We all know the clocks change twice a year, but anyone can forget to put them forward or back. That might make you late for work, but if you’re on a time-of-use tariff, it may also change how much you pay for your electricity.
Read on to find out more about Daylight Saving Time and what it means for your energy bills.
When do we adjust our clocks for Daylight Saving Time?
The dates for Daylight Saving Time in the UK change every year, but they follow a pattern.
- Spring The clocks go forward one hour at 1am on the last Sunday in March. This moves us to Daylight Saving Time or British Summer Time (BST). It generally makes it darker later in the morning, but means there’s more daylight in the evening.
- Autumn The clocks go back one hour at 2am on the last Sunday in October. When the clocks go back, the UK is on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). This makes it lighter earlier in the morning, but darker earlier in the evening.
Remember: Spring forward, fall back
Does Daylight Saving Time affect my off-peak hours?
The clocks on Economy 7 (also known as Domestic Economy in Scotland) and smart meters don’t change for Daylight Saving Time (or BST). They stay on GMT all year round.
But if you’re on an Economy 7 tariff you need to be aware of the hours when you qualify for cheaper electricity. Remember – when the clocks go forward an hour in March, your Economy 7 hours might not match the actual time. This will apply for the whole of BST, until the clocks go back in October.
The times on your Economy 7 meter for the day and night readings depend on where you live and the time of year. Please get in touch if you'd like to check the times for your meter or find out how Economy 7 works.
Some older meter types have a clock separate from the unit. If you have one of these meters, the times may stay in BST or GMT all year round. If you think you have this type of meter, please get in touch.
How to prepare your home for winter
When the clocks go back in October, you’ll probably notice it getting colder. This is the time to get your home ready for the winter.
You can also see if you qualify for extra help. The Winter Fuel Payment is a government scheme to help pensioners pay for their energy.
The Warm Home Discount offers assistance to people who need help paying their energy bills.
You might be able to claim the Cold Weather Payment. This scheme is for people on certain benefits during very cold weather.