Frequently Asked Questions
Firstly, check you’ve set up an account. This doesn’t happen automatically when you sign up to Bristol Energy, so you might need to register an account. You’ll need to use the email address you provided when you signed up, as well as your Bristol Energy account number.
If you’ve already set up an online account but can’t access it, try resetting your password by choosing “Forgotten password” or by clicking this link. A temporary password will be generated and emailed to you. Be quick, though – the temporary password will expire within 24 hours!
If a gas or electricity supply has been taken over by mistake, the energy industry has processes allowing it to be returned as quickly as possible. This usually takes around 6 – 8 weeks to complete.
If we’ve taken over your electricity or gas supply without your consent, please give your previous supplier a call as soon as possible so they can find out what’s happened.
You may just have received your final bill. However, if your old supplier doesn’t seem to be aware that you’ve switched to Bristol Energy, please give our team a call as soon as possible so we can find out what’s happened.
If you notice a mistake on your Welcome Letter – such as an incorrect name, address, or supply details – please give our team a call as soon as possible so we can put it right!
Switching to a new energy supplier usually takes around 18 days (including a 2-week cooling off period). Your supply details are checked externally, which can take some time, but you should receive your first bill within 6 weeks.
When an opening reading doesn’t seem to match a property’s historical energy usage – or when a reading isn’t provided at all – it is standard practise for energy suppliers to use an estimated reading. This reading will be used on both your old supplier’s final bill, and your new supplier’s first bill.
If you’re unhappy with the estimated reading and want to change it, you’ll need to take two readings at least two weeks apart (ideally with a photograph of the meter). You can approach either your old or new energy supplier, who will use your readings to calculate a new opening reading and share it with the other supplier. This process is called a ‘Read Dispute’, and usually takes around 6 – 8 weeks.
In your Welcome Letter you’ll find a predicted Supply Start Date. In order to open your account accurately, we’ll need to receive your readings within 5 days either side of this date.
We recommend providing your readings via your online account, or the BE Connected App. Alternatively, simply send your readings – along with your account number – to [email protected].
Don’t worry about giving the readings to your old supplier – we’ll send them across for you!
Firstly, we recommend performing a ‘load test’ to see which of your readings is for day usage, and which is for night usage. To do this, simply take one set of meter readings at 8am and another set at 8pm. The register that has moved is the day rate.
If you have carried out a load test and think the readings on your bill are the wrong way around, please email [email protected] with the following information:
- Account number
- Readings at 8am
- Readings at 8pm
- Meter Serial Number (this can be found on the front of the meter)
A photograph of your meter will also help us with our investigation.
Legally we’re required to make sure your meter is read at least once every two years, but we’ll try to make sure it’s more often than this. We use meter readers from companies called Morrison and Callisto, who will also check the health of your meter before sending the readings to us. We are unable to give you advance notice of the meter reader’s visit, but they’ll be happy to show you their ID to confirm which company they work for.
In order to make sure your account is kept up to date it’s a good idea to take readings yourself, and sending them to us each month. You can do this via your online account, the BE Connected app, or by emailing them (along with your account number) to [email protected].
Everyone forgets to submit meter readings once in a while, so don’t worry! If we don’t receive a reading before your bill is due, we’ll send you an estimated bill. Next time you provide meter readings we’ll update your balance, and you’ll see them on your next bill.
Estimated readings are based on historical usage in the property, as well as projected consumption. They are provided by a third party and are usually quite accurate. However, nothing is as good as an actual reading!
To provide us with a reading simply log in to your online account, or use the Bristol Energy Be Connected app, or send the reading (along with your account number) to [email protected]. Your reading won’t automatically update your balance, but you’ll see it on your next bill.
Bristol Energy are obliged to send you regular bills, even when we haven’t received meter readings. The estimated readings you can see are based on historical usage in the property, but nothing is as good as an actual reading. To provide us with a reading simply log in to your online account, the Bristol Energy App, or send the reading (along with your account number) to [email protected]. Your reading won’t automatically update your balance, but you’ll see it on your next bill.
