Gas meter calorific value fault explained

Energy suppliers, including SSE, are currently contacting a number of their customers who have been identified as having a faulty prepayment gas meter.

The meters in question were first manufactured by Landis & Gyr in 2007. An estimated 1.5 million prepayment gas meters have been over-collecting from customers across all suppliers since then. The faulty meters have overcharged customers by approximately 1.9%. This is due to a problem with the Calorific Value (CV) code which is used as the correction factor to help calculate the number of kWhs used.

SSE is focused on working with the manufacturer to fix the meters concerned and refund affected customers as quickly as possible. SSE has identified the customers affected and will be contacting them as soon as possible to rectify the fault and organise their refunds.

SSE’s Head of Customer Service, Jacqui Maxwell, said: “SSE will make sure that all of the affected customers are being charged correctly for the energy they use. Unfortunately, some of our customers have prepayment gas meters which have been over-collecting by small amounts for the gas used."

“As a supplier, we are very sorry that this problem has occurred and we are working hard with the manufacturer to put the meters right and refund any money that is owed. Customers don't need to do anything as we will contact them directly to fix the problem. But if anyone has any concerns they should ring us on 0345 026 7039.”

The refund process is likely to start in December 2017 and will take a number of weeks to complete. If you are issued a refund before your meter has been fixed, any future overcharge will be included within the refund value. All refunds will be issued through a voucher which can be redeemed at a PayPoint for a cash sum.

Frequently asked questions

What should I do if I think my prepayment gas meter has been affected by this issue?

You don’t need to do anything. SSE is contacting all customers who have been affected by this issue but anyone with any concerns should ring us on 0345 071 814.

How do I know if I am affected?

If you have a gas prepayment meter and it is one of the affected meter types, then you may be affected. You do not need to check the meter as we can check your account on our system. We will work with the industry and Meter Asset Managers to ensure your meter is fixed as soon as possible.

What is SSE doing to fix the meters and compensate customers?

The problem with the meter is a manufacturing issue. The industry are working together to fix the faulty meters and have already begun to implement a solution. SSE is working proactively with the industry trade body Energy UK to agree a united approach that all suppliers can apply to their affected customers, which will ensure that no customer is left out of pocket.

How is the meter going to be fixed?

All new prepayment cards will have a message included which, when inserted into an affected meter, will resolve the issue. Should a customer lose their gas card or require a replacement card, the new card they receive will have this message. Work has already begun on this part of the solution.

The message will also be sent to shops (PayPoint & Post Offices) where customers can top-up their gas card. When they take their card to the shop or vendor for a top up, the code will be added to their existing card which will then resolve the problem in the meter in the same way.

How long is it going to take to fix the problem?

Siemens, the PPM infrastructure provider, is already rolling out the technical fix. This takes effect when customers top up and therefore is dependent on when customers purchase gas. Siemens has estimated that this delivery of the fix will take between six and nine months to complete.

I'm worried that I need the money I'm owed to keep my meter topped up

The industry understands the seriousness of the problem and is working hard to make sure those affected are reimbursed as quickly as possible. If you are worried about your costs, contact us and we will help you.

When will I get my refund and what if it arrives before my meter is fixed

Once a customer has been identified the faulty meter will be fixed and the customer will be given a refund. This process will start in December. If the refund arrives before the meter is fixed, the refund given will take into account any future over-collecting. This will ensure no customer loses out and that they are covered over the winter period.