Understanding your energy bill

Your energy bill doesn’t have to be confusing, you just need to know what to look for. We’ve put together a simple guide to help you pick out the essential information – such as what tariff you’re on and how much energy you use.

What information will I find on my energy bill?

The energy regulator Ofgem requires that all energy suppliers provide their customers with informative bills, which must include key information about the tariff you’re on and how much energy you use. In addition, they must also give you details of the cheapest tariff they offer.

Here’s an explanation of some of the terminology you might find on your bill:

  • Your account details Shows the name of the account holder and the address the bill is for.
  • Your tariff Tells you the energy plan you’re currently on. Your bill will also tell you whether a cheaper, alternative tariff is available with the same supplier. If you want to check if even cheaper tariffs are available elsewhere, just compare gas and electricity prices with us.
  • Your energy use Energy use is shown in kilowatt hours – shortened to kWh. You’re charged for every kWh you use and your bill will include a breakdown of your consumption by fuel type.
  • The period you’re being billed for This should be shown alongside, or close to, the amount of energy you’ve used.
  • What you owe This is usually on the first page of your bill. If you pay by direct debit, the amount could be a credit or a debit, depending on how much energy you’ve used.
  • Meter reading If you supplied the meter reading used to calculate your bill, there’ll be a ‘C’ or ‘your reading’ by the figure on your bill. If someone came to read the meter, then the figure will be marked ‘actual’. If there’s an ‘E’ or ‘estimated’ next to the figure, then your provider has estimated how much gas or electricity you’ve used. If you think your bill is particularly high, contact your supplier and give them an accurate reading of your meter – it could result in a recalculation.
  • Terms and conditions A summary of any key points in your agreement with your provider, such as whether there are any exit fees should you want to change the tariff you’re on.
  • An estimation of the next 12 months’ cost Based on your current tariff, this is an assumption calculated from your current usage. But if you increase or decrease your energy consumption, then your bills will change accordingly.

What are unique meter numbers?

Your unique meter numbers tell your energy provider exactly where your supply point is located. They’re sometimes written at the bottom of your bill or near your energy consumption.

The MPAN, or metering point administration number, is a unique reference number for your electricity meter. It’s sometimes called a supply number or S number. On your bill, it might be presented in a series of seven small boxes, with a large S in front and two rows of numbers, like this:






0000 0000


The MPRN, or metering point reference number, is used to identify your gas supply point. It’s sometimes called an M number.

If you do decide you want to switch your energy provider, you might need to provide your MPAN and MPRN if your exact meter readings can’t be located during the switching process. 

Understanding your energy bill

Energy providers

Simply click on the logo below for an explanation of that particular provider’s energy bill.

What if I decide to switch energy providers?

That’s easy. Just have your bill to hand and start a quote with us. You’ll need to answer a few questions, then we’ll provide you with a list of energy deals that suit your needs. 

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