Energy prices continue to rise exponentially, bringing worry and hardship to many consumers. Ensuring the best tariff deal for your usage profile will help, as will longer-term options including alternative energy sources such as heat pumps and solar power. Energy companies are also looking at innovative ways to engage with customers, offering incentives to better balance the grid using EV/battery storage.
Otherwise, consumers are being encouraged to better manage their energy consumption to minimise the impact of increased bills – and reduce their carbon footprint.
So, is there a quick win in helping people reduce energy bills?
Fortunately, the answer is a resounding ‘yes’. Through the effective use of their in-home displays, consumers can better understand energy consumption and make sensible choices.
In this article we’ll look at how.
How many people have in-home displays in UK?
In-home displays are currently being rolled out across the UK. According to government statistics, over 23 million smart meters have now been installed and connected to the Data Communications Company (DCC) and with these, an in-home display is offered to residential properties.
86% of people with a smart meter use less energy
According to the Super Smart Energy Savers Report from Smart Energy GB, “47% of smart meter users say that having a smart meter installed has helped them to feel more in control of their energy use” and 86% of people with a smart meter said they've changed the way they do things around the house to use less energy. By making energy use more visible, an in-home display helps consumers make more conscious decisions about reducing energy usage and lowering bills at the same time.
These easy-to-use devices also allow consumers to see the impact of appliances on energy use. They help them decide when to use appliances or how to use them differently, when the energy rate may be cheaper. Consumers can also set budgets and be alerted when energy use targets have been exceeded, helping them better manage consumption and costs, resulting in lower bills.
Communicating the benefits of effective in-home display usage in reducing bills
Householders and small business owners should put their in-home display in an obvious place where they can check it regularly. Many energy bodies now give helpful tips on how to use less energy and reduce costs. This could be reinforced by reminding consumers how to use their in-home display to its full as an inexpensive and efficient way to better understand consumption. This will encourage them to take steps to reduce energy usage, which may help lessen the impact of price increases.
How do they work?
An in-home display (or IHD) is just what it says. It displays near real-time information provided wirelessly by a consumer’s smart meter(s) in a user-friendly format. Users can see their energy consumption by type, in units (e.g., KWh), or pounds and pence. Historic data allows comparisons with previous periods and there is the functionality to set budgets, with traffic light indicators to show how you are performing throughout the day.
Prepayment customers can also view their remaining credit, input top up codes and view previous top ups.
Please note, as the units use a radio frequency, the communication signal can be impacted by distance and line of sight interruption by thick walls, fire doors, radiators and large appliances. They should work in 85% of homes, if placed in a suitable location for the signal to be received.
Our tips for managing rising bills
We are happy to highlight best practices on how consumers can use their in-home displays to help them navigate the current challenges. Some simple ideas for using in-home displays to help people make informed choices to keep energy bills to a minimum include:
· Use the hourly energy data chart to identify high usage periods
· Utilise the budget setting and alerts functionality to keep up-to-date with energy usage and modify behaviours accordingly
· Identify energy-hungry appliances and consider how they can be used more efficiently (eg full loads/less frequent washes for washing machines, etc).
· Take advantage of cheaper tariff timings when using high consumption appliances
· View weekly, monthly and annual historic data display options for comparisons against previous periods
· Reduce background usage by switching off appliances when not in use where you can
Other general ways to reduce energy usage are widely reported in the press and can be found on energy company websites.
About In Home Displays
In-Home Displays supplies market-leading in-home display products for smart energy and connected home markets. We work with major players in the energy sector, helping consumers manage and reduce their energy use in real-time by accessing their energy data from smart meters.
Since our in-home displays are a key contributor to the smart energy programme, we think it’s important that our displays are also environmentally friendly. That’s why all our product packaging contains no plastic and is made from 100% biodegradable or recyclable materials with zero single-use plastics. Additionally, by repackaging our shipment units to increase the number of displays that can be shipped on a container by 25%, we have reduced our carbon footprint.