Retaining E7 tariff after Smart Meter Installation

I’ve had an horrendous experience after a smart meter installation. I only agreed to the installation, provided I could retain my E7 tariff. After the installation, the coms to the hub won’t work, my account still has the E7 tariff. Until such time as the coms are working, I’ve been told to submit readings vis my online account, (Day & Night) two rates. I can’t seem to get across to “Patricia”, That meter was left, only being set up as a “one rate” meter. So I can’t submit two readings. Please see the exchange of emails. I’m losing the will to live!

FAO Patricia

I don’t seem to be able to get through to you. I need to submit both Day and Night Readings, Rate 1 and Rate 2. (Two readings). The meter is only set up for Rate 1. (One Reading). So I can only take one overall reading for energy usage, not two as required on my account.

Please give me a contact number for your supervisor.

David Bell

Sent from Mail for Windows 10

From: Patricia (Support)
Sent: 04 December 2020 08:28
To: David Bell
Subject: Re: We can’t commission your meter


Patricia (Bulb Help)

Dec 4, 2020, 8:28 GMT

Hi David,

We have a guide on how to read your meter.

You can then sign in to your [Bulb account] and enter the meter readings. However I do see that you have been submitting meter readings on the Bulb account.

You only have electricity with us not the gas. Yes you will need to submit the meter readings the same way as you have been previously.

If this doesn’t help, or you have more questions, just let me know.

Thanks,
Patricia

David Bell

Dec 3, 2020, 10:18 GMT

FAO Patricia (Bulb Help)

I haven’t has a response to my last email?

In a previous email you said, “This also means we’ll need you to continue to submit ( gas and) electricity readings to us, otherwise we’ll have to estimate your statements. You can do this in the same way as before, by clicking “Submit a meter reading” in your Bulb Account.
If you’re not sure how to take manual readings, please follow our guide”

I subsequently found a Youtube video, that demonstrates how to take economy 7 readings on the same meter as mine. You press and hold the “B” button for at least 5 seconds, and whilst still holding The “B” button, you click the “A” button and your night rate reading displays. Can you confirm this is what I’m supposed to do to get two readings? If so, mine is not doing this. See attached photos.

So can you please tell me how I’m supposed to submit two readings manually, whilst I’m waiting for the coms to be set up? If you are unable to do this, can you please escalate this complaint to a higher level.

(I suspect the installer was to supposed to set it up for E7, but he didn’t seem to have a clue).

David Bell

From: David Bell
Sent: 01 December 2020 11:57
To: Support
Subject: Re: We can’t commission your meter

Hi Yes I know My account is still showing Day/Night to allow for 2 readings, I sent you a screen shot of that. Re this part of my last email, quote:- “So I have looked at the meter and from what I can see, it is only showing “Rate1”, when I try and scroll through, (hopefully to Rate2), all I get is something referring to a pre- credit account, which I assume is something not relevant). Unless I’m doing something wrong?”

I can’t see how I’m supposed to take two readings, so are you saying it’s not set up to do it yet? I would add I am IT literate, and one of my previous work roles was to write functional requirement specifications for IT housing management business systems. So if it’s supposed to be set up now, to take two readings, it isn’t.

Attachment(s)

David Bell

Dec 1, 2020, 11:57 GMT

Hi Yes I know My account is still showing Day/Night to allow for 2 readings, I sent you a screen shot of that. Re this part of my last email, quote:- “So I have looked at the meter and from what I can see, it is only showing “Rate1”, when I try and scroll through, (hopefully to Rate2), all I get is something referring to a pre- credit account, which I assume is something not relevant). Unless I’m doing something wrong?”

I can’t see how I’m supposed to take two readings, so are you saying it’s not set up to do it yet? I would add I am IT literate, and one of my previous work roles was to write functional requirement specifications for IT housing management business systems. So if it’s supposed to be set up now, to take two readings, it isn’t.

Patricia (Bulb Help)

Dec 1, 2020, 9:50 GMT

Hi David,

You have a 2 rate meter. I do apologise for advising on the gas, it was my mistake.

You have a 2 rate electric meter.

It shows on your online account that you will be bale to submit 2 reading, however if you are still having a problem with submitting these readings you can always have the readings sent to us and we will be able to add them on for you to make sure that the account is billed on actual readings.

