How do I read my prepayment meter?

From time to time, we may need you to read your meter. If we do, this helpful guide will tell you how to do exactly that.

A couple of noteworthy points:

  • We don't need any numbers in red or after a decimal place
  • Debt on a prepay meter may be spread across multiple screens, so it’s worth checking them all if necessary
  • Gas debt = debt built up from gas use
  • 'Owed' debt = debt built up from the meter's daily standing charge


Blue Button Meter


Press the blue button to switch through the different screens. There are several screens to get through, each with a letter on the left-hand side.

A - The current credit amount on your electricity meter

B - Test screen

C - Time and rate in use

D - Date and rate in use

E - Total credit 

F - Standing charge and debt collection amount

G - Total units used (ever)

H - The current meter reading

I - Price per unit

J - If you have a two-rate meter, this is your rate 2 reading

K - Price per unit rate 2 (if you have a two-rate meter)

The following will require the key or card to be in the meter:

R - Emergency credit available

S - Total debt amount on the meter

T - Dect recovery rate (how much you're paying back a week)


Green button Meter


Press the green button until ‘TOTAL ACT IMPORT’ appears. This will be followed by a number with KWH. This is your current meter reading.

'CREDIT' shows your current meter balance, while 'DEBT' displays the amount your meter currently owes.


A and B button Meter


The screen displaying 'Meter Index' shows your current meter reading. This can be accessed by pressing the red A button to cycle through the screens.

To check the amount of debt, press the red button until you see ‘Prepay ON' and the meter beeps. Insert your key or card, you cycle through the screens listed below by pressing the red A button.

Gas debt is on screen 27, built up standing charge debt next to 'Owed' on the default meter screen:

0 - Most recent top up onto meter

1 - Last amount taken for debt

2 - Last amount taken for emergency credit

3 - Last amount taken for gas use 

^(screens 1,2 & 3 will equal screen 0)

9 or 10 - Gas unit price

17 - Standing charge rate

21 - Emergency credit threshold (when your credit amount on the drops to this level, you'll be offered emergency credit to use) - £2.00 for gas, £1.00 for electricity

22 - Emergency credit (the amount of emergency credit you can use)

23 - Gas allocation rate (the percentage of credit you can use for gas if you have debt on the meter). Bulb sets this at 70%

24 - Gas debt recovery rate

25 - Minimum weekly gas debt repayment

26 - Maximum weekly gas debt repayment

27 - Total gas debt on the meter

28 - Non-gas debt recovery rate

29 - Minimum weekly non-gas debt repayment

30 - Maximum weekly non-gas debt repayment

31 - Total non-gas debt on the meter 

33 - Last credit adjustment (money added to a meter via a code)


Keypad Meter


Press 9 on the keypad until you see ‘IMP KWH’ for electricity meters or ‘VOLUME’ for gas meters. Electricity readings will have ‘kWh’ and gas readings will have ‘m3’.

For economy 7 electricity meters, the readings can be listed as Rate 1 and 2, or Rate 1 and Rate 4. There's no simple rule to follow to know which rate is Day or Night. This is different for all meters. The information for your meter may be written on the meter itself or it may say Low (Night) and Normal (Day) next to the readings.

To get both meter readings, press 6 on the keypad until you see 'IMP R01' followed by 8 digits. Press 6 again until you see 'IMP R02' followed by 8 digits. Some meters only display day readings during the day, and night readings during the night.

Was this article helpful?