To switch energy suppliers, you only need your postcode, a recent energy bill (or ability to answer a few lifestyle and/or home size questions) and about 10 minutes. You can switch your gas and electricity energy supplier by phone or online with a trusted energy price comparison site — uSwitch explain how.
Why pay more for the same energy?
Those who have never switched energy supplier before often believe it to be a painful, confusing process. But by using an Ofgem accredited energy comparison website like uSwitch, you'll be surprised just how easy it is — and yes, you really can save hundreds of pounds a year by changing energy plans.
How to switch energy supplier online
Step 1: Go to an accredited energy price comparison website
Check the website is accredited by energy regulator Ofgem under their Confidence Code. This means you'll get a free, informative and comprehensive view of the energy market that is up to Ofgem's standards.
Step 2: Enter your postcode
Gas and electricity prices are set regionally, and some suppliers only serve certain areas. This will narrow down which plans and suppliers are available to you.
Step 3: Enter your usage information
For the most accurate comparison results, you'll need to input your household's consumption details. You can get those off your most recent energy bill, or you can estimate them by answering questions about your lifestyle.
If you have a bill but can't find the info you need, check out our video on how to read your energy bill.
Step 4: Review your comparison results and pick a new plan
This is the part many people find daunting - picking a plan and supplier from the long list of options
If you're overwhelmed by the options there are ways to refine your results, using filters.
- You can opt to just see plans the site can switch you to.
- You can view only fixed rate energy plans (where your kWh rate is locked in for a year or so).
- You can view only plans without an early exit fee (cancellation fee).
Some sites offer further helpful information such which plan is most popular in your region or info about suppliers' customer service.
Step 5: Confirm your switch
Once you've picked your new energy supplier and plan, the last step is to confirm that switch by providing your full address and bank details (if you've chosen a direct debit plan, which is usually the cheapest option).
That's it! Your new supplier will be alerted to their new customer, then will contact you after the two week cooling off period with follow up information about your service switchover date.
What happens afterwards?
What can you expect after you switch supplier? Here are a few common questions answered:
Will my energy supply be interrupted when I switch supplier?
No. Regardless of what supplier you're with your gas and electricity will be the same, the only thing that changes is how that energy is charged. Even though you switch supplier you'll still be getting the same physical energy. There won't be any an interruption to your supply, and nobody coming round to your house to put in new pipes or cables. The only thing that changes is the company that bills you.
Am I with my new supplier as soon as I confirm my switch?
No. The entire process takes 17 days (three days plus a two week cooling off period). Your new energy supplier will contact your old supplier and agree a switch over date which they will let you know about. If you've switched gas and electricity, the dates may be different for each. Don’t worry though, you will always receive energy during this process.
Will I hear from my new energy supplier?
You'll receive a welcome pack and letter from your new supplier. This will outline what you've agreed to and give you the details of your new plan. You may also hear from your old supplier but the only thing you need to give them is your final meter reading to ensure an accurate final bill.
Will I be billed twice?
No. The companies agree a switch over date , so provided you've cancelled your Direct Debit, you will not be billed twice.
What if I change my mind?
You have a cooling off period of 14 days. If you decide that you no longer want to switch your supplier, just contact your new supplier and let them know. They will be able to cancel the switch for you without interrupting your supply.
Can I switch suppliers again?
You can switch suppliers every 28 days if you want to, but be careful to check for cancellation charges. We recommend checking your status once or twice a year to make sure you're still getting the best plan. If you're on a fixed term plan, with a fixed tariff rate until a given date, it's also worth making a note of the end date so you can switch around a month before.