How to read your energy meters

Find out everything you need to know about how to read your energy meters. To switch your energy supplier enter your postcode in box below:

There are three kinds of electricity meters: digital, electronic, and dial meters. There are only two types of gas meter: digital and dial.

We have put together a few pointers to help you read each type of meter.

Digital meter - Electric

This type of meter will feature a row of numbers, similar to those you would find on a digital alarm clock face.. To read the meter simply write down the numbers displayed from left to right, but ignore any numbers in red or in a red background.

If your tariff gives you lower-priced off-peak electricity like ECO20:20 or Economy 7 your meter may have two rows of figures instead of just one.

If your meter has more than one row of figures then the process for reading is identical to that for a single row, just make sure that you write down both rows. The previous meter readings on your bill will indicate which row is the ‘day rate’ and which the ‘night rate’ is.

Electronic meter - Electric

Some electronic meters have various different displays and a button that you press to take readings, while others will automatically scroll through the various displays themselves. The process of taking an electronic meter reading is the same as that for a digital meter with two rows of figures. Write down all the numbers from left to right in each display, and again you must ignore any numbers in red. The previous readings on your bill will indicate which one is the 'day rate' and which the 'night rate' is.

Dial meter - Electric

Your dial meter will have several different dials reading from 0-9. The key thing to remember with your dial meter is that each dial turns in the opposite direction to the one before it, so before you read your dial meter, make sure you check the direction of your dials.

Then read the dials from left to right, and if the pointer falls between two numbers, always take the lower number. Additionally, if the pointer is between 9 and 0, write down 9 and reduce the reading you've already taken for the dial on its left by one. For example if your first dial reads 7 exactly, but your second dial’s pointer is between 9 and 0, then round down the first dial to 6 and the second dial to 9. Also you don't need to read the last dial on the right.

Digital meter- Gas

The process is largely identical to reading your digital electricity meter. Again read the numbers from left to right, and ignoring any red numbers. However, you also ignore all the digits after the decimal point and any printed zeros.

Dial meter - Gas

Reading your gas dial meter is again very similar to reading your electricity dial meter. Every dial on your meter will be numbered from 0 to 9 and remember that each dial will turn in the opposite direction to the one before it. So remember to check and make sure you’re certain of which way all your dials turn before taking your meter reading, then read the dials from left to right. Round down if the pointer falls between two numbers. Also make sure you ignore any red dials, dials which are marked '100 per rev', and whichever dial has the largest diameter.

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