F.A.Q.

SMETS1 DCC Communication Update FAQ - DIY tutorial series

  • 16 December 2020
  • 9 replies
  • 3415 views
SMETS1 DCC Communication Update FAQ - DIY tutorial series
Userlevel 7

Updated on 05/05/21

 

Getting your S1 smart meter onto DCC - your guide

 

When you switch suppliers with SMETS1 meters, we can't always communicate with your meters. Take a look at SMEST1 meters we can communicate with for more information. 

What is this update?


It's a nationwide update to SMETS1 meters to make them automatically send readings if they had stopped communicating due to a change of supplier. The process it goes through is Enrollment & Adoption (E&A) after which both S1 and S2 meters are controlled/managed by the DCC.


Why do these smart meters need to be updated?


To get the full benefits of smart meters, the government has decided that there should be one new unified smart meter data network. This makes smart meters work more effectively with all energy suppliers, improving the efficiency of the grid and helping us all to cut carbon emissions.

Once your SMETS1 smart meter has been updated to this single network, you’ll also be able to switch suppliers without your meter losing its smart features. Smart meters automatically send meter readings to your energy supplier. This means your bills are more accurate, and you can see how much energy you’re using online – or on your In-Home Display (IHD)

Until your meters have fully gone through the E&A process, they will become dormant. Therefore, you’ll need to provide readings to make sure you receive accurate bills. 

What timescales to expect for my meters to be enrolled?


This table shows the expected delivery date depending on the Meter Manufacturer. 

 

Meter Manufacturer MSN format Fuel Expected migration to Smart

Secure

YYP Electric

Started January 2021. Expected completion March 2022.

  G4P Gas  

Elster

YYK Electric

Already started. Planned completion October 2021

  G4K Gas  

Aclara

YYM Electric

Already started. Planned completion October 2021

  G4F Gas  

Itron

YYS Electric

Already started. Planned completion October 2021

  G4 Gas  

L+G

YYL

Electric

Started May 2021. Expected completion September 2022.

  ZYYQ    
  ZYYN    
  E6S Gas  




How can I easily identify if the meter is Secure?


Secure Electric Meter Serial Numbers will start with XXP (eg 18P) and Gas Meter Serial Numbers will start with G4P. You can find the Meter Serial number on the front of your meters.

Can a S1 Secure meter go through E&A with no signal?


The short answer to this is no. A S1 Secure meter must be in communication with us in order for OVO to migrate the meter. Check to see if your meter has WAN here

Will any communications be sent to advise me on the progress?


The Data Communications Company (DCC) is updating SMETS1 meters in batches, we receive notification of which accounts will be updated 15 days in advance which gives us time to send an email or letter to our members to let them know. This includes a data protection statement for obtaining and using their meter readings and to get a response from our members.

 

If this update is successful then we will send them another email or letter to let them know. If it is unsuccessful we will let them know and the DCC will try and update the account again - we'll let them know if and when the update is successful. We unfortunately have no control over who gets upgraded and who doesn't, this is decided by the DCC.

 

Who’s responsible for the update?

 

The DCC (Data Communications Company) is a government appointed company who are responsible for maintaining the communications of smart meters for the entire country. Their data network will allow member's smart meters to remain smart if they switch energy suppliers.

 

What happens if the update doesn’t work? 


The DCC will try to fix the issue again. They might try several times, for up to 12 months, until it works – and we'll let you know when that happens. If the DCC can’t complete the update, we'll contact you to get a new (SMETS2) smart meter installed.



Can all meters go through E&A?

 

There'll be some meters that cannot go through E&A and will need replacing such as older EDMI meters. DCC publish their lists on what model combinations will be eligible as they complete their testing. Most testing for Aclara, Elster, Itron and Secure has been completed and we are working our way through the migrations of those meters.

Are there any Exceptions?


There will be many scenarios where the process is not so straightforward. All exceptions are under review currently.

Is the update optional?


This update isn’t optional because all SMETS1 meters need to be updated and connected to the Data Communications Company (DCC) by September 2022. It’s a government initiative so everyone has to do it – not just OVO members.

