Don’t Overspend: How to Read Your Gas Meter

Understanding how to manage household expenses is more important than ever, especially keeping track of your energy consumption. With gas prices climbing, ensuring you are only paying for what you use can make all the difference.

LEAP energy advisors are always on hand to deliver advice on how to manage your energy spend, but let’s start with the basics of meter reading.

Why Are Gas Prices So High?

Challenging gas prices are influenced by a number of factors. Increased global demand for natural gas, reduced supplies, and global political tensions such as the war in Ukraine have led to a sharp increase in energy costs.

This situation makes it essential, now more than ever, for householders to understand how gas meters really work and how to read them accurately, to avoid overpaying on energy usage.

How Do Gas Meters Work in the UK?

Gas meters in the UK directly impact your energy bill. These devices track gas usage in cubic meters or cubic feet, which your energy supplier converts into kWh (Kilowatt-hours.) This measurement forms the basis for your billing. Whether your home has a digital display (with an easy-to-read electronic screen) or an analogue dial, accurate monitoring is essential for precise billing.

Here’s where overspending can happen. Householders often make mistakes such as not providing regular gas or electricity meter readings, or misinterpreting the readings, leading to estimated bills.

Regularly submitting accurate meter readings ensures you pay for what you consume, and not a penny more!

Prepayment Gas Meters

Another way householders can find themselves falling into expensive debt, particularly as the seasons change, is through misuse of prepayment gas meters. It is important to remember to keep your meter topped up, even during the months of the year you are consuming little or no gas. Standing charges are deducted from your existing credit, so keep your meter healthy with credit to avoid any unwanted extra debt when the cold weather returns!

How To Read A Gas Meter

  • Note the numbers on your digital gas meter, reporting all, except any numbers after a decimal or space.
  • For dial meters, read the numbers the dials point to from left to right, skipping any red dials or those marked with “100 per rev.”
  • Submitting your gas reading can usually be done through your energy supplier’s website or via a phone call. Be sure to note down all numbers carefully.

What Should I Do with My Gas Meter Reading When Moving House?

When you’re on the move, make sure to take a final reading and provide this to your current supplier – this also applies when switching suppliers. This is key to a seamless transition without the risk of overpaying. If you have a smartphone, it is worth taking a picture of the reading on the meter itself; smartphone images are automatically timestamped so you will easily be able to demonstrate an accurate reading at time of relocation.

Why Are Smart Meters More Efficient?

Smart meters cut out the guesswork and the need for manual submissions; they send your meter data directly to your supplier, and avoid any possible errors. Owners of a smart meter typically find it easier to manage their energy usage, often leading to cost savings, because you only pay for the exact amount of energy you use. No more estimated bills!

Many homes in Britain can upgrade to a smart meter right now. For further details, visit Smart Energy GB.

For more details, tips, and advice on how to use smart metres, download our smart meters guide today.