Sometimes known has a HH, a half hourly meter is used by large businesses to monitor and control energy usage. As the name suggests a reading is taken every 30 mins and automatically sent to the energy supplier.
Many high businesses with a high energy usage prefer half hourly meters to avoid estimated billing. With such high business energy usage, energy management can quickly get out of control. This often leaves businesses with a large annual bill as they have been undercharged or paying too much when cashflow can be so critical.
Do I Need A Half Hourly Meter?
It is a requirement for large business energy users to have a half hourly meter installed. The current laws state that if your business has a regular peak load usage of electricity above 100 kW you will be required to install a half hourly meter.
These types of businesses are usually in manufacturing, large retail, breweries, and large corporate environments. However, businesses across all industries are required to have a half hourly meter if they meet the usage requirements.
How Much Will I Pay On A Half Hourly Electricity Meter?
Half hourly electricity prices are different to residential prices. This is primarily down to changes in the wholesale electricity market, your contract terms, time of year and business location.
The best way to find out how much your business electricity prices are going to be, you should compare suppliers. Suppliers will install a half hourly meter for free for qualifying businesses.
Data & Half-Hourly Settlement (HHS)
It can be difficult to get a fair half hourly metering contract in place. The huge advantage for businesses using half hourly meters is that it provides much more data about energy consumption.
By using this data, you can save money in at least 3 ways:
- Makes comparing business energy tariffs much more accurate as you’ll have more accurate information about when you use power. For example, your data may expose larger energy usage during off-peak times. This means an Economy 7 or Economy 10 tariff may be more suitable.
- Once you know when you’re spending the most on electricity, you may find you’re able to shift certain energy intensive processes to when rates are lower.
- If you can’t shift production to off-peak times from peak times, you can consider looking into implementing energy efficiency programs to offset some of the cost.
Getting Quotes & Comparing Prices For Half Hourly Contracts
As half hourly contracts are large and mandatory, it can take longer than a typical business energy switch. Don’t expect to be able to get a few quotes today and have your new plan up and running by next week.
Business energy experts recommend you start getting quotes together and comparing prices 6-8 months before your contract is up for renewal and no less than 4 weeks beforehand. This will give you ample opportunity to discuss your requirements with the various suppliers out there.
Currently, if your business has a regular peak load usage of electricity above 100 kW you will be required by law to install a half hourly meter. Typical businesses include factories, large warehouses, department stores, breweries, supermarkets, large offices and other large scale industrial and agricultural enterprises.
From, November 5th, 2015 all new and renewing contracts for profile classes 05-08 will also be required to switch to half hourly settlement as well as laid out in P272.
If your business uses an HH meter, you’ll also have to appoint a Meter Operator (MOP) and Data Collector (DC), both of which can usually be supplied by your energy supplier, although these are rarely the cheapest option.
Half Hourly Metering Frequently Asked Questions
Am I required to get an half hourly meter?
If you’re business at any point has a peak load electricity usage above 100 kW or renewing your contract and your meter is in profile class 05-08.
What about P272 Regulation?
P272 was brought in by Ofgem and now makes it mandatory for all new contracts under profile class 05-08 to get half-hourly meters installed. This applies to both brand-new contracts and contract renewals and came into effect on November 5th, 2015.
Do I still have I have to take meter readings?
No. HH meters are normally connected to a fixed phone line or increasing mobile phone connections and send the data directly to your supplier. However, you will still be required to have a Data Collector (DC) and a Meter Operator (MOP) – both of which can be provided by your electricity company, although not always at the lowest price.
What does a HH Meter Operator (MOP) do?
A HH meter operator is basically responsible for the installation and maintenance of your meter. They also make sure the communications equipment is able to send the data to the data collector without any issues.
This can be done either by your energy supplier or by an accredited third-party (often cheaper). However, you must have a contract in place to for your supplier to supply you with electricity.
What does a Half Hourly (HH) Data Collector (DC) do?
As the name implies a data collector, collects the data, and passes it over to your energy supplier. While this is done automatically it’s still important and it can be provided either by your energy company or an accredited third-party.
Unlike, an MOP you do need to have a contract in place with DC before getting your power, but you do need one to get access to all your data.
How do I know if I have a half hourly meter?
All you have to do is check a previous energy bill and looking at the S number. If the number in the top left (just to the right of the S) is 00 then you have a half hourly meter. This numbering system is also why HH meters are sometimes called 00 meters.
Businesses with advanced automatic meter reading (AMR) meters in the profile class 05, 06, 07 or 08 should also be able to operate under half-hour settlement. If unsure ask your supplier and/or your MOP.