To refund credit in your account, we’ll need an up-to-date meter reading. This is to make sure your balance is accurate. Readings can be submitted using your online account, our app, or by sending an email to [email protected].
Once we’ve received your reading and created an up-to-date bill, you’ll know how much credit is on your account. Don’t forget that, if your Direct Debit is set at the correct level, you should always have between 1 and 2 months’ credit in your account to stop you falling into debt.
If you have more than 2 months’ credit in your account and would like a refund, please get in touch with our Customer Care team so they can arrange a refund for you.
A Direct Debit lets you spread your costs across the year, rather than paying large bills in the winter. You are also protected by the Direct Debit Guarantee.
If you would like to set up a Direct Debit, please have your bank details handy and give our Customer Care team a call on 0808 281 2222. It may also help to take a meter reading before calling us, so we can set your payments at the correct amount.
We review Direct Debits every three months, to ensure your payments are covering your energy consumption as required by Ofgem. Our calculations will be based on your meter readings if we’ve received them, or on estimated usage if we haven’t.
This doesn’t mean we’ve changed the price you pay for each unit of energy you use – simply that your Direct Debit was too low (or too high) to pay for the energy you’re using.
The best way to make sure you’re paying the correct amount is to provide meter readings once a month via our portal or app. If your annual energy consumption is getting lower, we’ll reduce your payments as part of future reviews.
Remember, Direct Debits are reviewed to ensure you don’t fall behind on your bills. If you’d like advice on reducing your energy consumption, you’ll find it on our Energy Efficiency page.
We keep our tariff prices as low as possible to offer the fairest price to our customers. Changes in the market can affect our costs, so it is occasionally necessary to increase our prices.
We always update our website to let you know about any price changes, and if you’re on a Standard Variable Tariff we’ll let you know about them at least 30 days in advance.
Your tariff is made up of two parts: a unit price (per Kilowatt-Hour of energy), and a standing charge. The standing charge is a daily fee covering costs unrelated to the amount of energy you use, such as rental of the meter, distribution, and infrastructure costs. If you’re on a fixed tariff then your standing charge is fixed too.
This depends on whether there’s a gap between the tenancy periods:
1. If one tenant is moving in directly after the other has left, you won’t need to worry about contacting us. Your old tenant will need to get in touch when they move out to let us know the following details:
- The date of the move
- The meter readings on or close to that day
- A forwarding address
- A phone number in case we need to contact them
Once these details have been checked externally, we’ll send a final statement via email or to their new address.
- Their full name and date of birth
- The date they moved in
- The meter readings on or close to that day, or the current readings if they didn’t record them
- A contact number and e-mail address
We’ll send their new account details within a few days, and your tenant will be able to set up a contract with us or switch to another supplier.
2. If there’s a gap between tenants, during which neither of them is responsible for the bills, then as the landlord you’ll need to set up a temporary account with us to cover that period.
Please contact us when the old tenant leaves to set up your temporary account. We will need the following details:
- The date the tenant moved out
- The meter readings on or close to that day
- Your name and date of birth
- Your phone number and e-mail address
- Your postal address
When your new tenant moves in, please get in touch again with the date and meter readings so we can produce your final statement. If you could ask the new tenant to give us a call, we’ll set up a new account in their name.
Once you’ve received your final statement, you can pay the balance over the phone by calling our team on 0808 281 2222. If there’s a gap of more than a month between tenants then you may want to set up monthly payments, so let us know and we’ll help you set up a Direct Debit.
If you’re moving out shortly, we’ll need to know a few details. Please contact us as close as possible to the day you move out or are no longer responsible for the bills at the property. You can do this by emailing our Home Movers team, or calling us on 0808 281 2222.
We’ll need to know:
- The date you’re moving out
- The meter readings on or close to that day
- A forwarding address, for any correspondence we might need to send you
- A phone number to contact you on
Once we’ve processed the account changes, you’ll receive a final bill. This process can take several weeks, but we’ll do it as quickly as possible for you.