 

What have we missed? Comment below. 

 

OVO member but not got a smart meter yet? - Book today!

 

Interested but not yet an OVO member? - Check out our plans!

 


9 replies

Userlevel 1

How is this handled if you have moved away from OVO?

Userlevel 7
Badge +4

Good morning @Russell ,

I can answer that one for you as someone who moved to OVO while my own meter was still in a completely SMETS1 state. While I moved from SSE to OVO prior to my upgrade starting, the answer should be valid for almost any combination of old and new supplier. It’s also valid across all the brands that offered SMETS1 meters which are being migrated.

In the event that you had SMETS1 meters installed by an old supplier and switched away prior to the upgrade, in most cases the upgrade is still possible. The process is still mostly similar to what it would be if you were still with the original supplier, except that the old supplier will be involved for the early stages by doing some of the work in the background. You won’t need to contact the old supplier - they’ll know what to do.

In my case, I switched from SSE to OVO back in October and my Aclara SGM1311 was still on SMETS1 firmware at the time, meaning it went dormant initially. A couple of weeks later, OVO confirmed that my meter was ready to be upgraded and re-activated, for which I knew this meant it was getting the SMETS2 upgrade. I didn’t need to contact SSE at all to get the ball rolling.

The only task that SSE were involved with, was to basically hand over control to DCC and then withdraw their involvement. Once a particular smart meter has been transferred to DCC and is on the National Smart Meter Network, the rest of the process simply carries on as usual from there.

Userlevel 1

@blastoise186 Thanks for your interesting and helpful reply.

I moved from OVO to Yorkshire Energy who, as far as I can tell, did not support any type of smart meter. Subsequently Yorkshire Energy went bust and I am being moved to Scottish Power. They have informed me that they cannot support my OVO Secure SMETS1 meter so it will remain dumb.

From your reply I understand that the upgrade will be done via the OVO Wide Area Network (WAN).  OVO are effectively a passive caretaker for my Secure SMETS1 meter.

I am wondering how far OVO’s passive role in managing my meter extends.  For instance, if the meter developed a fault that potentially could be fixed remotely via the OVO WAN would Scottish Power contact OVO to do so?

Part of the process, once the meter has been upgraded to SMETS2, is to switch communications from the OVO WAN to the DCC WAN. I wonder if there is a risk that this could go wrong so that the meter could no longer communicate via the OVO WAN or DCC WAN! Effectively the meter would become isolated with no chance of fixing remotely.

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

Hi @Russell - just have a look at the explanations I wrote about the SMETS1 upgrade issue a couple of days ago. Read to the end of that Topic because you’ll notice that the Moderator @Tim_OVO posted a time-scale which I’m disputing(!).

There is a small risk that a site could be left isolated in the upgrade/migration process fails. Two others have posted on the Forum about that. However, in both cases the site was resurrected without a site visit. So I don’t think it’s worthwhile worrying about that possibility.

Userlevel 1

Hi,

Is the SMETS1 meter upgrade on programme?  I note it should now be done by July 2021.   Will I be contacted when they do it?

Userlevel 7
Badge +4

Hiya @TWSaab !

Yup, it should be on track. If you’d like me to, I can check to see whether your meter is in the current group. If you could take some snaps of your meters and pop them in your next reply, I’ll be able to check. :)

You should also be contacted when the process is about to start and once it’s done too.

Userlevel 1

Hi,

Thanks for the quick response.   

My meters are ‘Secure’ installed by OVO some years ago.   Gas is difficult to get at as they moved it deep under the stairs when it was renewed, hence the need for smart metering!  (Excuse the grandchildrens toys around it).

Userlevel 7
Badge +4

Thanks @TWSaab !

Yup. I can confirm that you’ve got SMETS1 hardware there. Your Secure Liberty 100 electric meter and Secure Liberty Eg4v11 gas meter should be in the current group for migration, and it is indeed expected to be fully migrated to DCC by the end of July this year. You may see it lose comms during the process, but this is to be expected. Don’t worry if that happens, comms will be restored once the migration is done.

Userlevel 1

OK, thank you.

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