the electricity bill.
This is a 12 or 13 digit number, sometimes called the supply number, with only the figures on the bottom row needed.
The resident is also asked for their postcode.
This data is shared with the data communications company (DCC) to check the status of the smart meter.
To find out about the gas meter, users are asked for the meter point reference number from their gas bill, a 6 to 11 digit number.
For those who do not get a gas bill, the number can be found on the find my supplier service, or by calling the meter number helpline on 0870 608 1524.
Calls to this number cost 7p a minute plus your phone company’s access charge.
Users will again need to provide their postcode, with the data sent to the DCC to determine the status of the meter.
Meters can stop working and go into ‘dumb mode’ for several reasons, including the consumer actively opting out of the scheme.
If a device has stopped suddenly working, the best thing to do is contact the supplier to fix the issue.
Research by Which?, carried out in 2019, found that just 42 percent of consumers who have changed energy suppliers since they got a smart meter have been able to keep the equipment working.
Users stand to save up to £130 a year, according to price comparison site Uswitch.
The group also found that 54 percent of consumers who own a smart meter are using them to keep tabs on their energy usage.
Millions of households across the UK now have smart meters set up, although a person can refuse to have one put in.
In April 2022, the energy price cap increased by £693 for people on default tariffs and £708 for prepayment customers.
This is a cap on energy rates rather than the total price, so the cap does not mean there is a maximum charge for a given day.
Citizens Advice also provides support for people who are struggling to pay their energy bills.