Since lockdown measures came into effect across the country, we've been unable to visit members' homes to install smart meters. We cancelled some appointments to keep our members and engineers safe, but we're happy to say our installation team is now back in action.
We're not up to full speed yet, but we're contacting members when we have installation engineers available in your area. If we cancelled your appointment, we'll be in touch as soon as we can.
We work with expert engineers from Siemens and Morrison Data Services to install our smart meters. This takes around 2 hours, and involves physically removing your old gas and electricity meters and replacing them with new ones.
We've put some extra measures in place to accommodate social distancing during your installation.
Before your engineer arrives
The engineer will call ahead to confirm when they're expecting to arrive at your address. They'll check that no-one in your home has had any symptoms of coronavirus in the last 14 days and that no-one falls into a high-risk group. Please let your engineer know where’s best to park and have a parking permit handy if they’ll need one.
Remember to find any keys that you need to access meter boxes and fuse switches. If you can, it's best to open meter boxes up before your engineer arrives, to reduce the number of surfaces they'll need to touch. If you live in a flat, you might need your building manager to access your fuse switches for you, so make sure to arrange this in advance.
Before approaching your house, your engineer will sanitise their hands and put on personal protective equipment (PPE). This is either a visor or a mask and safety glasses (like the ones Callum here is sporting) as well a brand new pair of gloves.
They'll knock on the door and then move 2 meters back for you to answer. As always, make sure an adult who's over 18 can be home to let the engineer in, and stay home until the installation is finished.
Installing your new meters
Open all the doors inside your home to help reduce the surfaces your engineer needs to touch. Once you've shown your engineer where your meters are, they can get to work.
Please try and stay in a separate room where possible. The engineer will let you know when they need you.
Smart meters directly replace your existing meters for gas and electricity. As part of the installation, the engineer will need to turn off your gas and electricity for around 30 minutes each.
Your engineer will clean all equipment before installing it, as well as wiping tools between jobs. They may ask to wash their hands during the installation, which they'll only do with your permission.
We know it might feel strange, but while we're practising social distancing you shouldn't offer your engineer a cup of tea. They'll bring their own if they're thirsty.
After the installation
Once your new electricity meter's in, you'll be asked to watch a socket test to check that everything's working the way it should. Think of it like a welcome ceremony for metering equipment. You'll be able to witness the test from a safe distance and you don't need to sign anything.
You'll be asked to watch a gas pressure test in your property before and after the installation. This makes sure there's no leaks and proves that everything's working as it should. Again, you'll be able to witness the test from a safe distance and you don't need to sign anything.
If you've got a gas boiler, the engineer will reignite the pilot light at this point. Make sure the door to the boiler is open and it's as easy to access as possible.
Getting to know your In-Home Display
Your In-Home Display (IHD) is the screen that connects to your new smart meters and your Wi-Fi at home. This screen receives energy data from your meter and shows how much energy you're using, as you use it. To minimise contact with your engineer, we're not offering energy-efficiency advice or explaining how to use your IHD in person. We'll leave you an instruction manual for your IHD, or you can read our online guide to using your In-Home Display, which has videos and step-by-step instructions.
That's it! All that's left to do is put the kettle on and enjoy your new meters.