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Do You Need to Install a Smart Meter at Your Business?

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Smart meters seem to get all the glory as a tool to bring down energy waste and cost. But how can they help you and your business?

Want to know how this technology can lower your bills and boost your energy awareness? Read our guide… 

The popularity of the smart meter

Is there a definitive reason for the popularity of smart meters in the UK? The answer partly lies with encouragement from the government, which has the target of making the technology available to every home in England, Scotland and Wales by 2020 — 26 million households in total.

A smart meter is designed to offer precise readings. These measurements are then sent directly to energy suppliers and used to generate fully accurate bills, based on actual usage.

We all know how common smart meters have become in the UK — but do they offer much for businesses? Run a small company with fewer than ten employees? Then, you’re entitled to a smart meter. If in doubt, simply ask your energy supplier or broker. If your energy bills are included in the rent you pay for your commercial premises, it’s the bill payer who needs to make the request for your smart meter – so ask your landlord.

Ways smart meters can boost business

What are the exact advantages of a smart meter in a business building? Here is a selection:

Modern energy use

Reducing waste is critical in the UK right now. Put simply, the long-term plan is to create a fully integrated smart grid linking different hardware, communications and other technologies together in something of an internet for gas and electricity. Smart meters are a crucial step towards this vision, which will eventually serve homes and businesses alike with greener, more efficient, less wasteful and more cost-effective energy.

Eradication of traditional meter readings

Gone are the days of sitting in for a meter reading — smart meters record readings and there’s no need to manually read them.

Smarter usage

This technology will also enlighten you to how you and your staff use energy day by day. Are those 3pm office tea rounds causing a spike in usage as the kettle goes into overdrive? Is your business wasting energy outside of normal working hours because computers are being left on overnight? These are issues a smart meter can help you identify and, more importantly, act on — whether that means investing in a hot water urn or reminding employees to switch off their machines at night. Developing a heightened awareness and understanding of your energy usage also makes you more likely to make smarter money and energy-saving decisions across your business.

Less fear of power cuts

Power cuts are very disruptive to business operations. However, our energy network will upgrade in sync with a boost smart meter use, which will help energy suppliers react better to power disruptions.

Energy tariffs that work in your company’s favour

The digital features of a smart meter help energy suppliers, too, which in turn, help businesses. It’s this kind of information that suppliers need to develop new, innovative and increasingly competitive tariffs.

How to get one installed

It’s simple to have a smart meter installed. Once you’ve made the initial move of speaking to your supplier or broker (or your landlord, in the case of rented premises) and been deemed eligible, your energy supplier will contact you to arrange a smart meter installation time and date. After, a trained installer will visit your company’s premises to fit your smart meter — just make sure there’s someone there to let them in!

Wait a few minutes while the installer talks you through the essentials and you’re good to go.

Are there surveys on smart meter use?

Smart meters are clearly beneficial, judging by the positive reactions to the technology in recent surveys. For example, the Smart Meter Customer Experience Study carried out in August 2017 by the government’s Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy revealed that 80% of those surveyed were satisfied with the technology itself, while 89% were pleased with the installation visit.

This article was created by Flogas, a business gas supplier based in the UK.    

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