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Can my smart meter work out how much I export from my solar panels?



Does the smart meter recognise the electricity I return to the grid through my solar panels?
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Best answer by Chris Juden 18 March 2017, 13:48

What you're talking about is 'export metering' and I believe that ALL smart meters have the facility to do that. I also believe, having read it somewhere on OVO's website, that if you also get your FIT payments from OVO, they will pay you on the basis of those readings, for the actual amount of electricity you've exported to the Grid. And that will usually exceed 50% of the total generated, which is the amount a small generator is 'deemed' to have exported in the absence of an export meter. So it's especially worth having a smart meter if you have solar panels already. Which is my situation too, and is why I'm so frustrated by OVO's smart meter booking process.

Smart meter booking at OVO is organised on the 'lucky dip' principle. No waiting list, no prioritisation of those most in need of a smart meter or best placed to utilise its extra features. The system (if one can call it that) requires you to enter your details and answer some questions on the OVO Smart Meter Booking page, upon which you will invariably (in my experience) receive the Good News - Bad News message: "Good news, we can install a smart meter in your property" (bad news) "However, due to high demand, we don't have slots available to book an installation. It might take a little longer to get someone out to fit one."

It works just like the children's party bran tub: stick your hand in, feel around and... in this case nothing. Going by my experience, of shoving my hand in OVO's bran-tub dozens of times over a period of FOUR MONTHS, your fist will come out empty. In which case all you can do is go away and come back later to stick it in again, in the vain hope that in the meantime OVO might have hidden another smart meter in there, and that some lucky blighter hasn't stuck THEIR hand in first!

So good luck with that!

**Updated 16/07/2019**
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45 replies

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We’ll let the team know your thoughts @Steve587.

Gutted to hear that you've now changed supplier @Gizmo. In order to remove you from the Forum we'd need to ban you as a user. Would you like us to do this?

Lucy
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Seems a bit of a convoluted way to get tariff information, rather than it being available directly. It seems to imply there are different rates depending where you live
Thanks Emma but it’s a bit late for me as I have now changed suppliers (to someone who’s rates were more transparent)

Happy for you to remove me from the forum.
Hey @PeterS and @Gizmo

Just so you know - smart meters are compatible with both PV and Economy 7.

If you'd like to find out what our Economy 7 rates are, you'll need to get a new quote. Once you've entered in your details and clicked 'Next' you'll be offered 3 quotes. You can then click on 'Refine your quote' which is where you'll be taken to a page with the option to tick 'I have an Economy 7 meter'. Once you've clicked 'Continue' you'll be offered the Economy 7 rates for your area - https://switch.ovoenergy.com/get-quote.

Thanks,
Emma
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Sorry, I don't know anything about how Economy 7 interacts with having solar panels, but OVO made me have a smart meter fitted, as the old type meter was running backwards!! If there's some sort of incompatibility @PeterS, I don't know why that would be, but you may in fact be benifitting overall!! @Gizmo - I googled "Economy 7 OVO" and although it gave an explanation (also for Economy 10 as well), there didn't seem to be any rate information, so I can see why you're frustrated.
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Hi @PeterS and @Gizmo,

I've moved your comments to a thread about Solar panels and Smart meters.

@Steve587 can you help with this one?

Thanks,
Nancy
Looking for the same info as Peter,

We have just had PVs fitted and will be looking at an EV in the near future,
currently we still have the old (30 year old!) meters installed but would like to know the rates for economy 7... why do OVO make it so difficult to find out ALL of their tariff rates?
(This was my first post to a forum, hoping the query is beneficial to others too)
I'm on a FiT as I have some PV solar panels fitted, plus I have an Economy 7 meter. (A single meter which switches the tariff, not the dual circuit type).
Having PV panels have so far prevented a smart meter to be fitted, as they were incompatible. Has this been remedied and are OVO's SMs compatible with PV AND E7?
This might be a query for Ovo direct I guess?
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Hi PeterR1947,
There will be no problem in having a smart meter working with your solar panels, but don't expect the smart meter to do anything "smart" for getting your FIT readings - assuming your set-up is like mine, you will still have to take individual readings and submit them to OVO to get your FIT payments.
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As a new customer, I have just signed up to have my smart meters installed; will there be any problem with the electricity smart meter as I have solar panels fitted?

