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One Utility Bill • 2 mins

What does an electricity meter look like?

How to Meter readings electricity
What does an electricity meter look like?
Sending regular meter readings to your energy supplier is the best way to get accurate bills and to make sure that you don't get billed for energy you didn't use. If you need to know how to send gas readings too, check out our guide to reading a gas meter

Energy meters measure your energy usage in kWh, which is a unit of energy. Energy companies use the data from these meters to make sure you get billed for your actual energy consumption. When you get an initial quote from utility companies, it's based on an estimate of the energy you'll use. 

There are a few types of meter, and it's not always clear how you should get a reading from them. A credit meter is what you have if you don't have a prepayment meter or a smart meter.

Electricity bills on a capped package are based on estimates, and if your meter readings show a difference between your estimated and actual usage, the direct debit for your utility bills can be adjusted so you don't end up in debt at the end of your contract.

Your energy supplier can't keep things accurate if they don't have your readings, though!

Smart meters automatically send the info about your energy usage to your supplier, so you don't need to send anything. If you still have a traditional meter, the pics and info below should be really helpful.,

We've put together a collection of credit electricity meters below. Electricity is measured in and displayed in KiloWatt Hours (kWh).

Single Phase Electricity Meter

Reading - 34331

This type of digital meter is pretty easy to read. You just need to take note of the reading on the digital display. 

A pale grey single phase electricity meter -  it has a digital  display

Single Phase Electricity Dial Meter

Reading – 62963.

Dial meters look confusing, but don't panic. They're pretty outdated now, but if you have one in your new place, here's how to read it: 

  1. Take note of the numbers on the dials from left to right. Ignore dials that are red or marked 1/10. 
  2. If the dial is pointing between two numbers, you need to note the lowest one. If it points straight at a number, write the number down and underline it. 
  3. Look at the dial to the right of any underlined numbers. If the dial is between 9 and 0, subtract 1 from the number you underlined.
      • e.g. If the dial was pointing at 3, change it to 2.


A black box containing a single phase electricity dial meter - there are six dials in the box, most are black but one is red

Single Page Meter Reading – 65626.

Ignore any red digits on this type of analogue meter, reading only the black numbers. 

A black and red electricity meter

Single Phase Meter

Reading 68116

This meter is slightly easier to read - you just read the numbers left to right on the digital screen.

A grey single phase electricity meter showing a reading of 68116