Solved

What to do if the engineer fitting smart meter needs wires moved in my meter cupboard before install?

  • 17 November 2019
  • 16 replies
  • 871 views

OVO fitter has been twice to fit as Smart Meter ( which I really want to have! ). The staff they send are not qualified to move wires in my meter cupboard ( electricians ??? ). Even when I offered to move the wires myself they refused to cooperate. I want a smart meter, the reason I cannot have one is has little logic. OVO just say impossible, but if they will not do it, I need someone to call and explain what needs doing so that I can prepare the site for them, or employ a qualified electrician to do it.

Now, OVO tell me that they will charge me if I ring them and yet they are failing to help me  achieve what they want me to do.. Catch 22. 

Do OVO monitor this website; will someone get in touch??? I hope so.

icon

Best answer by Tim_OVO 18 November 2019, 15:52

Great to see two of our superusers stepping in to help - this is what it’s all about!

 

@threepinplug I know from first hand experience (when I spent a day with an OVO Field Force Engineer) that the energy supplier engineer has limited permissions. 

 

Some things need work to be done by the Distribution Network Operator (DNO) if it’s related to the main fuse (aka cut out) or the cable going into it from the mains. Agree with this @PeterR1947 @Transparent ? 

 

A picture would be v handy! 

View original

16 replies

Userlevel 6
Badge +1

@threepinplug  is it possible to add a picture here so we can see what the problem is and maybe how to resolve it?

Away at the moment, will send photo on our return to the United (?) Kingdom, in about a week . Regards.

Userlevel 7
Badge +3

Hey @threepinplug - did you say OVO suggested something was impossible?!

Great… that’s what we’re here for on the Forum. Bring it on!

And please fill out your Forum profile. Our answers might differ according to details like whereabouts you live.

And finally, did you find a source of Meter Box doors on that other Topic back-along?

If not, have a look at this BES page showing a standard-sized door for an external gas-meter box at less that £15.

Userlevel 7
Badge +2

Great to see two of our superusers stepping in to help - this is what it’s all about!

 

@threepinplug I know from first hand experience (when I spent a day with an OVO Field Force Engineer) that the energy supplier engineer has limited permissions. 

 

Some things need work to be done by the Distribution Network Operator (DNO) if it’s related to the main fuse (aka cut out) or the cable going into it from the mains. Agree with this @PeterR1947 @Transparent ? 

 

A picture would be v handy! 

Userlevel 7
Badge +3

Yes @Tim_OVO that’s true.

But Peter and I know which bits of installation and alteration work can be undertaken by the relevant parties. There is some overlap.

So once @threepinplug gives us a photo to look at, we can make an informed decision and advise accordingly.

 

And, on a technical note @threepinplug, when you upload photos, please note that the width of this Forum is about 800 pixels. So if you have the means to reduce a photo to somewhere around that resolution, then it’ll fit just fine. Don’t worry if you can’t achieve that however.

 

And @Tim_OVO - you really need to spend a day with me. I’d be able to take you right through from investigating Smart Meter issues to seeing a hydro-electric plant and how a sub-station operates. :relaxed:

Userlevel 7
Badge +2

Sounds brilliant, @Transparent - maybe at some point next year we can do a community day out. Smart meter troubleshooting in the morning, on site energy generation and sub station visits in the afternoon…… finish with tea and scones… I think we’re onto something here!

 

Anyway for now, threepinplug, send over that photo so these two can advise :nerd:

Userlevel 6
Badge +1

@Transparent@Tim_OVO I keep away from substations whereever possible!  One of my monthly meter reading rounds was reading meters in substations; most of them dated from the 1900s and I saw (and reported) many dangerous things including one where the back wall leaned out at the top, there was a four inch gap through which the sky was visible.  One modern one (one of the few)  I visited ran at 200% of maximum demand during the day - that was the fastest meter read ever!

Userlevel 7
Badge +3

Overloaded sub-stations are being tackled by [color=#3070c0]DNOs[/color] under the RIIO1-ED1 agreement with [color=#6060b0]Ofgem[/color]. They are a significant contributor to losses on the Distribution Grid.