Please provide the name of the next person moving into the house where possible, so we can let them know we’re supplying the property.
If you’ve just moved into a property supplied by us, or you’re moving in soon, we’ll need to set up a new account for you. Whether you’re planning to stay with us, or you’re switching to another supplier, it’s best to get in touch as soon as you can. You can call our team on 0808 281 2222, or email your details to our Home Movers team.
We’ll need to know:
- Your full name and date of birth
- The date you moved in or became liable for the energy bills
- The meter readings on or close to that day, or the current readings if you don’t know what they were
- A contact number and email address in case we need to get in touch
We’ll get in touch by email within a few weeks with your new account details. Once you’ve received the email, please let us know what you’re planning to do. If you’d like to stay with Bristol Energy, we can offer you a fixed tariff, and give you an idea of how much you’re likely to spend with us.
Even if you’re switching away, we’ll need to set up a temporary account for you. If you provide meter readings on the day the transfer takes place, we’ll send you a final bill within a few weeks.
Although we’re always keen to supply more properties with our cheaper and greener energy, we’re not currently able to install meters in new properties.
To do this, you’ll need to contact a larger supplier to fit the meter and connect your supply. Once this is done, you’ll be able to switch to Bristol Energy.
Once you’re connected and ready to transfer to us, please don’t hesitate to call our team on 0808 189 4072.
After your meter is exchanged, the company that carried out the work will contact us with all the details we need. As this can take a few weeks, please feel free to provide us with any information you have by e-mailing us at [email protected].
Usually your new meter will have a sticker or a card containing the following information:
- Date of the Meter Exchange
- Old Meter Serial Number
- Final Reading from the old meter
- Initial Reading from the new meter
If you could also let us know the Meter Serial Number (MSN) from the front of your new meter – usually a collection of letters and numbers – we’ll make sure our systems are updated. It would also be helpful if you can provide an up-to-date reading from the new meter. Most importantly, please let us know whether it was a gas meter or an electricity meter that was replaced!
If you suspect that your meter is running too quickly or too slowly – causing us to over- or under-charge you – we may need to perform a Meter Accuracy Test before replacing the meter. You’ll be charged for the cost of this test, but we’ll refund you if there’s a fault with the meter. A full list of our appointment costs can be found here.
Please note that it’s very unlikely that your meter is running too quickly or too slowly. Of the Meter Accuracy Tests we book, over 95% report no fault with the meter. If this is the case, you won’t be refunded for the cost of the test.
If solar panels are causing your electricity meter to run backwards, you may be liable for the cost of a replacement meter. Please let us know if you suspect this so we can investigate further.
It’s rare for gas and electricity meters to become faulty, but it’s important to know what to do if you think this might be the case.
If you suspect a serious fault with your meter – i.e. you smell gas, or the meter is on fire – you should leave your property as quickly as possible. If the problem is with your gas meter, or you smell gas at any time, you should phone the Gas Emergency phone number as soon as possible: 0800 111 999. Please visit our Gas Emergency page if you’d like more information on what to do in these circumstances.
Signs that your meter may be faulty include: a burning smell; odd noises; hissing; unusual warmth; smoke or fire damage; fuses blowing regularly in your property; loss of electricity or gas supply; a blank screen (on digital meters); the meter reading no longer rising; the meter reading getting lower; obvious external damage; the smell of gas.
If your meter is genuinely faulty, we can replace it free-of-charge. If you have damaged your meter, however, you will be liable for the cost of a replacement.
If there’s a power cut, or any problem with the cables supplying electricity to your property, you’ll need to get in touch with your District Network Operator (DNO) on 105.
Before you do phone, it’s worth checking a few things:
- Check your trip switch to make sure you don’t have a fault with your wiring or an appliance.
- See if your neighbours have been affected. If they are, it’s likely there’s a problem with the local network. This means you’ll need to contact your DNO.
It’s advisable to follow the following safety advice:
- Do not use your gas cooker for heating, as it can release dangerous fumes.
- Keep the freezer door closed- it will stay cold for up to 24 hours.
