Cheap rate hours

Could anyone help me please to work out when my meter’s cheap rate nighttime hours are? The Bulb FAQs give some general guidance but also say that each meter is different. Great. Can’t see anything labelled on the meter itself. Many thanks, Bert.

Hi @Bert_Shipcrank ,

Ohh - this question. Meter rates are ‘specific per meter’ and don’t change when you switch supplier - so your previous Economy 7 hours will be the same with Bulb.

If you don’t know them, then have a look at a bill you’ve received from Bulb or your previous supplier - you are looking for your MPAN (Meter Point Administration Number) aka the S-Number which looks like:

In the bottom left hand corner is your ‘Distributor ID’ - this lets you know which electrical region you are on. As a guideline the Economy 7 hours per region are:

10: [Eastern England] 2300-0700
11: [East Midlands] 2300-0700
12: [London] 2300-0700
13: [Merseyside/North Wales] 0000-0800
14: [Midlands] 2330-0800
15: [North East England]: 0030-0730
16: [North West England]: 0030-0730
17: [North Scotland]: All meters have different settings
18: [South Scotland]: 2200-0830
19: [South East England] 22-0300 and 0230-0730
20: [Southern England] 2330-0630
21: [South Wales] All meters have different settings
22: [South West] All meters have different settings
23: [Yorkshire] 0030-0730

In the middle top line of the S-Number/MPAN there is also the ‘meter time-switch code’ which should also provide the hours (I believe this number takes ‘precedence’ over the standard area settings)

(from http://community.bulb.co.uk/discussion/comment/21447/#Comment_21447 )

Code Time
500 Single rate
501 Single rate
801 Single rate
802 Single rate
803 Cheap: 23:30 – 06:30 clock time
804 Cheap: 23:30 – 06:30 clock time
805 Cheap: 23:30 – 06:30 GMT
806 Cheap: 23:30 – 06:300 GMT
807 Cheap: Midnight – 0700 GMT
808 Cheap: Midnight – 0700 GMT
809 Cheap: Midnight – 0700 GMT
810 Cheap: Midnight – 0700 GMT
811 Cheap: 00:30 – 07:30 GMT
812 Cheap: 00:30 – 07:30 GMT
813 Cheap: 00:30 – 07:30 clock time
814 Cheap: 00:30 – 07:30 GMT
815 Cheap: 00:30 – 07:30 GMT
816 Cheap: 00:30 – 07:30 clock time
817 Cheap: 00:30 – 07:30 clock time
830 Cheap: 01:00 – 08:00 clock time
831 Cheap: 01:00 – 08:00 clock time

(So if your distributor code is 23 [Yorkshire] and therefore 0030-0730 but your meter time-switch code is 810, then you are probably Midnight-0700 GMT)

Clock time/meter time is the same as GMT (i.e. so they clock is an hour slow during summer) and will NOT be exactly right - meters are allowed to be 30 minutes ‘out’ and have are intentionally got ‘jitter’ set so all the meters in an area don’t switch over at the same time - so it’s worth comparing the time on your meter to your watch/phone so you know the offset.

Still not sure? Don’t blame you! Ask Bulb directly at How to get in touch – Bulb to lookup your details and they’ll let you know (they’ll have to wait until they receive the technical information about your meter though which can be a few weeks after your switch - one of the reasons they don’t put the information in the account).

Hope it helps!

@RichyB What a fantastic answer.

@RichyB - thanks very much indeed, and I echo that comment, what a SUPERB answer that was, with graphics too. Thank you so much!