Why isn’t my smart meter working?

We’re aware of a number of issues that have impacted SMETS2 smart meters. 

These issues are affecting gas and electricity SMETS2 smart meters and their ability to send readings, which means bills are based on estimated reads. We’re working hard to resolve these issues and we appreciate your patience, but we wanted to explain more in more detail why this might be affecting your smart meter.

Before we can explain the issues we’re facing, we’d like to explain a little bit about how SMETS2 smart meters work.

Key terms for you to know:

Install - The process where engineers visit your home to replace your existing energy meters with smart meters. 

Joining - The process where we connect your smart meters to the Comms Hub. This is the device provided by the DCC that allows us to communicate with your meters.

Commissioning - The process immediately after joining where we set the meter up to ensure it operates as a smart meter.

In order for your smart meter to communicate with us, all three steps above must be completed in full.

The DCC (Data Communications Company)

The DCC network is the platform that connects all SMETS2 smart meters across the country to a single, secure, digital infrastructure. They aren’t directly managed by Shell Energy or any other Energy Supplier. The services are shared by every supplier in the UK. 

The DCC’s network is how we, along with other suppliers, receive information from your smart meters. 

Here’s a handy image detailing how smart meters work with suppliers and the DDC to send us your readings.

mceclip1.png

What challenges are we facing? 

The issues that are affecting SMETS2 smart meters are industry-wide, meaning other suppliers are experiencing a number of similar challenges. We’ve grouped together the issues that Shell Energy is facing below.

How will I know if there is an issue with my smart meter?

You may receive a request to submit your reading through your online account. Or, you’ll see that your latest bill has used estimated readings.

Here’s why your smart meter may not be working

Your smart meter has stopped working after recently switching to Shell Energy

Customers with smart meters already installed may be affected if they have recently switched to us from another supplier. This includes customers who were previously supplied by Shell Energy and have since switched back to us. 

When you join us with a DCC serviced meter, we automatically attempt to connect to the meter on or around the date your supply switches to us. 

What does this mean for my meter?

On some occasions, the service request we send to connect to the meter can timeout or fail. We’ll try to connect again, however, if the request continues to fail your meter will be left operating as a standard meter and you’ll need to continue to submit monthly readings for an accurate bill. 

Your meter suddenly stops sending reads

This may affect you if your smart meter was successfully installed, but suddenly stopped sending us your meter readings. 

There can be many reasons for this issue including network coverage problems, DCC system challenges, a fault with the Comms Hub, faults with the meter or a change within the home that interferes with the signal.

What does this mean for my meter?

We may check with the DCC to understand if there are any issues within their infrastructure or the Comms Hub that may be causing the issue. If the fault isn’t found when checking with the DCC, finding out why we can’t communicate with the meter can be challenging and often can’t be resolved. 

As a result the meter will be left operating as a standard meter and you’ll need to continue to submit monthly readings for an accurate bill. 

Your meter has been installed but can’t start the joining process

Your SMETS2 smart meter may have been installed, but the engineer may have not been able to start the joining process. 

What does this mean for my meter?

Our metering partner SMS Plc will contact you three times (by phone, email and text) in order to arrange a new appointment to complete the setup of your meter. 

Your meter joined but couldn’t complete the commissioning process

Your SMETS2 smart meter was successfully installed and joined, but couldn’t complete the commissioning process due to a technical issue.

The setup of a smart meter is very complex and includes multiple steps that need to be completed in a certain order before the meter is successfully commissioned. Where one of the steps fails, we can’t progress any further. 

What does this mean for my meter?

We’ll retry the step that failed up to three times. In the majority of cases, this resolves the issue and the setup completes. However, if your smart meter continues to fail, we’ll be unable to complete the setup. As a result, your meter will be left operating as a standard meter and you’ll need to continue to submit monthly readings for an accurate bill. 

There’s no signal at your property

Customers in this group are affected when the engineer has arrived at a property and discovers that there’s actually no mobile connectivity, known as WAN, so can’t connect to the network. The engineer will advise you if this is the case. 

The DCC is responsible for ensuring that there’s suitable mobile connectivity at your premise to operate the smart meter. When it turns out that the mobile connectivity isn’t available, we raise an incident to the DCC so they can try to fix the issue. This normally happens within 90 days. 

What does this mean for my meter?

Once complete, we can arrange a new appointment with you to complete the setup. On some occasions, the DCC may tell us we need to install an aerial in order to communicate with your meter. 

In a very small number of cases, they can’t establish connectivity and your meter will be left operating as a standard meter and you’ll need to continue to submit monthly readings for an accurate bill. 

Why can’t you exchange the broken meters?

Due to the complexity of smart meters, we don’t exchange broken meters as this isn’t a guarantee that the issues will be resolved. We’re working hard to find a solution to all of the SMETS2 smart meter issues we’re facing and we’ll continue to work with the DCC closely to help identify any potential fixes.