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Smart Meter + Economy 7 + Switch to Bulb = difficulties. How can this be resolved?

  • 17 April 2019
  • 3 replies
  • 132 views

Hi, we have an issue that hopefully someone can advise on.

We are (or should be) on an E7 tariff, and got an OVO smart meter installed towards the end of last year. Last month we actually switched to Bulb, and since the switch we have been cut off from our off-peak supply in spite of the fact that we are still in theory on an E7 tariff with Bulb. This is causing some real issues as we're in a new flat with a separate off-peak circuit for hot water and storage heaters.

It's also apparent now that our new meter is only showing a single rate as opposed to the usual 2 on- and off-peak rates we'd get with an E7 tariff.

Having raised this with them, Bulb insist that it will have been an installation error (possibly a single rate smart meter was installed by OVO instead of an E7?), and that they aren't in a position to do anything about it. Bulb say we have to switch back to OVO for it to be rectified.

I've also spoken to an adviser at OVO on the phone, who said that Bulb should be able to (almost literally) 'switch' us back to getting our off-peak connection. Bulb are still insisting that they cannot and nor can they replace our meter.

So my question is, how can this be resolved? Both OVO and Bulb representatives I have spoken to say it's for the other party to deal with. Is it simply a case as Bulb are saying, that we have to switch back to OVO so our smart meter can be updated/replaced?

Any advice would be really welcome as in the meantime we're having to pay extra for, and manually control, our hot water supply, and even in the first place had to spend money on an electrician and heating engineer to actually work out what the issue was.
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Best answer by Eva_OVO 18 April 2019, 13:37

This sounds like a bit of a pickle, @Charlesdunn.

First things first, your smart meter is working fine and there wasn't an "instillation error" - Bulb are just unable to communicate with it.

Your smart meter has the ability to be on a single/2 rate (Economy 7) tariff. As you've switched to a supplier who can't communicate with the meter, they're unable to upload their Economy 7 tariff to the meter. Bulb essentially will need to exchange the meter for one of their smart meters or a traditional meter. This should be treated as an emergency, especially as this is affecting your hot water and storage heaters

We're no longer the supplier and we won't be in communication with your meter, so there's nothing we can do here I'm afraid.

We'd always love to have you back, so if this an option you're considering you can sign up here. For future reference you can find a list of suppliers who can communicate with our meters here.

Let us know how you get on with this!
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Userlevel 4
This sounds like a bit of a pickle, @Charlesdunn.

First things first, your smart meter is working fine and there wasn't an "instillation error" - Bulb are just unable to communicate with it.

Your smart meter has the ability to be on a single/2 rate (Economy 7) tariff. As you've switched to a supplier who can't communicate with the meter, they're unable to upload their Economy 7 tariff to the meter. Bulb essentially will need to exchange the meter for one of their smart meters or a traditional meter. This should be treated as an emergency, especially as this is affecting your hot water and storage heaters

We're no longer the supplier and we won't be in communication with your meter, so there's nothing we can do here I'm afraid.

We'd always love to have you back, so if this an option you're considering you can sign up here. For future reference you can find a list of suppliers who can communicate with our meters here.

Let us know how you get on with this!
This sounds like a bit of a pickle, @Charlesdunn.

First things first, your smart meter is working fine and there wasn't an "instillation error" - Bulb are just unable to communicate with it.

Your smart meter has the ability to be on a single/2 rate (Economy 7) tariff. As you've switched to a supplier who can't communicate with the meter, they're unable to upload their Economy 7 tariff to the meter. Bulb essentially will need to exchange the meter for one of their smart meters or a traditional meter. This should be treated as an emergency, especially as this is affecting your hot water and storage heaters

We're no longer the supplier and we won't be in communication with your meter, so there's nothing we can do here I'm afraid.

We'd always love to have you back, so if this an option you're considering you can sign up here. For future reference you can find a list of suppliers who can communicate with our meters here.

Let us know how you get on with this!


Thanks Eva, we've requested a switch back - hopefully once this goes through it will return service to our off peak supply and sort itself out? Do you know if there is any way a switch can be fast-tracked at all?
Userlevel 4
If for any reason your hot water and heating still isn't working when you come back to us, give the team a call - they may need to boost the Economy 7 function.

Unfortunately we can't fast track the switch, but you'll be back with us in 20 days so it's not too long to wait! 🙂

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