- Turn off electrical appliances…
- …but keep one light switched on so you know when the power comes back!
- Feel free to use a small number of candles if you need light – but be very careful.
If you’re worried about a Carbon Monoxide leak, you should leave your house immediately and phone the Gas Emergency number as soon as possible: 0800 111 999
There are over 400 hospital admissions in the UK every year due to Carbon Monoxide poisoning, and as it’s an odourless gas it can be difficult to detect. It’s possible to purchase Carbon Monoxide detectors/alarms, but any of the following could also indicate the presence of Carbon Monoxide:
- Staining, discolouration or soot around your gas boiler, fire, or water heater
- Pilot lights and other gas flames burning orange or yellow instead of blue
The following are possible symptoms of Carbon Monoxide poisoning:
- Unexplained headaches
- Dizziness and nausea
- Tiredness and confusion
- Stomach pain
- Shortness of breath and difficulty breathing
If you smell gas or suspect a serious fault with your gas meter, you should phone the Gas Emergency phone number as soon as possible: 0800 111 999.
If you can smell gas, or think you have a gas leak:
- DO open windows and doors (if it’s safe to do so)
- DO inform neighbours
- DO leave the house
- DO make sure everyone’s out of the house
- DO turn off your gas supply at the isolation tap, if you know where it is (turn the handle so that it’s at a right-angle to the pipework to switch it off)
- DON’T switch appliances on or off
- DON’T light matches, cigarettes, or candles
- DON’T return to the house for pets
- DON’T go into the basement / loft
- DON’T use light switches, doorbells, mobile phones, or other switches
Any of the following could indicate a potential gas emergency:
- Gas Leak – you might smell gas, or hear hissing
- Appliance Fire / Explosion – fires and explosions are treated very seriously
- Unable to turn an appliance off – this can result in gas building up in your house
- Loss of Supply – being unable to turn on gas central heating or gas ovens can feel like an emergency, especially when there are children or elderly people in the house
- Damaged or Stolen Meter – meters may be vandalised, damaged, or even stolen from unsecure areas; this can cause a leak, and is treated as a very serious matter
- Carbon Monoxide poisoning
Bristol Energy has voluntarily offered the Warm Home Discount to customers in the Core Group since 2017.
If you’re not sure whether you are part of this group, you can contact the Warm Home Discount Helpline on 0800 731 0214 or visit the Warm Home Discount information page on the DWP website.
For 2021/2022 we will also be offering this scheme to members of the Broader Group. You'll find information on our eligibility criteria and how to apply on our Warm Home Discount page.
If another supplier is planning to take over your energy supply, we may still have time to stop them. You’ll need to contact the company to let them know you wish to cancel the transfer, and to make sure you won’t be charged a cancellation fee.
Even if your new supplier has already taken over your energy supply, it’s never too late to come back to Bristol Energy! Just give us a call and we’ll let you know the best way to return to us.
Once you’ve received your final bill, you’ll be able to see the closing balance on your account. If you’re in arrears, please give our team a call on 0808 281 2222 to set up an affordable payment plan.
If you’ve had a Direct Debit with us previously, we’ll be able to send your refund to that bank account automatically. If you don’t pay by Direct Debit, we’ll send your final refund by cheque.
Don’t worry – if you’ve had a Direct Debit with us previously, we should be able to send your refund to that bank account automatically. If not, we’ll send you a cheque.
Your new supplier should be able to confirm the exact date of your switch away from Bristol Energy. Once this has taken place, your supply details will be checked externally. This process usually takes around 6 weeks - once it’s complete we’ll send you a final bill and process your refund.
Sorry to hear you’re leaving. If you’d like to hear about the tariffs available to you if you stay, please contact our team on 0808 189 4072. If you decide to leave, you don’t need to provide us with any details – just be sure to provide an opening reading to your new supplier. We hope to see you again in the future!
It sounds as though another energy company is trying to take over your supply. If you’ve not asked anyone to do this, please give our team a call as soon as possible so we can find out what’s happened.