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  • FIRST POST
    • Eucalyptus84
    • By Eucalyptus84 2nd Nov 17, 1:37 PM
    • 9Posts
    • 1Thanks
    Eucalyptus84
    pre-payment meter woes
    • #1
    • 2nd Nov 17, 1:37 PM
    pre-payment meter woes 2nd Nov 17 at 1:37 PM
    Hi all,

    We bought our first home together in April/May this year. Prior to us there was a tenant living in the property and there are pre-payment meters for the electricity and the gas. After a little investigating we found that NPower are the provider. I called them and changed the details on the accounts checking that I can get the meters removed at any time (which they said would be fine.)

    A few months later after we were settled I sorted out an appointment to get them both changed. As each appointment apparently takes half a day I had to book one for the morning and one for the afternoon. No problem, I booked a day off work so that I could sign their piece of paper or whatever was required (both meters are outside the property).

    The day arrives and Lowri Beck (the company that deal with meter switches) cancel the morning appointment. When I ask about the afternoon they say that one is fine and the technician should even be able to do both in the afternoon. The guy never shows up. When I speak to Lowri Beck again apparently there was an emergency so I should wait... which I did and the guy never arrives. Both companies apologise and NPower send out two separate credits for the meters to the tune of £30 which were supposed to appear on my card/key respectively but only show up for the electricity meter.

    Fine. Emergencies happen but now I've told Lowri Beck that I'd like a Saturday appointment as I'm not willing to take another "holiday" from work to have them fail to turn up. This was at the end of July.

    It is now November. I have been in touch with Lowri Beck multiple times and have heard that NPower don't do Saturdays... that they DO visit on Saturdays but only in certain areas (not mine) AND that all this is going to be disregarded given the length of time this has gone on for and the mess they have made of the whole thing.

    So where I am now is Lowri Beck have sent an email requesting a Saturday appointment for me which has had no response. They have kept me up to date that there is no response, but there is no response.

    I've never had a pre-payment meter before. I like NPower (their customer service is always polite and they have some good deals which I would like to take advantage of) but I don't know what I can do now.

    I suspect hassling Lowri Beck will not resolve anything and if I change providers won't the new one also use Lowri Beck to try and change the meter?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated as I feel like I'm losing a lot of money by being on pre-payment meters at the moment but I don't know how to get the meters changed without wasting another days holiday.
Page 1
    • trickytree1963
    • By trickytree1963 2nd Nov 17, 1:42 PM
    • 179 Posts
    • 105 Thanks
    trickytree1963
    • #2
    • 2nd Nov 17, 1:42 PM
    • #2
    • 2nd Nov 17, 1:42 PM
    Ring up , tell them you want Smart Meters and they will be desperate to come!

    Seriously though, I am not sure why they told you it takes a whole day to change the meters. Its normally about 45 minutes per meter. Think you might be stuck with it being done on a week day though, theyr'e pretty inflexible on days they come.

    Write to Npower heading letter "Complaint" and outline the issues involved. Hopefully that will prompt them to get their act together
    • footyguy
    • By footyguy 2nd Nov 17, 1:50 PM
    • 3,815 Posts
    • 1,518 Thanks
    footyguy
    • #3
    • 2nd Nov 17, 1:50 PM
    • #3
    • 2nd Nov 17, 1:50 PM
    Hi all,

    We bought our first home together in April/May this year. Prior to us there was a tenant living in the property and there are pre-payment meters for the electricity and the gas. After a little investigating we found that NPower are the provider. I called them and changed the details on the accounts checking that I can get the meters removed at any time (which they said would be fine.)

    A few months later after we were settled I sorted out an appointment to get them both changed. As each appointment apparently takes half a day I had to book one for the morning and one for the afternoon. No problem, I booked a day off work so that I could sign their piece of paper or whatever was required (both meters are outside the property).

    The day arrives and Lowri Beck (the company that deal with meter switches) cancel the morning appointment. When I ask about the afternoon they say that one is fine and the technician should even be able to do both in the afternoon. The guy never shows up. When I speak to Lowri Beck again apparently there was an emergency so I should wait... which I did and the guy never arrives. Both companies apologise and NPower send out two separate credits for the meters to the tune of £30 which were supposed to appear on my card/key respectively but only show up for the electricity meter.

    Fine. Emergencies happen but now I've told Lowri Beck that I'd like a Saturday appointment as I'm not willing to take another "holiday" from work to have them fail to turn up. This was at the end of July.

