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There is a wide range of electricity meters that your business may have installed, depending on your electricity consumption and the times at which you operate. See below for our simple guide about each electricity meter type and how they could benefit your business.
Half Hourly meters take a reading of your business electricity demand every half an hour. These regular readings provide a very accurate insight into your business’s energy demand, helping to ensure that bills are precise and stop you from overspending.
Businesses with an electricity consumption of over 100kW are automatically given a Half Hourly Meter whilst businesses with a consumption greater than 70kW can opt into using a Half Hourly Meters.
Smart meters are a more contemporary version of Half Hourly meters and these are now being rolled out to businesses. Operating in the same way that Half Hourly Meters do, Smart Meters are more accessible and cost less to use.
A Standard Meter uses just one unit rate when measuring a business’s electricity consumption, meaning that for every unit of energy used, it costs the same; no matter what time of day it is. Any Supply Number (MPAN) that begins with 03 is a Standard Meter, making them easily identifiable.
Businesses with low electricity consumption will often use a Standard Meter to supply their energy.
An Economy 7 meter is a two-rate electricity meter, with one rate measuring your daily usage and the other measuring night-time electricity consumption. The daily usage rate will charge your business a higher price per electricity unit during peak hours, and the night-time rate will be a lower price for every unit used within an established 7 hour period.
The 7 hours in which daily and night-time rates vary per area and energy supplier, so make sure to check when organising a new business electricity tariff.
Economy 10 meters are two rate energy meters, which work in a similar way to Economy 7 meters. However, they operate over a 10 hour period, rather than 7 hours. These are typically only offered to business electricity customers and can allow your business to save more money on its electricity costs during off-peak hours.
Also similar to Economy 7 meters, the hours in which each rate is applied varies between location and energy suppliers, so it’s best to check when comparing business electricity tariffs!
Evening and Weekend meters use a two-rate system when measuring business electricity consumption. However, rather than simply using the hours in a day to determine which rate is applied, they also consider which day your business is using its electricity.
These meters use one rate for daytime electricity consumption and a second cheaper rate that is applied during evening hours and on weekends. This type of meter benefits businesses who use most of their electricity during evenings and weekends.
When comparing energy plans, be sure to ask about the hours in which Evening and Weekend rates are applied, as these vary between energy suppliers.
Evening, Weekend and Night meters use a three energy unit rate to measure electricity usage. Businesses using this meter will be charged a more expensive rate for their daytime electricity consumption, a second rate for their Evening and Weekend usage, and a final third rate when using electricity at night.
The night-time rate will be the cheapest of these three, which will benefit businesses that operate mostly at night and on the weekends, such as bars and nightclubs.
Similar to Standard Rate meters, Maximum Demand 1 Rate meters use a single rate when measuring business electricity. However, these meters are designed for businesses with a high electricity consumption.
Another electricity meter that’s similar to the Economy 7, a Maximum Demand 2 Rate meter uses a two-rate system that charges a cheaper unit rate during off-peak hours. This meter type is for business electricity customers using a large amount of energy.
The Seasonal Time of Day (SToD) Meter is the most complex meter that businesses may use. When using the SToD electricity meter, your business will be charged different rates depending on the different times of day and different months during the year.
This brings in a huge variety of charges for your business electricity. A SToD meter can be very useful should your business experience highly fluctuating periods of electricity usage.
If you use a Related Off-Peak meter for your business electricity, this will mean having a second meter linked to your main energy meter. The second, or ‘related’ meter, consumes less energy than the main one and the off-peak rates offered will be cheaper.
Both of these meters will have a different MPAN, however, they are billed on the same invoice, as if they were just one meter.
When you decide to switch energy suppliers, you must switch both your main business energy meter and its secondary related meter. If you do not switch both meters, your current supplier can object to your new energy supplier switch.
A Multi Metered MPAN is used when multiple meters are linked to one main electricity meter. Your business’s main electricity meter will then monitor all of these meters and invoice these on the same bill with one MPAN.
This form of metering is likely to be used within a larger business group or site.
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