Smart meters are the new generation of gas and electricity meters being rolled out to households across Scotland, England and Wales. There are several myths out there about them – here we address some common misconceptions:  


“You can’t switch supplier”

You can absolutely switch energy supplier with a smart meter. And with a new second-generation meter, you will be able to switch and keep all of your smart functions with no interruption.

If you have a first-generation smart meter, there’s a chance it will lose some smart functions temporarily, but you can still switch energy supplier. Many people with one of these meters will have a seamless switching experience, but others may have to temporarily send meter readings again.

This can be frustrating, but your meter will still continue to accurately measure your usage as before, even if your in-home display may temporarily not show it.


“Smart meters aren’t safe”

Smart meters comply with UK and EU safety standards, and are fitted by trained installers.

When fitting a smart meter, installers will also perform visual safety checks to identify signs of risk in your gas appliances, at no extra cost. In fact, more than 635,000 unsafe situations unrelated to smart meters were identified by installers in 2017 and 2018 combined.


“Smart meters are just energy monitors”

Smart meters do indeed come with a handy in home-display which helps you to monitor how much energy you are using, but they also have many wider benefits for our country.

Demand for electricity in Britain is predicted to nearly double by 2050. Smart meters are integral to Scotland, England and Wales meeting these increased energy demands because they help to enable a flexible energy system that can use greener sources of energy and better balance supply and demand.

Smart meters can't solve climate change on their own, but with this smarter, more energy efficient system they help to create, they are progress.


“Smart meters can spy on you”

A smart meter neither sees nor hears; it can only measure the amount of gas and electricity you use. And it’s up to you to decide how often you share your meter readings with your energy supplier, ranging from half-hourly, daily or monthly.

Personal details, such as your name, address and bank account details are neither stored on nor transmitted by your smart meter. Plus, your supplier can’t use any data from your smart meter for sales and marketing purposes unless you give them permission to do so.


This article was paid for by Smart Energy GB. Smart Energy GB is the organisation tasked with informing Britain about the benefits of the smart meter rollout. To find out more about smart meters, visit