Electricity & Gas FAQs

Are you worried about your rising energy bill? Want to save money but don't know where to start? It can definitely seem like a minefield. You might even be put off even before you begin.

But don't let it beat you! Read through our glossary or these common questions and answers and you'll be all clued up, ready to switch and save.

I have no idea if I pay too much for my energy, how can I find out?

You don't need to become an expert, you don't even need to spend much energy – electrical or mental! This is where we come in. You just need to give us some basic information about your home and your utility bill and we can work out the rest.

Just click here and we’ll show you all the relevant energy deals, with the cheapest at the top of the page. There are plenty of handy hints to help you understand each one. All you need to do is choose the best deal for you and either click through to the supplier’s website or give them a call.

So I don't have to tell my old supplier that I'm switching?

Nope, the new supplier will do all that for you.

How many times can I swap providers?

There’s no limit on switching suppliers, but it may only be worth it if you stand to save a fair bit of money or are dissatisfied with the customer service. Some suppliers, especially those offering fixed price deals, might charge you an exit fee if you leave before the end of the contract, so be sure to check that before you switch.

How long does it take to swap providers?

It used to take quite a few weeks to swap providers, but Ofgem took care of that. They managed to get a number of suppliers to shorten the period to around about 17 days. That allows for a 'cooling off period' where you’re allowed to change your mind. Some suppliers do take a little longer. See our switching times page for details of how long your supplier should take.

Do you really save money by turning your appliances off standby?

You most certainly do… to the tune of £30 a year in fact! That’s if you switch them off at the wall instead of leaving them on standby. Changing your shower head to an eco one can save a family of four £167 in water and energy. Other tips worth following include switching off lights in empty rooms, washing full loads instead of smaller ones, and only boiling the amount of water you need. Take a look at our Energy Saving guide to see what else you can do to start saving money.

How else can I save money on my energy bill?

You can save money on your bills just by changing a few things:

  • Pay by direct debit, it can reduce your bill by up to 10%
  • Have a look at dual fuel options. Having both your gas and electricity with the same company can often get you a discount – but make sure you compare against other deals too.
  • Don't rely on estimated bills, read your meter regularly – it will give you a more accurate bill.
  • If you are on a pre-payment meter, swap to a billed one – you may have to pay to have it converted, but you could save in the long run.

My supplier wants to put me on a smart meter, what on earth is that?

From 2016 to 2020 most households will have smart meters installed by their energy company. Smart meters bring a wide range of benefits which can help you save money.

They monitor your household’s energy consumption in real-time so that you are accurately billed for what you use. They can communicate directly with your energy supplier meaning that no one will need to come and read your meter in future.

I don't know who my supplier is, how can I find out?

Take a look at your utility bill – you may get it as a paper bill or by email. If you can't find that just check out who you pay from your bank account – check your online banking or paper statements.