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Half Hourly-Meters Explained

Confused by half-hourly meters and wondering how they differ from standard meters and tariffs? Read on to learn more about how they work and see if they could benefit your business…

To get started, either call us on 0800 9777 000 or fill in our energy quote form to see how much you could save…

What are half-hourly meters?

Half-hourly meters are an advanced form of electricity meter designed specifically for business energy consumers. This technology uses Automated Meter Reading (AMR) to capture energy consumption data at thirty-minute intervals, hence the name ‘Half-Hourly’.

This granular approach to energy monitoring offers significant advantages. For users, it allows for a deeper understanding of usage patterns, revealing peak consumption times and facilitating a more strategic, cost-efficient approach to energy management. For energy suppliers, it assists in balancing the power grid by providing real-time data, thus helping to prevent power outages.

The key differentiator between a half-hourly meter and a standard meter is this frequent data transmission. The continuous, half-hourly reading every 30 minutes, leads to a more accurate representation of energy consumption, empowering users and suppliers with precise and timely information for effective energy management and billing.

How do half-hourly meters work?

Unlike traditional meters, the half-hourly meter does more than just track overall energy use. It provides precise measurements every half hour, reporting these readings back to the energy supplier in real time. This constant data stream results in a detailed and dynamic view of energy usage throughout the day.

Which businesses require a half-hourly meter?

Typically, half-hourly meters are for businesses that require a higher power demand, however, almost any business could request one from their supplier.

What are the benefits of using a half-hourly meter?

These meters capture a lot more information than their less technical counterparts. From your half-hourly meter readings, you will also be able to see when you are using the most energy, and then investigate why this is the case. This could then help you to put additional energy-saving measures into place so that you can reduce your consumption as well as your costs.

The fact that meter readings are taken automatically also saves you the time and stress of having to feed your readings back to a supplier yourself, meaning you have more time to focus on what is important to you – Your business!

How to check if a half-hourly meter is already installed?

There is a simple way to check if you have been placed on this type of meter. You need to look at a recent bill and check for a grid similar to what you see below which is known as the MPAN number. If the number in the top left box is ’00’ then you already have a half-hourly meter for your premises. Half Hourly Meter Indicator

Why did my business get moved on to a half-hourly meter?

All ‘Non-Half Hourly’ profile type/profile class 05-08 meters had to be moved over to half-hourly meters by law. This was carried out by the electricity suppliers on behalf of their customers if they requested a new meter or renewed their electricity contract.

Do I need to take a manual reading on a half-hourly meter?

No, most definitely not! A half-hourly meter is a particularly user-friendly piece of kit and uses a hard-wired connection such as a telephone line or even a mobile sim card connection to send readings to the designated electricity supplier. The entire process is automated, and unless you’re asked to send a manual reading, there’s nothing that you need to do.

What will a half-hourly meter do to business electricity bills?

The idea of a half-hourly meter is to reduce business electricity bills, due to the accuracy of billing and the ability to identify peak and off-peak times you’re able to shift your activities to cheaper periods.

This of course means that bills will be based on actual usage rather than projected estimates within the billing periods. As so, these businesses would be far less likely to be underpaying during billing periods due to the supplier underestimating usage and needing to claim back the underpayments.

What do the numbers in an MPAN number mean?

Your MPAN number which stands for Meter Point Administration Number is a unique number assigned to your electricity supply. Although the numbers in your MPAN may look complex when you first see them, they all combine to help your electricity supplier better understand more about the supply to your business, as well as identify your business.

You can learn more in our guide to MPAN numbers.

What is a half-hourly meter operator (MOP)?

A half-hourly meter operator (MOP) is the entity responsible for the installation and maintenance of electricity meters within business premises. They are responsible for ensuring that the meter can send the data to the data collector. For more detailed information, take a look at our business energy meter installations guide.

The meter operator will either be your energy supplier or an accredited third party. A third-party MOP is often the cheaper option, but you must have a contract in place with an electricity supplier for your electricity. MOP contracts can be independent of their party MOPs. They tend to be 5-year deals, whereas an energy deal might not last as long. However, if you don’t arrange a separate MOP contract your suppliers will place you onto a default MOP.

Can a business choose to switch to a half-hourly meter?

The easiest way to check your eligibility to switch to a half-hourly meter would be to call our energy experts for an informal chat to discuss your current energy usage to see whether they’re right for you. Though we recommend that you contact the National Grid to manage your installation process, before contacting us. It can take up to 3 months for The National Grid to process your half-hourly meter switch.

As well as advising on half-hourly meters, our energy experts are also able to help you with finding the right business energy supplier and tariff. They can provide you with all of the information and guidance you need to ensure you’re able to make a well-informed decision that’s right for your business or organisation.

To get started, either call us on 0800 9777 000 or fill in our energy quote form to see how much you could save…