What Is a Business Smart Meter?

3 mins read

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Looking into getting a business smart meter, but have some questions? Our guide here is here to help, answering what is a business smart meter and other FAQs.

What Is a Business Smart Meter?

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First things first - let’s go through what a business meter actually is. Business energy meters automatically capture your company’s electricity and gas usage every half hour, night and day, and relay it to your energy provider in real-time. 

Only businesses can use these meters since they’re not available for domestic customers. So, could they make a difference for your company?

What Are the Advantages of Business Energy Meters?

Business energy meters make sure hat you are being charged the correct amount for the energy your business uses. This can save your business a significant amount of money in the long term, ensuring you only pay for what you use.

What are the Different Types of Business Energy Meters?

There are a few types of business energy meters available. Here are the most common:

  • Single-rate meters - these charge a single flat-rate fee based on the amount of energy you use.

  • Two-rate meters - these charge two different fees based on the amount of energy you use, depending on the time of day you use it. This is usually split into off-peak and peak times.

  • Three-rate meters - these charge three different fees based on the amount of energy you use, depending on the time and date you use it. This is usually split into day, night, and a combination of evening/weekend.

  • Half-hourly meters - also known as HH meters, these send meter readings to your energy supplier every 30 minutes. We’ll explore more about half-hourly meters later in this guide.

  • Smart meters - this is similar to a half-hourly meter, but instead of every 30 minutes it’ll send readings to your supplier on a less regular basis (think monthly).

Which meter is best for your business depends on a range of circumstances particular to your company.


Now we’ve covered what a business energy meter is and the different types of energy meters available, let’s dig into some frequently asked questions.

How Do I Find Out What Business Meter I Have?

It’s possible to work out the type of electricity supply you already have by looking at a recent bill. Your MPAN (Meter Point Administration Number) will be outlined on the bill. Alternatively, if you don’t have a bill, the electricity distributor near you or your energy provider can tell you your MPAN number. If 00 is the first two digits, you’ve got a half-hourly business meter already. Any other two initial digits means you don’t have one and you’re eligible to have one installed.

Which Business Energy Meter Should I Choose?

The best business energy meter for your business all comes down to your specific business needs. If you’re unsure which one to opt for, reach out to us and we’ll talk it through with you.

What Are the Advantages Of A Half-Hourly Business Energy Meter?

The main benefit of having a half-hourly business meter is that it takes up to date and highly accurate readings so you’ll only pay for electricity which you’ve actually used. Also, since those readings are automatically submitted to your energy supplier you won’t need to spend time and effort on taking and submitting your meter readings manually.

Another advantage for your company is that customers with a half hourly meter can receive a contract deal that is tailored flexibly to meet their own unique user profile. You’ll also receive a detailed breakdown of when you use most of your company electricity. This can help your business to become more energy efficient and cut down on usage to save you money.

What Are the Disadvantages Of A Half-Hourly Business Energy Meter?

Half-hourly business meters offer many advantages to users but there are a couple of things you should consider if you’re thinking of making the switch.

Some companies will include charges with half hourly meters for the meter operator to covert the maintenance and rental of the meter itself. This agreement can cost between £250 and £500 per year depending on which meter operator is used and the kind of meter being installed.

Also, most half hourly meter contracts have a larger scope and size and this makes renewing a contract or getting a new one can take more time. After having a half hourly meter installed you’ll also find that the majority of providers won’t change it to a different kind of meter.

Should I Change To A Half-Hourly Business Meter?

You’re required to change to a half hourly business meter if you have an electricity demand higher than 100kW in any half hour period. You’re also required to make the switch if you’re renewing a contract on a meter number starting with 08, 07, 06 or 05. However, you can also choose to install a half hourly meter if your business has a peak electricity demand over 70kW.

Is It Possible To Change Half-Hourly Meter Supplier Or Tariff?

Yes, you can switch the supplier of your half hourly meter and you can also change the tariff you’re on. The best way to make sure you’re getting the right cheap deal for you is to compare what is on offer from different providers and getting quotes. You should begin this process around six months before it’s time to renew your contract. 

Here at SwitchPal we can help you to find the best deal for you so get a quote from us today!

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