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Why are the usage light indicators on my SSE Smart Energy Tracker not accurate since moving to OVO?

  • 26 December 2021
  • 10 replies
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Hi. During this month (December 2021) have had my gas & electricity accounts transferred from SSE to Ovo. I have smart meters for both supplies, which I have had for several years, and an In House Display in the hallway, roughly 6 feet from both meters. Prior to the transfer, the IHD regularly and correctly switched through its colour sequences - green, orange & red - in accordance with the energy usage at the time. However, since the transfer it is now displaying a red light almost all the time, even when high energy appliances are not in use. Even with most items turned off and the central heating not running, it displays an orange light where before it would have been green. I have also noted that the tariffs shown on the IHD do not match my actual tariff and are much higher per unit. I have tried rebooting the IHD but it has made no difference. Can anyone offer answers to this?

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Best answer by Blastoise186 27 December 2021, 13:22

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Userlevel 7
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Welcome @andymg !

Is that IHD something like the SSE Smart Energy Tracker by any chance? If so, I know it well as I used to have one. I’m planning to give it away to another forum volunteer eventually, so that they can have some fun with it. Just to be sure though, could you post some photos of your Smart Meters and IHD please? It helps to make sure I’m on the right track.

These days, I have two Chameleon IHD6 that OVO gave me (I’m now on a pure SMETS2 setup as OVO also had to replace my meter) and I’ve found them to be a lot more reliable than the SSE SET, but I like to try and suggest solutions that don’t mean throwing stuff away if I can avoid it.

From what I’ve known from experience, S1 IHDs can take ages to reconfigure when you switch supplier, and this includes cases like the SSE to OVO migration. On average, it can take up to six weeks for any Smart Meter to migrate when you switch supplier and it’s been known to knock out certain IHDs for a bit longer than that. There have been cases where the config gets wiped out as well.

Your tariff config should be fixed automatically once your Smart Meters reconnect and your IHD should also pick these up as well at the same time.

Bear with me for a bit, as I need to refresh my memory about a few things. I’ll be back in a bit!

Hello, and thanks for your swift response. I have no idea which model of IHD I have. I can only say I’ve had it for several years. I’m guessing it’s one of the first generation IHDs, as are the smart meters. I can take some photos tomorrow if they will help - how do I upload them to this forum?

Userlevel 7
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No worries! That would be great.

To upload images, you can either copy/paste them straight over, or click the image icon in the editor and select the photo. You can choose to upload several at once as long as each one is under 5mb. Here’s an example of the button you’re after.

If you have trouble uploading, don’t worry as there’s a backup method as well. You can also email the photos over to forum@ovoenergy.com and ask a moderator to attach them to this thread on your behalf.

As far as I’m aware, SSE used the Geo Trio II Touch for SMETS2 IHDs, but had a combination of either the SSE Smart Energy Monitor (with Onzo branding) for earlier S1 installs before switching to the SSE SET for later installs. It was also known for them to use the Aclara SGM1311 for S1 electric meters. But we can definitely double check for you once the photos are up.

Hello again. OK, here are the photos you requested …

First, the electricity meter -

This is the IHD. Note the light is red despite the fact that hardly anything is on ...

 And lastly the gas meter.

I noticed  the safety label on the gas meter is dated Jan 2017 so that must be when the smart meters wre installed. Hope this helps.

Userlevel 7
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Ah yes, that’s perfect. Thanks!

Yup, as I suspected, you do indeed have SMETS1. That IHD is the SSE Smart Energy Tracker that was actually manufactured by STi Electronics )via their STi Philippines subsidiary). Which is a generic electronics prototyping company that doesn’t really specialise in anything. I’ve also seen pretty much the same thing with other branding as well, such as the IHDL SmartView 2 that might seem different, but it’s actually identical to the SSE SET. Probably because it literally is the same product - and it’s taken me three years to finally figure that out!

And those meters being the Elster AS300P and Elster KB-G4E. I’ve got to admit, I’ve not really seen many of these - clearly SSE must have had multiple meter brands in their inventory over the years, as the 2018 install I had used an Aclara SGM1311 electric meter (I don’t have gas). These days, my S2 install is an Aclara SGM1411-B though, which is similar but a lot better.

