Guidance

Electricity meters: independent testing of accuracy

What you can expect if you request a meter test.

If you have contacted your energy supplier (the company sending the bills) about your electricity meter readings but remain unhappy at the outcome, you have the right to request an independent test of your meter.

Although the test is free, you may have to pay your energy supplier for organising it if your meter is found to be working correctly, which was the case for most of the 231 meters tested in 2017.

The process

  1. Ask your energy supplier for an independent test of your meter. You will be contacted to agree a time for its on-site testing. This will be done by an independent examiner, in the presence of an operative from your supplier.
  2. It’s best to note your meter reading and serial number on the day of the visit.
  3. The examiner will carry out checks on your meter while it is still in place and discuss your concerns with you.
  4. Your meter will then be removed by the operative and a replacement installed. Your meter will be taken away by the examiner to an approved laboratory for further testing.
  5. The examiner will post you a ‘determination’, the name for his or her report. A copy will be sent to your energy supplier and the meter owner if this is a different company.
  6. If your meter is working correctly, within the legal limits, the determination will say it is accurate.
  7. If your meter is faulty, the determination will say it is inaccurate, stating how far it is outside the legal limits and, if possible, estimating how long this has been the case. Your energy supplier will contact you to sort matters out. This may involve compensating you for over-billing or agreeing a payment plan for under-billing.

What we do

The Office for Product Safety and Standards ensures that electricity meters are accurate, working closely with energy suppliers. We contract SGS (UK) Ltd. to employ examiners to perform the independent testing of electricity meters and approve the laboratory where this is done.

We are not responsible for issues relating to electricity bills.

Where to go for further advice

Citizens Advice

Contact us

If you have a specific enquiry about the accuracy of your electricity meter, we recommend you complete our online enquiry form, following the instructions as required.

Alternatively you can contact the Safety & Standards helpdesk on 0121 345 1218.

It is open:

  • Monday to Thursday 09:00 to 17:00
  • Friday 09:00 to 16:00

Or you can write to:

Office for Product Safety and Standards
Lower Ground Floor
Victoria Square House
Victoria Square
Birmingham
B2 4AJ

Published 13 March 2014
Last updated 2 July 2018 + show all updates
  1. Page now focuses on the testing process.
  2. The title of this guide has been amended to reflect that NMO is responsible for electricity and gas metering accuracy and that Ofgem are the energy regulators and are responsible for all aspects relating to energy billing. NMO are unable to comment on billing issues as this is outside the scope of our responsibilities. This responsibility instead lies with Ofgem (https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/contact-us). Alternatively you may also want to consider contacting the Citizens Advice Bureau (https://www.adviceguide.org.uk/) or the Energy Ombudsman (http://www.ombudsman-services.org/energy.html) for independent advice on energy supply.
  3. First published.