So you’ve just downloaded your bill, but what does it mean? Don’t be afraid, energy bills can be easy to read when you understand them a little better. We’ve answered some of the top bill-related questions below.
What does kWh mean?
kWh refers to a unit of energy: Kilowatt Hours. This is how your energy use is measured. It refers to the amount of energy you would use if you kept an appliance that used 1,000 watts going for a full hour.
One kWh could power:
- Your TV for 3 hours so you can get that walking dead box-set on!
- Your kettle 10 times for calming cups of tea
- Your microwave for 12 meals
We measure the number of kWh used through your meter readings. Your meter will tell us how many kWh you have used since the last time we received your readings.
How has my bill been calculated?
Your bill will be calculated using a few factors:
- Your usage in kWh since the last bill
- Your unit rate
- Your standing charge
Using either your meter readings or an estimated reading that we have generated based on your previous usage; we work out how much energy you have used in kWh. We then times that by your tariff’s unit rate and add your standing charge to get your bill amount.
If you are on Direct Debit, you will be paying the same amount each month. We have calculated the amount you pay based on your usage throughout the year to determine the correct amount to cover you when you use less in summer and when you use more in winter. This is why customers on Direct Debit may occasionally see their account in credit – or in debit.
If you pay on receipt of your bill, you will be paying for exactly what you have used. And will need to submit a payment to us once your bill has arrived.
Where have my meter readings come from?
We always ask you to supply your meter readings within 5 days of your bill date. This is why you get an email reminder at a particular time and it’s very important that you supply those readings within 5 days to ensure your bill is accurate. We’ll also give you membership points, if you’re a member, for your meter readings. If we don’t have your meter readings in the right timeframe we will estimate a reading based on your previous usage.
You may also have been visited by Lowri Beck to collect readings in person.
You can see where your readings have come from by looking at the ‘meter readings’ section of your bill. Each reading will have a letter next to it:
- (E) is for Estimated – so we have estimated your usage
- (M) is for Meter Reader – someone from our meter reading partner has visited to take your reading
- (C) is for Customer – we received this reading from you
As your bill is calculated using your meter readings, we recommend you supply us with your meter readings as soon as you can once you get our reminder email.
Where do I find useful information?
There’s loads of useful information on your bill, but where do you find it?
Your account number will be right at the top of the bill to the right of your address.
Scroll down to the page that has your electricity usage on it. In the first box you will find your tariff name. For your Gas tariff, continue down until you reach the ‘Gas Used’ section.
Usage, Unit rates and standing charges
This same box will show how much energy you have used in the billing period, which is then broken down in the next box by meter readings we’ve received. The next box down shows your unit fees and standing charges. You will find the same information for your gas usage in the ‘Gas Used’ section
MPAN and MPRN numbers
Your MPAN (Meter Point Administration Number for your electricity meter) is found in the Electricity Used box where you will also find your tariff name. You will find your MPRN (Meter Point Registration Number for your gas meter) is found in the same box in the ‘Gas Used’ section.
How much do I need to pay?
On the front page of your bill, you will see a breakdown of your total charges for your billing period including how much you have paid. There will then be a ‘New Balance’ item that shows you whether your account is in credit or in debit. If you are a Direct Debit customer, you will not need to pay anything as your payments come out automatically. If you make your payments when you receive your bill, you will need to make a payment either through your online portal or over the phone as normal.
So get to know your energy bill and it won’t give you a scare!