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Is there enough space to install a gas smart meter?

  • 28 April 2019
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  • Carbon Cutter*****
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Hi there,

Recent OVO customer, been a long time since I've been one.

I'd like to have smart meters installed, but would appreciate some advice as to whether we have enough room first, because access to the gas meter is a tad limited due to some building work (so I want to know before I book to avoid charges).

We also have quite an old Electricity meter so I figure I will also ask about clearance/room there as well while I'm here

First up, Gas Meter (note, I'll have moved all our stuff out the way!):

 

 

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Gap is 40cm wide so a bit tight. Would rather not have to smash up the under-stairs cupboard right now.

Secondly, electricity meter:

 

 

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This is our electricity meter box. Its a 1930s house so upstairs landing is the location. As you can see, space between the electricity meter and the DNO fuse is not huge 17cm but perhaps its enough?

Any advice most welcome, rather than me booking an appointment and finding out the hard way!

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Best answer by Transparent 29 April 2019, 11:15

Updated on 12/02/21: We’ve made a guide on common engineer job issues and aborts - here

Secure Liberty 100/110 smart meter guide - here

 

SMETS2 smart meter guide - here

 

OVO smart meters explained - here

 

Hi @pheo,

Good questions!

Firstly, have a look at what I've written about my own experience of having Smart Meters installed last month here on this other topic.

The first photo shows my SMETS2 electricity meter which is positioned above the Service Fuse. The meter dimensions are 175mm high x 135mm wide including the Communications Hub and its hinge on the left.

To this you'll need to add space below for the "tails" to exit... I'd have thought another 50mm minimum.

The SMETS2 gas meter dimensions are here. Gas meters don't change much in size because the "smart bit" is basically a module which slots into the main pressure regulating chamber where the earlier dials were sited. Ignore what it says there about the electricity meter because that Topic dates back to the earlier SMETS1 variant.

The gas meter is actually more constrained by the surrounding pipework and the location of an earth-bonding connection. I can't see this level of detail in your photo.

Feel free to clarify anything here!

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Updated on 12/02/21: We’ve made a guide on common engineer job issues and aborts - here

Secure Liberty 100/110 smart meter guide - here

 

SMETS2 smart meter guide - here

 

OVO smart meters explained - here

 

Hi @pheo,

Good questions!

Firstly, have a look at what I've written about my own experience of having Smart Meters installed last month here on this other topic.

The first photo shows my SMETS2 electricity meter which is positioned above the Service Fuse. The meter dimensions are 175mm high x 135mm wide including the Communications Hub and its hinge on the left.

To this you'll need to add space below for the "tails" to exit... I'd have thought another 50mm minimum.

The SMETS2 gas meter dimensions are here. Gas meters don't change much in size because the "smart bit" is basically a module which slots into the main pressure regulating chamber where the earlier dials were sited. Ignore what it says there about the electricity meter because that Topic dates back to the earlier SMETS1 variant.

The gas meter is actually more constrained by the surrounding pipework and the location of an earth-bonding connection. I can't see this level of detail in your photo.

Feel free to clarify anything here!

Thanks @Transparent I have read your thread, very detailed. I think the gas meter will fit easily, its more will the fitter be happy fitting through that access - it is a bit tight, and a bit dark....

RE Electricity meter super helpful, I think it'll just about fit. What a silly system really, having to possibly get the DNO out to adjust the layout to fit a meter which is being installed mandatorily!! The current meter is a pretty huge old dial one as you can see, I had a modern meter in the old house and it was much smaller, so hopefully fine. Will measure up later.

Hopefully if I book an install to both, and then they can only fit the electricity meter, the Ovo Gods will smile kindly on me and not charge for an aborted install.

Or I can get the sledgehammer out to make more room!!
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Yes, @pheo the tight space could well be an issue for fitting the gas meter. Perhaps when you book the installation, you could request that OVO send a Gnome (or in the Westcountry where I live, a "Knocker"). As earth-dwellers of diminished stature, they'd have little difficulty working in a dark cupboard!

I don't think you could be charged any penalty if the gas meter can't be fitted for technical reasons. There's no such mechanism.

The system for getting Smart Meters installed is based on hundreds of detailed specifications and contracts. If you want to catch a glimpse of what's involved, have a look at DCC's website here.

Companies involved in this work are taking on quite a high level of risk. There are many houses where the meters and electrical wiring look like something from Dickensian times. So it's important that everyone keeps to the areas of responsibility they are contractually-obliged to fulfil. Meter Installers are the only category of 3rd party engineer who is authorised and qualified to work inside the bounds of the DNOs realm!

I don't know whereabouts you live (please fill out your Forum profile), but I get on very well with my DNO, Western Power. They only start muttering about money if someone tries to "bend the rules". If I contact them and ask for assistance, they couldn't be more helpful. I have never been charged for any work they done for me. Their overriding concern is safety... which is reassuring!
Thanks Transparent, most helpful - I think I'll attempt to book the install and see how we go! I'm in the South East so its UK Power Networks for Electricity, not sure who does Gas here!
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It's could be Southern Gas Networks or National Grid who are responsible for gas supplies in your area of South-East England, @pheo . Have a look at the explanation of the UK gas distribution system and the map on this page here.

Southern Gas Networks have a page here about what to do if your meter does need relocating.

Userlevel 1

@Transparent the gas regions page has changed/moved https://theswitch.co.uk/energy/guides/distribution/gas-distribution :nerd:

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Thanks @c_n - well spotted. :slight_smile:

I’ve actually now changed my link to the Gas Distribution Network (GDN) map on the official Ofgem site. It’s not as pretty, but it’s less likely to get moved!

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