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Half-Hourly Meters Guide

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making notes whilst looking for a half hourly meter.

Half Hourly Meters From UK Suppliers

  • British Gas logo.
  • EDF Logo.
  • Scottish Power Logo.
  • Opus Energy Logo.
  • Shell Energy Logo.
  • Npower Eon Sep 2023

What is a Half Hourly Meter?

Half hourly electricity meters automatically submit a reading every 30 minutes. For businesses with a peak demand of 100 KVA of electricity in any half-hour period, it is a legal requirement to have this type of meter. You will be able to find this information on a recent electricity bill.

Despite not being a legal requirement, companies that have a peak demand above 70 KVA but below the high consumption threshold see benefits of a half hourly meter.

Having a half hourly meter in place also unlocks tailored business electricity tariffs that are designed to fit exact requirements in terms of consumption, monitoring and insights.

Your electricity meter will have half hourly capabilities if it has a “00” in the top corner next to an S.

Do I Need A Half Hourly Meter?

Half hourly manage business electricity for large consumption users. Businesses with an electricity peak demand of 100 Kilo Volt Amperes (KVA) or more must have a half hourly meter installed.

Larger businesses using lots of electricity can cause difficulties when measuring usage with a standard or even a smart meter. Half hourly customers are billed using data every 24 hours with readings recorded every 30 minutes. This helps identify electricity wastage to the hour and day to become more efficient, save money and ensure that bills are correct. 

Benefits Of A Half Hourly Meter 

  • Fully-automated meter readings 
  • Accurate billing with no estimates 
  • In-depth consumption data available to help you identify ways to save money
  • Improve budget forecasting with data to predict usage during busier periods 

How Do Half Hourly Meters Work? 

Half hourly meters send readings to your supplier every 30 minutes using an AMR (automatic meter reading) system to ensure billing remains accurate. This system uses a fixed phone line or a mobile signal depending on your half hourly meter set-up. There’s no need to take any manual readings. 

Half Hourly Meter Quotes From UK Suppliers 

In 30 seconds, you can compare business electricity prices and select the tariff that’s right for your company.

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Can Any Business Get A Half Hourly Meter? 

No. Half-hourly meters are only available to UK businesses with a peak demand of 70KVA in a single 30-minute period. Some businesses sitting around these peak demands often choose to get a half hourly meter before they hit the mandatory threshold of 100KVA of peak demand due to the benefits.

What Does P272 Mean?

P272 refers to a piece of legislation passed in 2014 to phase profile class meters from 05 to 08 that had to be moved to a half hourly meter.

This officially became mandatory in 2017 to help businesses and suppliers properly manage high-consumption electricity usage. This ensures that every business in this profile class is billed for the actual amount of electricity they have used and is not wrongly estimated. As the usage is high, estimated billing can cause serious cash flow problems.

How To Compare Half Hourly Meter Tariffs

We have a dedicated team with expert knowledge of switching and installing half hourly electricity meters.

Securing your new half hourly meter with us means:

  • Free half hourly meter installation*
  • Bespoke tariffs and great unit rates
  • We can manage meter operator arrangements
  • Great electricity management tools
  • Competitive business electricity deals

In 30 seconds, you can compare business electricity prices and select the tariff that’s right for your company.

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Energy Procurement for Large Businesses

Businesses looking for a half-hourly meter are generally considered high-consumption users. It may be worth considering a bespoke electricity tariff that falls into creating an energy procurement strategy.

We'll work with you to understand how you use gas and electricity to create a custom tariff that saves you time, and money and helps you reach sustainability goals.

An energy procurement process is as simple as being strategic around sourcing multiple business electricity quotes, analysing the market to understand when the best time to switch is and choosing the right tariff. Our bespoke tariff team can find great quotes from trusted UK suppliers that tick all these boxes.

Energy Procurement Tariffs

We'll not go into all the details of more 'traditional' business electricity tariffs as these can be found on our home electricity page. Here are some tariffs that some large consumption users choose:

Flexible Approach Tariff

If you purchase gas and electricity in bulk you can get cheaper prices that are at wholesale price or close to that price. This may involve purchasing your energy at least a year in advance.

Benefits of Energy Procurement

You may already have an energy procurement process in place, and if that is the case you're ready to work with us to source the most competitive deal.

