Updated on 23/02/21: More info on ‘Radio time switch’ (RTS) meters here
We know Economy 7 meters can be a bit of a faff. What do they do? When should we make best use of them? Are they costly or do they work out cheaper? We're here to answer some of the most commonly asked questions about this type of meter. If you can think of anything that hasn't been addressed, don't hesitate to add it at in the comments!
What are my times?
Generally speaking, the off-peak times will be during the night. Economy 7 meters, which were introduced to work with night storage heaters, would take up electricity from the grid when demand was low (overnight), and pricing could be made cheaper. Common patterns of off-peak time you might see are midnight to 7am or 00:30am to 7.30am.
To confirm your meter’s off peak times, find your Meter Point Administration Number (MPAN) on your online account’s Plan section (near the bottom):
Then use this table below, the MPAN’s first two digits is the ‘Area ID’, far left column. The ‘Off peak’ times are on the column second from the right:
Do the intervals ever change?
Yes! If your meter is controlled by a Timeswitch (which is inside the meter and acts like a clock) the times will move forward one hour during British Summer Time. A midnight to 7am interval would become 1am to 8am. If your meter is controlled by a Teleswitch, a radio signal which controls the meter times, they’ll stay the same during BST. If you have a smart meter, they’ll also move forward an hour during BST in the same way as Timeswitch meters do.
Will it be cheaper for me?
This depends on a lot of things! If you have the storage heaters to go with it, and heat your home using electricity only, then having a two-rate tariff with a cheaper night rate might well work out cheaper. The two rate plan is a lower electricity unit rate for the off-peak hours, and a slightly higher rate during the peak hours.
If you have a gas meter in your home, but you have a two rate meter in the property too - generally speaking it’ll be cheaper to heat your home with gas, rather than opting for a two rate tariff on the electricity.
Can I have a single rate plan?
Absolutely. You can sign up to a single rate tariff and we’ll charge you the same unit rate during both the peak and the off-peak times. We can charge you like this for the duration of your first contract with us, but if you’re planning on keeping a single rate setup for longer than this, we’d advise getting the actual meter changed
Can I change to an anytime meter?
Yep - if you want to swap “like for like” and get a traditional single rate meter with us, we’d need to exchange your meter, we can do this for free, as all smart meter exchanges are free for our customers.
Will it stop me from changing suppliers?
No, having an Economy 7 meter shouldn’t stop you from swapping suppliers. Do make sure you provide this information when you sign up though, or this could cause some hold ups during the change over.
Can I move to OVO with an Economy 10 meter?
Yes, you can switch over to us with an Economy 10 meter, and benefit from our two rate tariff. It’s called the Economy 7 tariff online, but it’s the same thing, with lower off-peak unit rates for the full 10 off-peak hours on your meter.
We don’t install new Economy 10 meters. We fit smart meters which can be set up with a single rate (all day) or a two rate (day and night) economy 7. Get your smart meter booked appointment booked in here.
How do I know which reading is which?
There’ll usually be a letter/symbol next to each reading. This may be a sun and a moon for the day and night times. It can also be L and N for Low and Normal. In this case Low would be the off peak time, or night rate. They may also be labelled as R1 and R2. If you need any help figuring this out, we’re here to help!
Can the readings be the wrong way round?
Occasionally, problems can occur with the two readings. Sometimes, the day/peak reading may be clocking during the night, and the night/off-peak reading can be clocking during the day. This means you may be being charged the higher peak unit rate for your off-peak usage. You can check if they’re the wrong way round by doing a Load Test.
Why are you asking me to provide two readings when I only have one?
This would indicate either you've accidentally signed up for a two rate tariff, or the meter details we've been sent from your previous supplier were incorrect, meaning you've been set up as an Economy 7 customer (with two readings). We can get this corrected for you if you give us a ring on 0330 303 5063.