Once our smart meter team is able to commission your meters we will be in touch.

Hope this helps,
Patricia

David Bell

Nov 29, 2020, 16:26 GMT

I have noted your email.

In your previous email which refers to Gas and Electric readings (I only have electric), you state I can still submit readings manually. As stated many times, I wished to stay on my previous tariff, which was agreed on the outset. If you look at the screen shot attached, I’m still showing that tariff, which is fine. So I have looked at the meter and from what I can see, it is only showing “Rate1”, when I try and scroll through, (hopefully to Rate2), all I get is something referring to a pre- credit account, which I assume is something not relevant). Unless I’m doing something wrong? (and yes I have been on line and looked at your help section on reading these smart meters).

So when it comes submitting my Day and Night readings, how can I when it appears the meter is not set up for two rates? If this was a short term issue, I wouldn’t have a problem, but everything points to this scheme being rolled out prematurely, without these types of issues being resolved.

The guy installing it did say something about he’d been given details about “a weird way of installing it”, and seemed confused and he confused me.

So I it may be the meter hasn’t been installed the way it should have been? .

I would also like to point out, that predictions on my energy usage are way off. I now have solar panels, and I now only have one electric car, as opposed to two previously. So I anticipate my annual usage as no more than £1400 maximum, and probably much less. (My usage when the meter was taken out was 46.5% Night rate, 53.5% (Day rate). So I suspect any estimates in the meantime based on previous years will be way out.

If you are unable to give me a timescale and/or are unable to resolve how I can give you manual readings. Can you please escalate this to someone further up your hierarchy. I still want to speak to someone direct. You have my contact details.

David Bell

Attachment(s)

Patricia (Bulb Help)

Nov 29, 2020, 14:44 GMT

Hi David,

Our smart team is working hard with the manufacturer to get these problems fixed but it is, unfortunately, a case of being patient while we work on this.

Once this is sorted, it will show both readings on your IHD.

I won’t be able to give you a correct time frame, however once we are able to resolve the issue, we will let you know.

If you view your tariff information in your Bulb account, you will see your rates you are charged.

Here’s a link to help you:
[https://account.bulb.co.uk/dashboard

Sorry for any inconvenience.

All the best,
Patricia

David Bell

Nov 28, 2020, 17:50 GMT

PS: Further to my previous email, I would also point out, the last reply I received makes reference to my has and electric meters. I only have electric!

David Bell

Attachment(s)

David Bell

Nov 28, 2020, 17:34 GMT

PS: I your last response you make reference to my gas and electric meters. I only have electric. Also you ask me to keep sending in readings? How are you going to calculate the night rate from a single read out meter?

David Bell

David Bell

Nov 28, 2020, 11:29 GMT

Regarding the email below I have received from “support”

I’m sorry but this is not acceptable. I only agreed to the installation on the basis that I could stay on the Economy7 tariff, please note my numerous emails to that effect. I only agreed because I charge my electric car overnight on the cheap rate. This was explained to you. You have installed a single read out meter, so you have taken me off the cheap rate. What rate have you put me on in the meantime? If you can’t resolve this in the next few days, I want you to reinstate my old meter.

I want someone to ring me, not just the standard response you send out to everyone.

David Bell

David Bell

Nov 28, 2020, 11:26 GMT

I’m sorry but this is not acceptable. I only agreed to the installation on the basis that I could stay on the Economy7 tariff, please note my numerous emails to that effect. I only agreed because I charge my electric car overnight on the cheap rate. This was explained to you. You have installed a single read out meter, so you have taken me off the cheap rate. What rate have you put me on in the meantime? If you can’t resolve this in the next few days, I want you to reinstate my old meter.

I want someone to ring me, not just the standard response you send out to everyone.

David Bell

Attachment(s)

Patricia (Bulb Help)

Nov 28, 2020, 9:10 GMT

Hi David,

During your smart meter installation, we can see that the engineer had some trouble connecting your gas and electricity meter to the smart network. This process is called commissioning.

There are various, complex errors that could have occurred during the commissioning process, and we’re investigating why these may happen and finding a fix. Although we cannot confirm at the moment which error your commissioning hit, I’ll explain our two most common ones.

