New business electricity meters and connections
Knowing where to find and how to read your business energy meters is essential if you want to make sure you're getting billed correctly for your business energy use.
If you don't regularly provide your suppliers with accurate meter readings, they will have to estimate your energy usage, which could see you overpaying or underpaying each month.
If you're overpaying for business electricity, you'll be needlessly out of pocket and will have to go through the hassle of claiming back the extra you've paid. If you're underpaying, you could one day find you're hit with a massive energy bill to make up the shortfall.
If your business premises doesn't have a meter or an electricity supply, or its meter is broken, you'll need to put that right as soon as possible.
Here's all you need to know about new electricity meter installations, including how to get a new business electricity supply at your businesses and how to apply for a business electricity meter or a business gas meter.
When do you need a new business electricity meter?
You’ll need to look at a new business electricity meter installation if your existing electricity meter isn’t working properly or if your property has a standard meter fitted but your business has a peak electricity demand of 70KVA or more. In this instance, you’ll need a business electricity half hourly meter.
If you need a new business electricity supply at your premises, it’s recommended that you start looking for an electricity deal – and get your application for new business electricity meter connection in – around one month before you need your supply to be fitted.
We can do this for you (see below for contact details). Once we've arranged a supply agreement for your business, the meter will typically be fitted within 10 to 15 working days.
You can apply for a new business electricity meter by speaking to your current supplier and outlining exactly what you need. You can do the same if you need a new business gas meter fitting.
Does the premises currently have a business electricity supply?
If the business premises already has an electricity supply, this makes the process a lot easier. If not, then new cabling will need to be installed. This can take up to 12 weeks, so be sure to factor it in to your plans for the business premises.
How to find out who your electric meter suppliers are
If you need a new business electricity connection or meter and you don’t know who supplies your business electricity supplier, you'll need to call your local distribution company.
Distribution companies are responsible for maintaining the network of cables that transports power across the country.
Each area of the UK has a different distribution company that looks after the cable network in that area, which means the number you need to call depends on the region in which your business premises is based. If you have premises in different parts of the country, you’ll need to call the local distribution company for each.
- Northern Scotland - 0800 048 3515
- Central and Southern Scotland - 0330 101 0300
- North West England - 0800 195 4141
- North East England - 0845 070 7172
- Merseyside and North Wales - 0330 101 0300
- South Wales, Midlands and South West England - 0845 601 5972
- London, East and South East - 0845 601 4516
- South England - 0845 026 2554
Even if you don’t need a new electricity meter or connection, it helps to know who your supplier is so you can compare business energy rates and make sure you’re on the best deal.
What is an MPAN number and where can you find it?
MPAN (or Metering Point Administration Number) is a unique reference number for your electricity supply. It will be 13 digits long and begin with an S as shown in the example below:
If the premises already has an electricity supply, you can find the MPAN on a previous electricity bill. Or, your landlord should be able to provide this information. If you can’t find it you can get in touch with your local energy distributor and they should be able to tell you what your MPAN is.
For brand new connections, you’ll find the MPAN in your new connection agreement paperwork.
What is the KVA of the supply?
KVA (or Kilo Volt Amperes) is the total amount of electricity that you can draw from the grid at any time. You can find this information on your new connection agreement documentation. This should be adjusted to suit the needs and demands of your business.
If, for example, you’ve moved into an existing business premises and the previous tenant ran a lot of power intensive machinery, you may find that the KVA is set too high and you’re drawing (and paying for) more electricity than you need. Equally, you may have a lot of energy intensive equipment that needs a higher KVA to power it all.
Is your business electricity supply single or three-phase?
Single and three-phase power systems are different units using alternating current (AC) electric power. The main difference is the constancy of delivery.
If your business uses mainly electricity to run things like lighting and heating, it will probably only need a single phase electricity supply. If it runs heavy duty machinery, or anything that will place a significant strain on the grid, then it’ll need a three-phase supply to keep up with demand.
To find out whether your supply is single or three-phase, check your new connection agreement documentation. The cost to install three-phase power at a UK business will vary depending upon the exact specification of the job. If you need to upgrade your supply, speak to your supplier about 3 phase meter installation.
What type of tariff will your business need?
Depending on the days and times when your business is going to use most energy, you may benefit from a tariff that lets you pay less for the electricity you consume between certain hours.
This is something we'll discuss when we arrange your meter installation, so we can make sure we’re searching for deals that provide the cheapest option for your business.
What is the cost of commercial electric meter installation?
This will depend upon who supplies your business energy and the type of meter you need. It’s always worth negotiating with your supplier to help installation costs down.
How long does it take to install a new electric meter at a business property?
It’s also worth bearing in mind that a new electric meter installation from UK energy suppliers can take a few weeks to arrange. If you’re moving into a new property, you should aim to get the ball rolling at least four weeks before you’re due in there.
When sorting a time and date for commercial electricity meter installation, you’ll need to make sure either yourself or a member of staff is on hand when the engineer comes to fit the meter. If not, they may not be able to complete the work.
What if your business needs a smart meter?
Business smart meters are usually free to install, and work in conjunction with any electric meters you have installed at your premises. Having a smart meter fitted ensures you’re always billed accurately as it will automatically send regular meter readings directly to your supplier. Smart meters also come with a separate display that will give you an at-a-glance guide to your energy usage, so you can see when and where you’re using energy, which can help your business to be more energy efficient.
To find out more about smart meters and new electric meters for business, or to switch business energy, give our team a call on 0800 326 5517.
If you need a new electricity meter at your business premises, we can help. Simply give us a call on 0800 688 8773 and we’ll walk you through the process.
Here are some FAQ’s about what you may need to provide to help us get your new meter sorted. If you’re not sure about any of this, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on 0800 688 8773 and we can help you.