Over the last 12 months, [color=#3070c0]Western Power[/color] have been running a Commercial Trial within the [color=#D08030]OpenLV Program[/color] to overcome this. An overloaded sub-station and an adjacent one with spare capacity are both equipped with LV-CAP monitoring systems. This informs a control system when it would be advantageous to energize contactors to share the loads on Feeds or Phases between the two transformers.

This Meshing Trial has been deployed across 20 sites, one of which is 5 miles from where I live… a notoriously constrained part of the Distribution Grid.

The Trial has now been completed and I need to find someone in [color=#3070c0]WPD[/color] who’d be willing to share the results with me.

As I said I will send a photo when I return to the the ( Dis ) United Kingdom next week.

Tim, whoever you are. No, it is not about about your ‘ super users ‘ responding, it is about OVO responding and giving me a proper service. If they cannot fit the smart meter they  want me to have then they should respond with help and advice, not me having to faff about with this publicity stunt of yours. Tim, please get OVO to respond, then I will be properly served by my  energy supplier.

( All this in the nicest possible way, of course. ) 

A down to Earth, Three Pin Plug.

Userlevel 7
Badge +2

Tim, please get OVO to respond

 

I totally understand you wanting this sorted @threepinplug - sorry for losing focus above :)

 

Your best bet is to get some advice from engineers (or former engineers) here, or to reach out to our Care team via email. I would suggest a photo would be ideal either way: hello@ovoenergy.com is the address to use. If you reach out to us directly (this forum is for members to help each other) you’ll get a response within 48 hours. I’d recommend asking for the photo to be looked at by a specialist, or even the engineer company. All this can be requested via the one email. Sorry that I can’t forward this on for you. 

 

Alternatively, post the picture here and someone else can advise.

 

Tim

Thanks for your understanding reply to my grumpy email!. Here is a photo of the ‘offending’ meter cupboard.  Threepinplug

 

Userlevel 7
Badge +3

Thanks for the photo @threepinplug This is just the detail we need.

[color=#009030]OVO[/color] themselves are somewhat constrained in what they can state about electrical works which fall outside their remit (as yours does). But @PeterR1947 and I are free agents because we’re customers, not employees!

Firstly this meter-board will need the services of a local electrician to make alterations. It requires temporarily removing the 100A Service Fuse. The electrician will liaise with your [color=#3070c0]DNO[/color] so that they can arrive just as his/her work is completed, and refit the seal.

Visually it looks like the cables within the white 40mm square trunking require re-routing to make space for the new [color=#A00080]Smart Meter[/color]. But before I comment further, could you please measure the horizontal distance between the black service fuse and the Hager Consumer Unit?

The electricity [color=#A00080]Smart Meter[/color] (known as ESME) is 130mm across. So we need to check if it will fit in that space.

Thanks.

Userlevel 7
Badge +3

What progress @threepinplug ?

I’ve put a bit more thought into this. There’s an alternative layout worth consideration

with apologies for the very poor mock-up !

This not only leaves room for the Smart Meter below the two consumer units, but also eliminates the 50x25mm plastic trunking which takes cables out of that Hager box.

If it was my house, and I was paying an electrician to work on this, I’d actually go the whole hog and replace both consumer units with a single larger one at the top of the cabinet. This would be a metal-clad box, bringing it up to the current regulations. You’d also get rcd protection to prevent fire and death…. always a useful bonus!

New consumer units are cheaper to buy if sold with an assortment of trips you’re likely to need. Here’s a sample of what I’ve just looked up on the website for TLC-Direct

 

Thanks for this, it looks like a good idea, I was planning to update the old fuse box once before but the electrician never turned up. 

Regards, Three-pin plug ( soon with rcd protection )

Userlevel 6
Badge +1

Good suggestion @Transparent  a new metal consumer unit is an excellent idea @threepinplug I would go for that too if it was my house

Reply