Absolutely not, @PeterR1947

Check out the chat in this topic for more info on how a smart meter works with solar panels. As for getting your Feed in Tariff with OVO, check out this page: https://www.ovoenergy.com/ovo-answers/topics/payments-and-statements/payments/whats-a-feed-in-tariff-fit-and-how-do-i-apply.html.

Tim
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As a new customer, I have just signed up to have my smart meters installed; will there be any problem with the electricity smart meter as I have solar panels fitted?
I suppose after a whole year of trying to sort this with my installer who still says they will sort it (13th June'17) and with Ofgem and Ovo & FIT & Roo-fit & MCS, I'm just really tired of the whole situation. Certificate or not I am still producing green energy which is a plus for the environment so I'm going to take a break, Thanks for all your input
If Ofgem understood the whole picture they would help, if they can't help then I don't see the point of their existence.
If you have paid a lot of money to install solar panels and are not claiming your FIT payments then I would respectfully suggest that it is you who do not understand the system and until you do it is unlikely that you will get anywhere with any of the organisations I have previously directed you to. You can criticize as many organisations as you like but until you sort out your own understanding of the system and your rights and responsibilities within that then you are not going to get any further. You need to start with obtaining your MCS certificate, which, in my opinion, shouldn't be too difficult. Until you do that you are not going to progress with anybody, they all require that initial certification and if your installer has not provided that then he/she should be held accountable for your lost revenue. Was he/she registered in the first place? If you have been chasing him/her for over a year then that in itself sounds suspicious. Might be worth directing your anger towards the installer and trying to progress the MCS certificate instead of everyone else who can only help once you have the MCS certificate.
If Ofgem understood the whole picture they would help, if they can't help then I don't see the point of their existence.
There seems to be no relevant Body prepared to do anything about this problem,
The installer has been promising for a whole year to look into it and do something about it,

