I've had smart meters installed but want to replace my storage heaters with Dimplex Quantum.... any advice?

  • 18 January 2019
  • 5 replies

Hi ,I've had a liberty 110 smart meter installed and I'm thinking of replacing old storage heaters with dimplex quantum
The meter has a 5th terminal for storage heaters ,but is this a 24/7 power supply running alongside economy 7 ?
Any help would be appreciated

Best answer by Transparent 24 January 2019, 20:25

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Good question @Dancingdave and welcome to the forum.

I'm going to give @Transparent a shot at this one, to see if he can help at all.......hopefully he'll be able to give us a straight forward answer (otherwise I won't understand it!) that might be helpful for you and others with a similar question!

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Updated on 09/05/22 by Jess_OVO


 ​​​​Great to hear about the planned improvements to your heating system. If you’re thinking of buying new storage heaters, this handy guide might be a good place to start.

In terms of how these would work in conjunction with you Secure Liberty smart meter, you’re right that these would be controlled via the fifth port terminal. The fifth port terminal is switched on during the off-peak times scheduled on your meter so isn’t active 24/7.

If you have a smart meter installed by OVO the off-peak times can be worked out using your Meter Point Administration Number (MPAN). You can find your MPAN on the ‘Plan’ page of your online account or OVO app (download for Android or iOS):


MPAN is shown at the bottom of the electricity column


Then use this table below; the first two digits of your MPAN is the ‘Area ID’; the ‘Off peak’ times are on the column second from the right.



Please be advised that SecureAclara and Honeywell smart meters don't adjust for BST so during summer your off peak times will be an hour later than advised above. 

This isn’t to say you can only use the storage heaters during this time, your meter will also have a ‘boost’ function allowing the fifth terminal to be used at peak times for your peak usage rates. Find out more about using this ‘boost’ function on this related topic.

Hope this helps decide the best heating option for you.


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Many thanks for all the excellent info .ive read that the quantums need peak and off_peak supplies as the controller needs power but i dont want the rads to use peak electricity as its expensive
Do you know if its possible to operate the rads with just economy 7 ?
If the rads needed a 24/7 supply it would be tricky to run a cable to it
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Ah, this is the knub of the issue, @Dancingdave. Currently I am only aware of this Storage Rad operating in a relatively primitive mode. I don't know if it's yet available as a fully-functional product.... which must include two obscure pieces of the jigsaw:
_______a. Vcharge software control
_______b. Time-Of-Use (TOU) tariff

and in future should also incorporate:
_______c. Auxilliary Load Control Switch (ALCS)
_______d. SMETS2 meter control protocols

As I understand it, the "test sites" operate like this:

You will notice blue aerial symbol on the Storage Radiator links to your WiFi. And I believe that the temperature/time parameters get set up by OVO rather than being selectable on the IHD.

The Storage Radiator is physically fed by the house mains supply (not Economy-7). But if Vcharge switches it on, this information gets fed to OVO's billing computer, which charges you a lower price per kWh.

It's entirely up to OVO's contractual arrangements with the Energy Producers and your regional DNO as to how that lower cost is deliverable. The customer doesn't need to know this.

But, controlling any part of the UK energy supply system using the internet is fraught with danger. Ofgem have designed/approved an alternative communications pathway using encrypted signals on the mobile phone network (red aerial symbols) and an intermediary called the Data Communications Company (DCC).

So the way this Storage Radiator should operate looks like this:

The differences are subtle, but important.

As before, the Storage Radiator is fed by the standard mains feed for the house (not E7). However, it no longer has a WiFi transceiver, but instead connects to your SMETS2 Smart Meter using Zigbee. In the above diagrams Zigbee uses green aerial symbols, and is already employed for short-range communications with your IHD.

SMETS2 meters have 5 or more channels called Auxiliary Load Control Switches (ALCS) which allows secure communications within the home to control domestic apparatus.

Once again it is VCharge which issues the signals, but now they are transferred to you via the much more secure encrypted route managed by DCC.

None of this will work at all unless there is some implementation of a TOU tariff. And I don't think OVO yet offer one. That's why I suspect the Birmingham site is effectively a test installation, offered under a special contract to a third-party.

I remain mystified as to why you have had a Liberty 110 Smart Meter installed. Up until yesterday I was unaware that a 5-terminal Smart Meter was available. Nor can I imagine why OVO would need to install them... unless for some reason they wish to avoid using ALCS.

That's why I've tagged @Darran_OVO to see if anyone at OVO could oblige us with an explanation.
Many thanks again .ive only started using ovo for electricity and they fitted the meter so we didnt have to ring in the meter readings which we had to do with npower