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Meter Readings .....agghhh!!

(19 Posts)
mrswoo Wed 21-Apr-21 12:10:19

I hate reading my electricity meter which is at ground level in a small cloakroom area - lie on stomach on floor - fight off assorted coats hanging from hooks above me - press button 9 on meter and squint at reading before it disappears. Scream. Spend 10 minutes trying to get back off floor.
The gas meter is a lot easier. Get step ladder - climb up to meter high up on garage wall - press button 9 etc etc. Descend.
I usually don't bother submitting a reading but from time to time I get clobbered because my bills are based on estimates.
AIBU to expect an actual meter reader to come to my home - I've never had one - even before covid.

cornishpatsy Wed 21-Apr-21 12:12:02

Maybe you should get a smart meter.

Riverwalk Wed 21-Apr-21 12:14:36

Take a photo of the reading, much easier!

timetogo2016 Wed 21-Apr-21 12:14:47

Can`t you get someone to do it for you mrswoo ?.
It will save you the hassle of struggling.

Shinamae Wed 21-Apr-21 12:16:09

I had a smart meter, it was anything but and my bills were completely out of control, I asked the company to come and take it away and install a traditional meter.....mrswoo maybe ring the company and explain how difficult it is for you to read the meter and they will probably come and move it up for you...

Aveline Wed 21-Apr-21 12:17:54

I agree. I hate trying to read our meter. I tried photographing it but no luck. The light in the cloakroom is poor and trying to catch the right reading to snap it while managing a torch, my reading glasses and the phone before the reading flicks to the next one is almost impossible. My new knees and incipient hip op make it even worse.
We keep being offered a smart meter which I always accept but nothing happens about it!

Blossoming Wed 21-Apr-21 12:20:42

Is yours an older house mrswoo? They sound like they’re in strange places! I think they’re supposed to send a meter reader every 2 years. You should be able to register with them that you need help with meter readings.

Savvy Wed 21-Apr-21 12:20:43

No, you can request a meter reader if you want one. If you tell your supplier that you're having difficulty, they should send one out.

I have the opposite problem, my electricity meter is at eye level, but my gas meter faces a wall which is only 8 inches from the face of it, plus it's at floor level. The only way to read it is to take a photograph.

I ask for meter readers, but when they turn up they tell me they're only booked to read the electricity meter! So still the gas meter goes unread.

Calendargirl Wed 21-Apr-21 12:28:45

Both our meters are at eye level in the garage. I read and e Mail the readings to the company once a month.
No desire for a smart meter. If the time comes when I can’t read them, will have to re-think.

dustyangel Wed 21-Apr-21 12:29:36

Our meters are outside the house. We sill have problems despite one being fed directly to the electricity board!
But in general most houses here have the meters outside and it seems a more sensible solution.

Charleygirl5 Wed 21-Apr-21 12:39:48

I am partially sighted, both of my meters are in a good position outside but I cannot read them so I have had a smart meter for I think around 2 years now. I cannot read it but that does not matter- I get accurate bills each month which is all that matters.

mrswoo Wed 21-Apr-21 13:00:48

Thanks for all your replies. It's good to know I'm not alone in hating the wretched things!
I've tried taking a photo of the electricity meter but like Aveline it's almost impossible to get one. The meter whizzes through a host of different readings and it's almost impossible to get a photo of the correct one. Also, lying on my stomach on the floor wearing varifocal glasses makes it almost impossible to see anything.
I've spoken to my utility company and explained my difficulties and asked if someone could come and read the meters, or better still, move them. The last time I spoke to them they suggested I video a meter reading so they could check all the numbers that flash up. I managed to do this and sent it to them with the accompanying sound track of me groaning as I tried to get back up off the floor in a very confined space!
Apologies for sounding like a moaning minnie!

suziewoozie Wed 21-Apr-21 14:09:48

If the main concern is getting clobbered with large bills, why not look back at you usage over the last 2-3 years and then make sure you are paying enough each month to cover the year - but maybe you’re not on DD?

Elusivebutterfly Wed 21-Apr-21 14:25:10

I have a similar issue and recently sent what I thought was the correct reading but the system told me it was wrong. I did an online chat where they told me I should have been pressing various different buttons for different screens (as well as kneeling down, leaning forward, changing to reading glasses, holding a torch and trying to write the numbers down!).
Eventually they said I would be put on their priority list and a meter reader would come out but no-one has been. Smart meters are not available here so I can't have one

M0nica Wed 21-Apr-21 15:03:51

Why not have your meter moved, even if only down or up the wall?

25Avalon Wed 21-Apr-21 15:07:56

Who’d be a meter reader? They have many awkward meters to read.

mrswoo Wed 21-Apr-21 15:33:29

Elusivebutterfly I feel your pain. I long for the days when meters were straightforward.
susiewoozie our usage is actually pretty low but the previous occupants' was lower still as they were away a lot. When we moved here our DD payments were based on their usage so when the tariff is up for renewal extra payments are added to make up for the shortfall.
I must confess to having a DH who is a lot taller than me and could easily read the gas meter. He has tried reading the electric meter but finds it even harder than I do. I have always been the person in our marriage in charge of meters, boilers, central heating etc - he has his good points but anything even vaguely "techie" is beyond him. grin

All your feedback has spurred me on to get back to my supplier (Utilty Point - who are actually quite good) and try to get these meters moved as I realise it's pretty stupid putting up with them the way they are.

Alishka Tue 04-May-21 09:15:33

My bungalow (newish, purpose-built,functional but bland) has both meters in the covered porch, but in the old coach house I grew up in it was a hoot when the gas/electric man came. In the large square hall, which was laid with parquet, there was a square of flooring which, if you looked carefully, it was able to insert a Special Tool to lift it. If you didn't know, you'd miss it. SO, to access the meters, the men came armed with said Special Tool plus a mirrored viewer at the end of a long stick. 1st man lay on his tum, viewed the meters and called out the numbers to his mate who wrote them down, then helped him to get up.grin

Shropshirelass Tue 04-May-21 09:18:49

I agree. We don’t have gas but our electricity meter is high up and I have to stand on steps., don’t want to do this as I get much older. We asked for a smart meter but were told we can’t have one as the signal isn’t good enough!!! We are in a rural area.