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If you're looking to set up an energy procurement process, we can help your business with some guidance and then sourcing a great energy deal.

Get help with energy procurement

Here are some of the benefits of implementing an energy procurement process:

  • Saves money- the obvious one is that it can save you money by comparing multiple suppliers bidding to supply your business with a high-consumption contract. We will assist in getting you the best prices.
  • Forecasting- having a process in place will lead to better planning and financial forecasting as you will know the seasons that you'll likely be spending more on energy.
  • Data- you will have access to data management tools that help you identify specific times when energy usage is high to flag potential savings and efficiencies.
  • Pro-active renewals- you will have a process of monitoring the energy market and your renewal window to lock in prices at the best rate possible.

Half-Hourly Meter Installation FAQs

  • How Quickly Can I Get My New Half-Hourly Meter Installed?

    We aim to complete our meter installation within 2 weeks. However, depending on the complexity of the installation, it may take longer. We’ll always be clear and transparent with the timeline.

  • What Is kVA Charge?

    Kilo-Volt-Ampere is a monthly charge paid to the Distribution Network Operator (DNO). To understand exactly what this charge is, you can draw comparisons to a normal standing charge. This charge is related to the power capacity provided to your business premises. 

  • What Is A DNO?

    Your Distribution Network Operator manages the electricity network including cables and wires connecting your business to the National Grid.

  • What Is a Meter Operator?

    Meter operators install and maintain your electricity meter. A reliable meter operator is important for a company with high business electricity consumption as inaccurate billing can cause significant disruption to the business. 

    A great meter operator will: 

    • Ensure you’re compliant 
    • Install your electricity meters 
    • Maintain your meters 
    • Ensure you have accurate usage data
  • How To Read A Half Hourly Meter

    Half hourly meters send automated readings to your supplier. You shouldn’t ever need to take a manual reading but should you need to, it can be read like you’re reading any other meter.

  • Is Business Electricity Cheaper With A Half Hourly Meter?

    Typically, large consumption businesses are offered cheaper electricity unit prices as they are purchasing electricity in bulk. As large consumption businesses typically have half hourly meters installed, they also have access to cheaper business electricity unit prices.

  • What Is Maximum Demand?

    Maximum Demand is a business’s peak demand for electricity at any half-hour period. 

  • What Happens If Your Business Uses More Electricity Than Expected?

    You may be charged for exceeding your Available Supply Capacity. Suppliers will display these charges on your bill as 'Excess Capacity'. 

    Maximum capacity will be a written agreement in your contract. 

  • What Charges Are Applied With A Half Hourly Meter?

    Electricity suppliers may charge the following if you have a half hourly meter: 


    • Excess capacity - You may be charged for exceeding your Available Supply Capacity if you have not agreed to any changes in advance. 
    • Data collector charge - This covers charges the suppliers face to retain any data securely about your business's consumption. 
    • Meter operator umbrella charge - as maintenance and other costs may arise, suppliers sometimes charge a fee to cover any repairs and other miscellaneous charges related to your meter. 
    • Triad payment - these are three half hour periods of peak electricity demand across the National Grid. This is applicable from November through February. These three readings are averaged and then used to calibrate the system costs. These costs may be spread over your annual bill and are typically charged in advance.
  • Who Is My Meter Operator?

    You can find a list on

  • Why Do I Need A Meter Operator Agreement?

    A meter operator agreement covers the installation and operation of half hourly meters. This contract is legally binding for businesses with a peak demand of 100kVA.

  • What Is A Time Of Use Tariff?

    Time of use tariffs allow customers with varying consumption levels at different times of the day to be charged lower or higher amounts at popular times. 

  • Do I Need To Take A Manual Half Hourly Meter Reading?

    There’s no need to take a manual meter reading if you have a half hourly meter. Although, you may want to take a reading occasionally for your records.

  • Is A Half Hourly Meter The Same As A Smart Meter?

    Despite similarities, a half hourly meter is different in several ways. Half hourly meters operate more often at a high frequency (every 30 minutes) rather than a standard meter that sends reading occasionally. 

  • What Data Do You Get From A Half Hourly Meter?

    A half hourly meter records when and how much electricity is being used at all times. This is useful for accurate billing and understanding any ways your business can become more efficient in reducing bills. 

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