Suppliers sometimes ‘dispute’ your readings with other suppliers, here’s what that means

When you change supplier you have to give the new one a meter reading to open your account, they then pass this onto your old supplier who closes your account with the same reading.

If your opening or closing read is incorrect and we’ll need to change it, this also needs to be raised with the old or new supplier. Raising this is called a dispute, as we need to make sure the reading for both suppliers match in order to make sure that your bills are correct. We are disputing the reading with the other supplier.

It’s really important that the opening and closing meter reading match with one another, otherwise you can be over or under charged for your energy.

A dispute needs to be raised when an opening or closing meter read is incorrect

There can be a few different reasons why a dispute might need to be raised:

  • You may have forgotten to submit a meter reading to open your account, which meant an incorrect estimated reading was used.
  • The meter reading you submitted was not accepted and an incorrect estimate was used. This could be because it was different to what was expected.
  • The meter reading was incorrectly entered and then accepted.
  • You have an economy 7 meter and mixed up the day and the night readings.

What to do when this happens:

Firstly, do not panic! We can get this corrected and will make sure you get a new bill that uses the correct meter reading.

If we’re the new supplier, we will first ask for 2 photos of your meter reading, 1 week apart from each other. We work out the difference between these two readings and then use that difference to work back to what your opening reading with us should have been. We also need 2 photos to send to support the dispute, to make sure the old supplier accepts the new reading that we propose.

Once the dispute has been raised, we await this being accepted by the other supplier. As soon as we get confirmation that this has been accepted, we’ll make sure the new agreed reading is updated on the account and we’ll send you a new bill showing this. Your other supplier will also send you a revised final bill for your time with them.

If we are your old supplier, and it’s your last meter reading which needs changing, we will ask you to get in touch with your new supplier.

Disputes should take no longer than 3 weeks:

The timeline for a dispute resolution can vary. We always give an expected timeframe of 2-3 weeks from the dispute being raised for it to be resolved, but they can take longer.

This is because it can depend on the speed in which the other supplier addresses the dispute and sends us an update on whether they accept the new reading.

If they’re taking longer than 3 weeks, please feel free to either let us know so we can chase up on a response.

Why we can’t always dispute:

Disputes can only be raised if the meter reading difference is over a certain amount. If the reading is less than 250kwh difference for electricity, or less than 1200 kwh for gas, we are unable to dispute this and it will be rejected if we try.

Disputes can be rejected:

The new proposed reading can be rejected for a number of reasons, including:

  • The new meter reading we’re proposing in the dispute matches with the readings they hold in the account.
  • The dispute was raised incorrectly.
  • The pictures aren’t clear.
  • They need more supporting evidence.

If your dispute gets rejected, we can re-raise this depending on the cause of the rejection. We may need some new photos of meter readings to support this.

We may also ask you to get in touch with the other supplier. This may be because they haven’t yet responded to our dispute and the quickest way for them to acknowledge this is to give them a ring.

What’s your experience?

Disputes are something which we appreciate can be a confusing and sometimes concerning issue. Is there anything in this process you’ve experienced which you’d like explaining? Or any part of the process you’d like to see improved specifically?

This is something which relies equally on the other supplier to get resolved, so we appreciate this can be a sometimes long-winded process, so any suggestions are always appreciated!

Its been over 2 months and I cant get Bulb and Octopus to agree to my final readings

Bulb 5144 ( left )

Octopus 5132 ( new provider )

I am being overcharged for 12 units for electricity .

They have agreed on the gas readings

How do I get them to agree on the final readings.

Hi @Nirmala,

I’m really sorry about that issue, and that it’s taken so long to resolve!

I’ve updated your final bill to show the closing reading of 5132, and this should come through to you in the next few days and the account will close.

All the best,

That was so quick… if I had known I would have come here much earlier.

Thank You so so so much

I will make the final payment now.


No worries @Nirmala, let us know if there’s anything else we can help with!