Suggest you take them to the small claims court, they are costing you a great deal of money in lost revenue.
All the different Bodies I have contacted just pass the buck to each other Even Ofgem. I would persist with OFGEM and open a case with the ombudsman.
https://www.ombudsman-services.org/sectors/energy
Does anyone really understand this new industry or are we paying out a lot of money just to be guinea pigs while the Grid and its shareholders are the ones gaining from our investment ?Not saying you are wrong, I have no doubt the Grid and its shareholders are doing very nicely but you seem to be missing out on a lot of the benefits of these systems. You seem to have paid out a great deal of money for the installation for 'green' credentials but are financially penalised. You really do need to understand the system yourself before you assume no-one else does.
There seems to be no relevant Body prepared to do anything about this problem,
The installer has been promising for a whole year to look into it and do something about it,
All the different Bodies I have contacted just pass the buck to each other Even Ofgem.
Does anyone really understand this new industry or are we paying out a lot of money just to be guinea pigs while the Grid and its shareholders are the ones gaining from our investment ?
My installer didn't give me an MCS certificate and I have yet to find someone near me in SE London or North Kent who will do that,
If I were you I would get in touch with these people who should be able to sort out your MCS Certificate given they are responsible for the certification process and should be aware that your installers registration lapsed on the date you paid, but the system was fitted whilst they were still registered and so therefore should still be certified.
http://www.microgenerationcertification.org/
Ovo have all my relevant paperwork except this so they can't help, No they won't, they will require the third party certification. then there is the business of how much you get payed according to when you registered ??!! it all seems so convoluted and the National Grid are doing very well out of it!
I only have a small system (2.0kwp) but my last quarterly FIT cheque was close to £100. Depending upon how you deal with this I would think you might even be able to backdate your claim for the FIT payments, it really is worth pursuing.
My installer didn't give me an MCS certificate and I have yet to find someone near me in SE London or North Kent who will do that,
If I were you I would get in touch with these people who should be able to sort out your MCS Certificate given they are responsible for the certification process and should be aware that your installers registration lapsed on the date you paid, but the system was fitted whilst they were still registered and so therefore should still be certified.
http://www.microgenerationcertification.org/
Ovo have all my relevant paperwork except this so they can't help, No they won't, they will require the third party certification. then there is the business of how much you get payed according to when you registered ??!! it all seems so convoluted and the National Grid are doing very well out of it!
I only have a small system (2.0kwp) but my last quarterly FIT cheque was close to £100. Depending upon how you deal with this I would think you might even be able to backdate your claim for the FIT payments, it really is worth pursuing.
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If I have one of your smart meters and it can measure the amount of power exported from my panels to the Grid, what is the need for all this FIT business!!!!!!!The smart meter can tell what has been exported, but there is no way for it to know how much you have used inside your house. As you get paid for the total you generate, your FIT readings are vital for this.
Maybe one day, there will be smart solar generation meters that also link in to the smart meter system. I'm not holding my breath!
@Tim_OVO@Buster
AARGH! Well, I got part of that wrong...
I have just reported to the FIT Team my change to a Smart Meter. They've told me that they cannot currently extract the data from my Smart Meter, so I have to manually go to the meter and get a reading from it, in addition to the one from my internal solar generation meter. I checked back with them and they have confirmed that it is in future plans but not currently available. It seems I totally misread the FAQ about Smart meters.
I now see a post by @Lucy_OVO 4 days ago saying we have to read it ourselves.
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I had a smart meter installed after getting solar panels and I can confirm it does give the export reading, but with my meter its a bit convoluted having to press a certain button and get the second reading that appears - I'm not sure that applies to all meters fitted, but in my opinion, my meter is hardly "smart". I don't know if the reading would be accessible via a display panel as I was not provided with a display panel and neither have I been offered one, some 2 years after having the smart meter fitted!!!sorry no, the export reading is not shown on the IHD. What it does show after two or three presses is the net use as of "now", though it appears to only register every 20 seconds or so. So for example it might show -877W meaning an export or if I switch the kettle on it might show 1.91kW (it is a 2.5 - 3kw kettle). I cannot see the total exported.
My installer didn't give me an MCS certificate and I have yet to find someone near me in SE London or North Kent who will do that,
If I were you I would get in touch with these people who should be able to sort out your MCS Certificate given they are responsible for the certification process and should be aware that your installers registration lapsed on the date you paid, but the system was fitted whilst they were still registered and so therefore should still be certified.
http://www.microgenerationcertification.org/
Ovo have all my relevant paperwork except this so they can't help, No they won't, they will require the third party certification. then there is the business of how much you get payed according to when you registered ??!! it all seems so convoluted and the National Grid are doing very well out of it!
I only have a small system (2.0kwp) but my last quarterly FIT cheque was close to £100. Depending upon how you deal with this I would think you might even be able to backdate your claim for the FIT payments, it really is worth pursuing.
My installer didn't give me an MCS certificate and I have yet to find someone near me in SE London or North Kent who will do that,
Ovo have all my relevant paperwork except this so they can't help, then there is the business of how much you get payed according to when you registered ??!! it all seems so convoluted and the National Grid are doing very well out of it!
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Interesting chat here @Buster and @Confused grandma - I've just edited your replies to include a quote of the comment you're responding to.

Tim
.........
I have never had FIT payments at all from anybody but I am still putting energy onto the grid all day long! and have been for a year,.............
.

You are missing out on a large chunk of money if you are not receiving any FIT payments.
Ok! My Installer's registration ran out the day I paid for my PV system so they couldn't register me with FIT,
I have never had FIT payments at all from anybody but I am still putting energy onto the grid all day long! and have been for a year,
Ovo know this but the industry seems to be in a muddle as they can't help me either,
I still don't understand why I just can't pay the difference between what I am producing and what I have used as I have both export meter and Not so Smart meter.!!!!!


If your installer was registered when they installed your solar PV system then that should have allowed you to register your system, your date of payment should not affect this. You should have been provided with the registration details from your supplier which you can use to register your system. As far as I remember you are the one responsible for registration not your installer.

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