9 out of 10 smart meter customers now smarter energy savers

New research, published today by British Gas, reveals savings of up to £75 a year are being made by homes with smart meters installed.

  • Research reveals insight provided by smart meters into energy use and its cost is leading to behavioural change
  • Nearly two-thirds (64%) of those who’ve saved money identified savings of up to £75

British Gas smart meter customers around the country are benefiting from ‘seeing their energy as they use it’, with nine out of ten saying they’re taking simple daily steps to manage their home energy use. New research, published today by British Gas, also reveals savings of up to £75 a year are being made by homes with smart meters installed.

Smart meters come with an in-home display called a smart energy monitor that shows how much gas and electricity is being used, and its cost in pounds and pence. More than three quarters (79%) of those who use their smart energy monitor said having a smart meter has made them more aware of their energy consumption.

Because of this greater insight, survey respondents said they’re now taking simple daily measures to reduce their energy, like turning appliances off when they’re not in use. Such changes in behaviour have led to more than half (54%)saving money off their energy bills, with nearly two-thirds (64%) of those identifying savings of up to £75 per year.

Download: British Gas smart meters help customers to save energy PDF 802Kb [Links to - 20140124_News_British_Gas_smart_meters_help_customers_reduce_energy_use]

Stuart Rolland, Managing Director of British Gas Smart Metering, said: “The results show that by seeing how energy is used through the home, you can make small changes that save you money. Whether it’s discovering how energy efficient the fridge is, or the cost of using the tumble dryer, we’re excited that the smart meter roll-out will make it easy for consumers to improve their energy efficiency.”

Smart meters have also encouraged two-fifths (40%) of households to tackle wider energy efficiency issues in their home. Insulation was identified as the action taken up by most of those households, with loft insulation able to save up to £180 a year.[1]

Dr Jack Lewis, Neuroscientist, said: “It’s great to see smart meters are already making a positive impact, helping people to question their habits. By enabling people to see when their household energy consumption changes, via a simple traffic light system, the smart energy monitor triggers an emotional response to nudge people out of autopilot – creating mental space for them to reflect on their energy usage. It’s great to see this translating into measurable behavioural changes, with 9 out of 10 customers already making small changes in their home to become more energy efficient.”

To register your interest in a smart meter upgrade visit www.britishgas.co.uk/smartmeters

Notes to editors:
  • Research findings are all based on 1,498 telephone interviews with British Gas smart meter customers unless stated otherwise. Interviewing was conducted by Network Research in 2013.
  • By 2020 smart meters will be rolled out as standard across the country as part of a Government initiative, replacing current gas and electricity meters. British Gas adopted a strategy to introduce smart meters early in order to bring the benefits to customers as soon as possible, and currently leads the industry with more than a million meters already installed in customers’ homes and businesses.
  • Each home receives a smart gas meter, a smart electricity meter and a smart energy monitor. Smart meters communicate how much energy is being used to a smart energy monitor so customers can see their energy use and its costs in pounds and pence in real-time. The smart meters also record energy use at up to half-hourly intervals and send these readings back to the energy supplier, once a day, putting an end to estimated bills
  • Smart meters are being installed as part of a free, nationwide upgrade for all residential and small business customers. The cost of smart meters is comparable to that of standard meters, and forms part of our business operating costs just as standard gas and electricity meters do today. The overall costs of Britain’s smart meter roll-out will be outweighed by the benefits, including consumption savings for customers, and savings for suppliers who won’t need to send meter readers to properties and will receive fewer billing enquires n contact centres.
About British Gas:

British Gas is the UK's leading energy supplier, and serves around 12 million homes in Britain – nearly half the country's homes – as well as providing energy to one million UK businesses. British Gas provides value for money, dedicated customer service, innovative energy solutions and the highest quality Home Services expertise in the country. Find out more at www.britishgas.co.uk.

Media contacts:

Louise Yarrall, British Gas - 07557 616757, louise.yarrall@britishgas.co.uk

David Whitehead or Andy Rogerson on 0207 260 2700 ordavid.whitehead@bluerubicon.com or andy.rogerson@bluerubicon.com

[1]Savings figure source www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/Energy-saving-assumptions, (01/2014). Actual savings depend on individual circumstances.