To be or not to be… smart

Smart meters are great – for both you and the planet – but here are some of the pros and cons and a few questions we frequently get asked:

What are the benefits?

  • Accurate bills: You’ll receive bills based on your actual usage – no more estimated bills!
  • Save time: Your readings will be sent to us automatically – no more time taken reading your meter/sending us the reading.
  • Doing your bit to save the planet: smart meters help us to see how much energy is used and when, so we can generate the energy we need at the right time using more renewable energy and reduce carbon emissions.
  • Energy insights: By reviewing your usage you can identify where you can make energy savings in your business.

And we’ll install a smart meter for free!

What are the downsides?

  • Downtime: To install your new smart meter, we’ll need to turn off your energy supply for up to an hour (it’s usually much less). We’ll arrange a suitable appointment date/time with you to minimise any disruption to your business.
  • Catch-up bill: If we haven’t had a meter read from you in a while, your first smart read might result in a catch-up bill if you’ve used more energy than you’ve been billed for. We’re here to help so give one of our advisors a call on 0161 946 4444 if you’re concerned.

We think you’ll agree that the benefits outweigh the downsides. But don’t just take our word for it – read more about how smart metering is a smart choice here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Smart Meters

In 2019, Parliament passed laws requiring the government to reduce the UK’s net emissions of greenhouse gases by 100% relative to 1990 levels by 2050 – this is the “net zero” target you’ll have heard about. Smart meters are a key part of the changes we need to make in energy usage to achieve that target. The accurate near-real time data smart meters produce will enable our energy system to better able to respond to change in energy demands. It will also mean our energy system is more efficient, making the most of renewable sources and relying less on fossil fuels.

It’s an electronic device installed in your premises that automatically sends information about your energy usage to your supplier.

No. Your smart meter will send reads via existing mobile or radio signals in your area.

For the vast majority, installing a smart meter is free. There may occasionally be costs for installation of a gas smart meter but we’ll let you know in advance so you can decide whether you’re happy to proceed.

No, but there are lots of great reasons why you should! As a green electricity provider, we’re supporting the Government’s net zero plan. Smart metering plays a large part in this.

If your meter needs to be replaced, we’ll install a smart meter – standard meters are no longer manufactured.

No. If you only have one supply with us, we can still install a smart meter.

If you pay the energy bills, you can have a smart meter but we suggest you let your landlord know in advance and check the terms of your tenancy agreement.

Occasionally we can’t install a smart meter but this is rare. We’ll check in advance whether we can install a smart meter and let you know.

Yes! We protect any customer data we collect and only use it for limited purposes. Here’s our privacy policy.

No. Smart meters do not record, collect or store any personal data – they only store data on the energy you use. This data can be used in two ways:

  1. To bill you accurately for your usage;
  2. To allow you and your supplier to see when you use energy. This helps you to identify potential energy savings and allows us to meet supply and demand.

No, that’s not correct. Smart meters are covered under UK and EU product safety legislation and are safe. They’re installed and maintained by fully qualified professionals.

Whilst smart meters do emit radio waves, so do other popular products found in homes and businesses. You’ll get less exposure to radio waves from your smart meter than from your mobile phone. Government information about smart meters and health can be found here.

No, that’s not correct for the latest generation of smart meters (though it was true for the first generation of smart meters).

It’s great that you’re interested in having a smart meter. Call us on 0161 946 4444 or email info@switchingon.comto register your interest and, subject to eligibility checks, we’ll pass on your information to our smart meter installer. They’ll contact you to arrange an appointment.

Not a problem. Please contact Energy Assests on 01506 405445 and they’ll rearrange the appointment for you. For all other queries relating to smart meters, please give us a call on 0161 946 4444.

A qualified engineer will attend your premises and after introducing themselves, will complete a site inspection and install your smart meter. After installation, the engineer will show you how to use the meter and answer any questions you might have.

There can be a short delay between installation and us receiving the automated readings. Sometimes we’ll also ask for meter readings to check that your meter is working correctly. We might arrange for a meter reader to attend to check the readings/meter or to complete maintenance work.


  • Your bill was finalised before your smart meter was installed and your next bill should be based on actual usage; or
  • We haven’t been able to get a read because the signal was interrupted. If this continues, please give us a call so that we can investigate.

What happens now?