About four months ago I switched our energy supplier to EDF. The welcome offer came with a free smart meter which I eagerly signed up for.
I used to have one years ago which never seemed to work properly. It did, though, allow me to get an idea of how much it cost to boil a kettle or the very slight savings that could be made by fully turning off appliances left on standby.
Back then, I was far from alone with my faulty smart meter with some estimates stating that around 2.3 million of them never worked.
Confident that surely all the high profile issues with smart meters would have been ironed out, I was looking forward to seeing how much electricity my hot tub used and what other savings could make.
I thought I was just going to be sent some simple plug-in gadget like last time but no, it had to be installed by a qualified fitter.
It turned out that some kit now needs to be fitted to the gas and electricity meters. The primary purpose of this, it seems, is to remotely send the readings to EDF, saving them a lot of admin.
All done the installer then plugged in and switched on my flashy new smart meter gadget. Somewhat shiftily he said it wasn’t connecting which “could take up to 24 hours” before leaving the building swifter than Elvis.
I then spent a few hours trying to get the damn thing to connect, reading through the leaflet that came with it, watching YouTube videos and reading through various online FAQs.
Eventually it became clear it really wasn’t working so I rang EDF, waited an age before being informed that my meter hadn’t been fitted correctly and they would try and get it working remotely. This process would take up to “a month” and then if that didn’t work they’d send someone out.
I gloomily watched my smart meter for four, five, six weeks as it continued to report that I was using £1.66 of energy every day. If only!
Somewhat wearily I rang again yesterday and after the obligatory long wait and a chat with home-working customer service representative who, by the sounds of it had her baby on her lap, that I had to put through to another team.
More waiting and more explaining ensued before it was confirmed the meter was still not working and there was nothing for it than to send another installer. This would involve more waiting in, more disruption and a whole load of questions.
- Did I have any Covid symptoms?
- Did I have any pets?
- Did I have a doorbell?
- Were there any issues with parking?
- Could the house be ventilated before they arrived?
- Could I wipe clean door handles and other surfaces?
I know we’ve all got to take care during the pandemic but as the questions came I started to wonder whether the D in EDF stood for Diva!
So, on we go, six months after joining EDF, smart meter still not working and I’m losing the energy to go on!