    It is now November. I have been in touch with Lowri Beck multiple times and have heard that NPower don't do Saturdays... that they DO visit on Saturdays but only in certain areas (not mine) AND that all this is going to be disregarded given the length of time this has gone on for and the mess they have made of the whole thing.

    So where I am now is Lowri Beck have sent an email requesting a Saturday appointment for me which has had no response. They have kept me up to date that there is no response, but there is no response.

    I've never had a pre-payment meter before. I like NPower (their customer service is always polite and they have some good deals which I would like to take advantage of) but I don't know what I can do now.

    I suspect hassling Lowri Beck will not resolve anything and if I change providers won't the new one also use Lowri Beck to try and change the meter?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated as I feel like I'm losing a lot of money by being on pre-payment meters at the moment but I don't know how to get the meters changed without wasting another days holiday.
    Originally posted by Eucalyptus84

    It's annoying when suppliers (or their agents) fail to keep to pre-booked appointments isn't it? But as you say, emergencies do happen.

    However, that is why there is now a requirement in place to pay compensation when they fail to attend a pre-booked appointment, which they appear to have done.

    You should be able to book a 2 hour time slot, so there is no need to take all day off work - just the couple of hours if that. Perhaps request an ear;ly appointment, or a late one - I think they work up until 8pm weekdays (so you should be able to select a 6pm-8pm slot)

    It's strange they do not allow Saturday morning bookings, as I know many suppliers also cater for this.

    But it's in your interest to get the meters switched as soon as possible - the sooner they are switched, the sooner you can start making savings on your energy bills
    The supplier will need access to your property and meter to do this (yes they will need access to inside to check, even if the meter is outside)
    Is there any family member or friend that could allow the supplier access if you really cannot be at the property yourself?
    Or speak to your employer nicely, explain the situation, and hopefully they will allow you a couple of hours off to attend to this matter - especially if you offer to make it up at some other time

    Good luck!
    Last edited by footyguy; 02-11-2017 at 1:57 PM.
    • Eucalyptus84
    • By Eucalyptus84 2nd Nov 17, 2:00 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Eucalyptus84
    • #4
    • 2nd Nov 17, 2:00 PM
    • #4
    • 2nd Nov 17, 2:00 PM
    Thank you - given that you have both said the time it takes to change the meter is less than half a day I might try insisting that they visit in the evening or early morning so that I can do it without taking a holiday. I suspect I might have more joy with this than trying to get a Saturday appointment.

    Thank you both!
  • nPower
    • #5
    • 2nd Nov 17, 6:07 PM
    • #5
    • 2nd Nov 17, 6:07 PM
    Hi all,

    We bought our first home together in April/May this year. Prior to us there was a tenant living in the property and there are pre-payment meters for the electricity and the gas. After a little investigating we found that NPower are the provider. I called them and changed the details on the accounts checking that I can get the meters removed at any time (which they said would be fine.)

    A few months later after we were settled I sorted out an appointment to get them both changed. As each appointment apparently takes half a day I had to book one for the morning and one for the afternoon. No problem, I booked a day off work so that I could sign their piece of paper or whatever was required (both meters are outside the property).

    The day arrives and Lowri Beck (the company that deal with meter switches) cancel the morning appointment. When I ask about the afternoon they say that one is fine and the technician should even be able to do both in the afternoon. The guy never shows up. When I speak to Lowri Beck again apparently there was an emergency so I should wait... which I did and the guy never arrives. Both companies apologise and NPower send out two separate credits for the meters to the tune of £30 which were supposed to appear on my card/key respectively but only show up for the electricity meter.

    Fine. Emergencies happen but now I've told Lowri Beck that I'd like a Saturday appointment as I'm not willing to take another "holiday" from work to have them fail to turn up. This was at the end of July.

    It is now November. I have been in touch with Lowri Beck multiple times and have heard that NPower don't do Saturdays... that they DO visit on Saturdays but only in certain areas (not mine) AND that all this is going to be disregarded given the length of time this has gone on for and the mess they have made of the whole thing.

    So where I am now is Lowri Beck have sent an email requesting a Saturday appointment for me which has had no response. They have kept me up to date that there is no response, but there is no response.

    I've never had a pre-payment meter before. I like NPower (their customer service is always polite and they have some good deals which I would like to take advantage of) but I don't know what I can do now.

