How to read your smart meter

With 21.5 million smart meters now installed in UK homes and small businesses*, many people no longer have to worry about reading their gas and electricity meters. But there may be times when you’ll need to manually read them yourself. Here’s how to do it.

With 21.5 million smart meters now installed in UK homes and small businesses*, many people no longer have to worry about reading their gas and electricity meters. But there may be times when you’ll need to manually read them yourself. Here’s how to do it.

Peter Earl
From the Energy team
5
minute read
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Posted 4 JANUARY 2021

Where is my smart meter located?

First things first, you need to know where your smart meter is to read it. That might be stating the obvious, but it’s surprising just how many people don’t know where their gas and electricity meters actually are.

A smart meter is attached to a wall, with pipes or wires leading from it. It’s usually in the kitchen, under the stairs or outside in a meter box in the same place as your old meters were.

It shouldn’t be confused with your in-home display. This is a handheld device you get with a smart meter that lets you know how much energy you’re using in real-time.

Read our guide to smart meters.

Why take a smart meter reading?

Smart meters automatically send regular readings to your energy supplier. This means you won’t normally have to provide them with the figures yourself. However, there are instances when you might need – or want – to manually read your own smart meters. For example:

  • You’ve switched energy suppliers and your smart meter isn’t compatible with your new provider’s systems. This shouldn’t happen if you have a second-generation smart meter installed.
  • The smart reader is faulty or the mobile signal that sends readings to your energy provider has failed. Reading the meter can prevent you being charged more by your supplier.

  • You want to keep a closer eye on your energy use by comparing how much gas and electricity you get through across the day, week or month. This can help with planning household budgets.

How to read a smart gas meter

All smart meters have an LCD display and a way of operating the device.

The most common way of reading a meter is with a keypad, but you may have a slightly different system in your home.

Your gas reading will be a number followed by ‘M3’. You should ignore the numbers after the decimal place. For example, if you see the number 00362.334, your reading is 362.

How to read a smart gas meter… with a keypad

  1. Press 9 on the keypad
  2. The word VOLUME should appear on the screen
  3. You’ll then see a row of digits followed by M3 in the bottom right
  4. These digits are your meter reading

How to read a smart gas meter… with A and B buttons

  1. Press the A button
  2. Keep pressing it until you get to METER INDEX
  3. The digits you see are your meter reading

How to read a smart gas meter… with a circle button and arrows

  1. Press the circle button in the middle
  2. Your screen will show ‘current meter reading’ at the to
  3. The row of digits followed by M3 is your meter reading

How to read a gas smart meter… with three square red buttons

  1. Press the button on the left – it may be labelled A
  2. You’ll see a string of digits followed by M3
  3. This is your meter reading

How to read a gas smart meter… with orange and blue arrows

  1. Press the orange arrow
  2. The display will show a series of digits followed by M3
  3. This is your meter reading

How to read a smart electric meter

Your electricity usage is measured in kilowatt hours (kWh), so this is what you’ll need to look out for when you take an electric meter reading. Like with a gas meter, you should ignore the digits after the decimal point.

How to read a smart electric meter… with a keypad

  1. Press 9 on the keypad
  2. The letters IMP KWH will appear on the screen
  3. You’ll then see eight digits followed by kWh at the bottom right of the screen
  4. These digits are your meter reading

How to read a smart electric meter… with two buttons

  1. Press the Display or Display Select button
  2. The display screen will then scroll through to the meter reading
  3. Look for a series of digits followed by kWh
  4. This number is your meter reading

How to read a smart electric meter… with A and B buttons

  1. Press the A button
  2. Keep pressing it until you get to TOTAL ACT IMPORT
  3. The number shown is your meter reading

How to read a smart electric meter… with three buttons

  1. Press the middle button
  2. Your meter reading will be shown below IMP on the screen

How to read a smart electric meter… with orange and blue buttons

  1. Press the orange button on the left of the meter
  2. You’ll see a row of numbers followed by kWh
  3. These digits are your electricity meter reading

How to read an Economy 7 smart meter

An Economy 7 meter records how much energy you use during both the daytime and overnight.

  1. Press 6 on the keypad
  2. Keep pressing it until you see the letters IMP R01 followed by eight digits. This is normally your night/off-peak reading
  3. Press 6 again until you see IMP R02 followed by eight digits. This is usually your peak/normal reading


*Correct as of June 2020

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