I have already written a post about my difficulty in 2013 persuading British Gas to install Smart Meters, followed by installation issues fraught with delays. I am sorry to say my experience with British Gas Smart Meters continues to be… well… broken.
Last year, in July 2014, my ecoMeter (In Home Display) stopped being able to communicate with the smart meters, As a result it was no longer displaying our consumption but an error message:
“Network Connection Error: 7
A Connectivity Problem has occurred. Please move the device closer to the meter and restart.
If the problem persists please contact British Gas on: 0800 980 6121”
Needless to say, after following its advice to move closer to the meter with no resolve, I gave British Gas a ring…
After the usual “Have you tried turning it off and on again” game, I was advised to keep the ecoMeter unplugged for 24 hours and try again the next day. I did as advised, returning to plug the ecoMeter back in the next day only to be presented with the same error message (to be honest I was not surprised). So back on the phone to British Gas…
I was next advised that is was due to a “patch” which British Gas needed to apply on their head end and that they would contact me back when this patch has been applied, the waiting game begins…
Not hearing back from British Gas after a month I decide to give them another ring to see if they has a progress report. Unfortunately there was no progress and this mysterious “patch” has still not been applied.
Another couple of months roll past and this time their story has slightly changed this time British Gas are blaming it on an issue with the Trilliant Hub which sits alongside my smart meters and is supposed to communicate back to British Gas via the mobile phone network. I was again advised that I should sit tight and wait for their engineering department to come up with a solution.
Now, 8 months later the issue has still been resolved and British Gas have even admitted that they have had to switch my meters back to standard meters on their billing systems and mobile app, effectively rendering them dumb meters again, I now have to manually provide British Gas with meter readings rendering all my past efforts getting them installed in the first place pointless!
From what I can tell I am not the only person who’s smart meters have lost their intelligence, this sounds like it is a wider problem, perhaps with all ‘Phase 3’ meters with a Trilliant Hub? But I can’t believe that this effects every British Gas smart meter in the country. It frustrates me that they must be able to at least provide me with new hardware, even if this means an engineer has to come to my house to fit a new hub.
With no obvious resolve date, I am now considering moving away from British Gas over to npower who are currently offering better rates and a free Nest Thermostat to new customers. But currently British Gas are the only UK energy provider to “claim” to have Smart Meters (but this in my mind is in doubt!). It would be interesting see see if British Gas make more of an effort to get my smart meters working when I phone up to leave.