The first error we are facing is connecting meters to the Home Area Network, which links the meters and the communications hub. If your meters fail to join this network, we cannot communicate with them or receive their readings.
The second error is uploading Bulb’s security credentials onto the meter. If we’re unable to upload our credentials, we leave the meter in a dumb mode for security reasons.

We’re working on remotely solving the root cause of these errors, and various other ones.
At Bulb HQ, we are also working on ways to try and connect your meter to the network without the need for an engineer visit. We hope to commission the meter remotely by the end of the year.

It’s not always the case that another engineer visit will fix the issue, as our engineer wouldn’t have left your home without trying everything they could to connect your meters to the smart network. Because of this, we’re not yet able to send an engineer out as we need to look into the error first.

Since your gas and electricity meter wasn’t commissioned, your In Home Display won’t show your gas and electricity usage.
This also means we’ll need you to continue to submit gas and electricity readings to us, otherwise we’ll have to estimate your statements. You can do this in the same way as before, by clicking “Submit a meter reading” in your Bulb Account.
If you’re not sure how to take manual readings, please follow [our guide](https://eur05.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fhelp.bulb.co.uk%2Fhc%2Fen-us%2Farticles%2F360029317971-How-to-r

I’m really sorry that we are unable to resolve this now. We hope that we will be able to commission your meter later this year when we have developed the necessary tech.

I hope this helps.

Thanks,
Patricia

David Bell

Nov 27, 2020, 10:29 GMT

HI - My smart meter has been installed, but your technician was unable to get it to communicate with your central hub. He said he had a godd connection, but it wouldn’t communicate. As requested, all day yesterday I kept trying to establish a connection through the In House Display. I’ve tried this morning and it’s still not working.

Can someone let me know what is happening please

David Bell

From: David Bell
Sent: 21 November 2020 10:02
To: Support
Subject: Re: Re: Spot opportunities to save energy

Thankyou

Attachment(s)
2
David Bell

Nov 21, 2020, 10:03 GMT

Thankyou

Patricia (Bulb Help)

Nov 21, 2020, 10:01 GMT

Hi David,

Apologies for the delayed response, I was away for 2 days this is the reason I have not replied.

Yes we will remain on an economy 7 tariff, basically with replace the meter with a like for like so you will remain on the same tariff.

Have a good day,
Patricia

David Bell

Nov 21, 2020, 9:21 GMT

Could I have a reply please?

From: David Bell
Sent: 20 November 2020 20:38
To: Support
Subject: Re: Re: Spot opportunities to save energy

Could I please have a categorical response to my last email. Because if you can’t guarantee I can stay on my existing economy 7 tariff, I will be cancelling the installation.

Attachment(s)

David Bell

Nov 20, 2020, 20:38 GMT

Could I please have a categorical response to my last email. Because if you can’t guarantee I can stay on my existing economy 7 tariff, I will be cancelling the installation.

David Bell

Nov 18, 2020, 20:10 GMT

Hi - You’ve sent a number of these reminders through. Can I just clarify once more, that I will be able to stay on my economy 7 tariff?

David Bell

Patricia (Bulb Help)

Nov 12, 2020, 8:35 GMT

Hi David,

Your appointment has been booked for Thursday 26th Nov – 8am till 12 Noon.

Thanks,
Patricia

Hello @DaveDB,

I’m really sorry to hear you’ve not had a good experience lately.

When we do smart meter installations, we exchange these ‘like for like’, so your economy 7 meter would have been swapped for a smart meter which was also economy 7.

Unfortunately, sometimes when setting up the account, after a meter exchange, the incorrect configuration is selected, meaning that the system believes your meter is a different kind, in your case, a one rate.

As long as the meter details match those in the national database, we’ll be able to change the meter configuration so you still have an economy 7 meter.

I can see you’ve been in touch with Sian from complaints, and it looks like you’ve managed to get this resolved but please do let me know if you need any more assistance!

Freya :bulb:

Hello Freya
No, the account is set up correctly, (as it was before, for E7), the meter isn’t. It’s not “like for like”. The installer didn’t know how to do that. It’s set up/defaulted to one rate. What I think Sian is saying is that it will be resolved once the meter coms and my credentials are set up and working correctly. So no, it isn’t resolved yet, until such time as the coms are working properly. So please don’t mark this up as resolved, because it isn’t yet.

David Bell