Based on the photos, it looks like everything is connected to your Home Area Network correctly, so that’s a good sign. However, S1 IHDs are known to misbehave a lot during a Change of Supplier process like this one, and I’m wondering if yours somehow wiped out the config that defines the thresholds for traffic light indicator. Unfortunately, the one I have is dead these days and no longer powers up, so I can’t play with it and I’m having to go from memory.

On the plus side, I’ve managed to grab the original user manual from the archives on SmartMe. Here’s a copy just in case you need one. https://www.smartme.co.uk/documents/energy-your-smart-energy-tracker-all-you-need-to-know.pdf . I’ve spent the night reading through this and a bunch of other stuff and I think I’ve enough confidence to solve this puzzle now.

There’s also this older version as well, which might be a closer match for the one you have. https://www.smartme.co.uk/documents/SSE+IHD+Full+Guide+AUG16+cropped.pdf

Now what I’m thinking here, is that your Daily Targets have been wiped out somehow. If you’re OK with doing this, then the solution should be fairly simple - you can just set them back up again. Head into the menu → Electric → Daily Target → Source → Daily Budget → Set your preferred amount. Then do the same and choose either Save 5%, Save 10%, Save 15%, Custom or Off based on whether you want the device to try and suggest you beat the target or just stay within it. Repeat the same steps for Gas. The user manuals above will give you some suggestions on how to set the budget.

Once the changes have been saved, it may take up to 24 hours for them to apply and fully refresh. Hopefully that should fix the problem. If it doesn’t, let me know and I’ll dig deeper into my resources.

To be totally honest, the IHDL SmartView range of IHDs is absolutely terrible compared to the offerings from Chameleon, Geo and Hildebrand but it’s not easy to replace it with something else as most suppliers won’t just replace them on request, unless it’s faulty. Well, to be fair… Some of the earliest models from those three brands weren’t great either - but at least they massively improved and innovated pretty quickly!

Hello and thanks for this info. I’ve had a go at setting targets, so will now wait a day or two and see how it goes. On entering the set-up process, there were no targets set, so can’t tell if that’s always been the case since day 1 because the fitter didn’t set them up, or if they have been wiped during the account migration. A couple of things that still aren’t right, though, are the account prices. Those shown on the IHD are higher than I actually pay as I’m on a 2-year fixed rate deal, so if the IHD is calculating my daily costs using the tariffs shown within it, it will be providing over-estimations. Why should the prices on the IHD differ from what I actually pay? Surely they should be the same. If not, then the IHD is only any use in monitoring usage via the light colour, but not true daily costs. Your help is appreciated.

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Yeah, that definitely confirms my suspicions. It seems either your IHD had somehow wiped out the config, or the meters have lost the tariff rates during the migration process. This can be fixed though.

For any of the settings you can change on the IHD itself, feel free to go through them and tweak them to your liking. If you can tolerate the terrible menus and buttons for about 10 minutes, you should be able to shoot through everything and get it all back to normal.

As for the tariff rates, yep. Your IHD can only go off of what it knows, so if it’s gone back to defaults then it won’t be accurate right now. However, OVO will be able to reconfigure those for you on the meters, once they’ve fully migrated and reconnected - you’ll start to see Smart readings in MyOVO and on the OVO Energy app once this happens. After that’s done, you can ask the Support Team to issue the SMETS Command Update Tariff Configuration if the meters don’t pick it up automatically somehow - but I’d allow an extra week first just to be sure. That command should fix the tariff rates for the meters and IHD in one go. Hopefully it should fix the issues you’ve had there.

Either way, the actual bills are generated by OVO’s billing platform anyway, so even if the SSE SET is misbehaving, it won’t cause your bills to get out of line with your usage. You might just need to submit meter readings manually for a bit.

I can report that even just resetting the targets has put the IHD light back to green. I then switched on our 3kw kettle and it turned red, turned it off and it went back to green. So that’s what I would expect. As you suggest, I’ll wait until business has returned to normal after the holiday period, and then contact Ovo customer service and ask them to reset the tariff config. I do realise that my billing is calculated at the correct tariff rate at point of invoice. I think we can close this post, at least for the time being, so many thanks for your help. I’ll write again if problems continue or recur.

Userlevel 7
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No worries. :)

Forum threads don’t usually get closed on here, as we like to keep them open in case you need more help later. However, if you think any of the comments in this thread answers your question, feel free to mark it as a Best Answer, which will update the status to Solved and is similar to closing it.

Happy New Year too!

Userlevel 4

I miss the Smart Energy Trackers, beautiful little devices <3

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