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Bulb customers left with faulty smart meter displays

Smart meters installed by renewable-energy supplier Bulb have been showing customers incorrect figures for energy consumption due to a fault with their displays, can reveal. 

Bulb, which started installing smart meters in January, has admitted some customers have had an issue where their smart meter only displays usage for one fuel, even when the firm is supplying both gas and electricity.

The company says it has now identified the cause and is attempting to resolve it. But while Bulb can give some customers guidance on how to mend the meter displays themselves, it's having to reset some meters manually, and it will take up to four weeks to help everyone.

Bulb hasn't said how many customers are affected. It was aiming to install 10,000 smart meters by the end of June, but it insists most installations have been successful.

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'Our new Bulb smart meter is anything but'

Stephen Ellerington, from Goole, in Yorkshire, is one Bulb customer whose display has malfunctioned.

He told us: "Bulb has failed to respond to my complaints and has offered no time frame as to when the issue will be fixed.

"I have no confidence that these meters will work, and had I known this I would never have agreed to have a  meter fitted. Bulb appear to want to sweep this problem under the carpet and keep customers in the dark. I certainly intend to leave Bulb over this issue as it leads me to believe they are not to be trusted." 

We've seen a number of other complaints about the problem from Bulb customers on social media.

Terry King said: "When is a smart meter not a smart meter – when it's fitted but not working. Three months now energy company (Bulb) not interested, just making excuses."

Amanda added: "So our new @Bulb smart meter is anything but. Still no in-home display. And now asked to submit our readings again manually... I thought this was supposed to 'be great' as their website says."

What to do if your Bulb smart meter display isn't working

If your smart meter display is still not working properly 48 hours after your smart meter was installed, Bulb says you should try moving the display closer to your electricity smart meter.

Once you're there, turn it off using the round, flat button at the back. Wait a minute and then press the button again to switch the in-home display back on. Sometimes, this gives it the boost it needs to work properly.

If this doesn't help, you need to contact Bulb to let it know you're having problems using this form.

Bulb also says that if your in-home display is not working:

  • The firm can still get your smart meter readings (although you may not be shown the full cost/usage).
  • Your power will not cut out.

What does Bulb say?

Bulb said that while some customers have had an issue where their smart meters aren't showing info on their electricity and gas usage, the "majority" of its smart meter installations have been successful.

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