Government data has revealed that over half of all households have now had a smart meter installed, with 800,000 households getting one after the start of the energy crisis.
Additionally, according to Uswitch research, another million households have requested a smart meter with three million households considering getting one in the next year.
This is likely because of smart meters’ ability to identify where energy customers might be using excessive electricity or gas, therefore enabling them to stay on top of their energy use in the run-up to a new price cap at a record high of £1,971 per year. A third of those customers who had requested a smart meter or already have one cited energy monitoring as a key driver in their decision to get one.
However, a third of households surveyed said they do not have a smart meter and have no plans to get one, saying they don’t know what the benefits are. In fact, though, 54% of those who have one are proactively using it to track and modify their energy, and 21% of those doing so say it has saved them money.
Richard Neudegg, head of regulation at Uswitch.com, said: “Most people are already feeling the pressure of the rising cost of living, and this will only get worse when the new price cap comes into effect on 1st April.
“Consumers have been trying to find ways to reduce their energy use, and it is good to see that millions of households have turned to smart meters to save money.
“Installing smart meters in half the homes in the country is an impressive milestone, but it’s important to remember that four million of these are operating in ‘dumb’ mode, so there’s still a lot of work to be done.
“At a time when energy bills are rising, it is more important than ever to stay on top of your energy use. Smart meters are an easy way to keep an eye on this, as people can use the in-home display to check how much energy they are using in real time.
“Knowing what energy you’re using can help you adjust your behaviour — for instance, turning the thermostat down by one degree can save up to £130 a year.”
With very few expensive deals on the market, switching isn’t an option for most people, so what are the options?
See what energy support schemes or grants you - or any vulnerable friends or relatives - may qualify for, from either the Government or energy suppliers.
Stay up to date with what’s happening in the energy market so that you will be ready to switch when the time is right. The Uswitch Quick Checker provides personalised information about your energy plan and a recommendation of what you should do.
It’s more important than ever to be energy efficient.
There are simple and affordable ways to prevent heat loss, such as draught-proofing doors and window frames, bleeding radiators and keeping thermostats at a steady temperature.
Check out our other energy saving tips here.
While there are currently no savings when it comes to your energy bill, you may be able to cut costs on your other household bills.
*Average savings figure over 18 months for customers who: provided their current broadband cost before comparing deals; saw potential savings in the results table; and completed a broadband switch. Based on February 2022 data.