    I suspect hassling Lowri Beck will not resolve anything and if I change providers won't the new one also use Lowri Beck to try and change the meter?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated as I feel like I'm losing a lot of money by being on pre-payment meters at the moment but I don't know how to get the meters changed without wasting another days holiday.
    Originally posted by Eucalyptus84




    Hi Eucalyptus84

    Thank you for posting, I'm sorry to hear you are experiencing problems with the meter changes. I will be happy to take a look at this if you would like to send me an email (using the address from my profile) with your account details.

    Thanks

    Vicky
    Official Company Representative"
    I am the official company representative of nPower. MSE has given permission for me to post in response to queries about the company, so that I can help solve issues. You can see my name on the companies with permission to post list. I am not allowed to tout for business at all. If you believe I am please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com This does NOT imply any form of approval of my company or its products by MSE.
    If we ask you to contact us, please do so using helpandsupport@npower.com - MSE Forum has temporarily allowed the display of our contact details in our signature due to a technical issue with our profile
    • House Martin
    • By House Martin 2nd Nov 17, 7:19 PM
    • 622 Posts
    • 543 Thanks
    House Martin
    • #6
    • 2nd Nov 17, 7:19 PM
    • #6
    • 2nd Nov 17, 7:19 PM
    Hi all,

    We bought our first home together in April/May this year. Prior to us there was a tenant living in the property and there are pre-payment meters for the electricity and the gas. After a little investigating we found that NPower are the provider. I called them and changed the details on the accounts checking that I can get the meters removed at any time (which they said would be fine.)

    A few months later after we were settled I sorted out an appointment to get them both changed. As each appointment apparently takes half a day I had to book one for the morning and one for the afternoon. No problem, I booked a day off work so that I could sign their piece of paper or whatever was required (both meters are outside the property).

    The day arrives and Lowri Beck (the company that deal with meter switches) cancel the morning appointment. When I ask about the afternoon they say that one is fine and the technician should even be able to do both in the afternoon. The guy never shows up. When I speak to Lowri Beck again apparently there was an emergency so I should wait... which I did and the guy never arrives. Both companies apologise and NPower send out two separate credits for the meters to the tune of £30 which were supposed to appear on my card/key respectively but only show up for the electricity meter.

    Fine. Emergencies happen but now I've told Lowri Beck that I'd like a Saturday appointment as I'm not willing to take another "holiday" from work to have them fail to turn up. This was at the end of July.

    It is now November. I have been in touch with Lowri Beck multiple times and have heard that NPower don't do Saturdays... that they DO visit on Saturdays but only in certain areas (not mine) AND that all this is going to be disregarded given the length of time this has gone on for and the mess they have made of the whole thing.

    So where I am now is Lowri Beck have sent an email requesting a Saturday appointment for me which has had no response. They have kept me up to date that there is no response, but there is no response.

    I've never had a pre-payment meter before. I like NPower (their customer service is always polite and they have some good deals which I would like to take advantage of) but I don't know what I can do now.

    I suspect hassling Lowri Beck will not resolve anything and if I change providers won't the new one also use Lowri Beck to try and change the meter?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated as I feel like I'm losing a lot of money by being on pre-payment meters at the moment but I don't know how to get the meters changed without wasting another days holiday.
    Originally posted by Eucalyptus84
    It would be quicker to switch supplier to BG or EDF and then get them to switch the meters...EDF are pretty good at that and their credit checks are not as stringent as BG.You may pass Npowers checks but possibly fail BGs
    Lowri Beck are useless.. I used to work for them in 1997..Awful disorganised little outfit. They don t seem to have improved much since then
    • Eucalyptus84
    • By Eucalyptus84 14th Nov 17, 7:13 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Eucalyptus84
    • #7
    • 14th Nov 17, 7:13 PM
    • #7
    • 14th Nov 17, 7:13 PM
    Just checking back in as I found the motivation to call Lowri Beck again today.

    I called them after my last post and attempted to arrange a weekday late evening or early morning appointment. Another email was fired off to scheduling and as usual I heard nothing back.

    I called them again today to follow this up. There was no news so I told them that I have got the day off on December the 1st (Friday) and so could I have an appointment on this day. She offered to send an email to scheduling and I asked her to contact them directly and find out.

    Some hold minutes later (these calls are costing me money as well) she came back to offer me an appointment on Wednesday, 22nd November. They don't operate past 6pm (my normal work day finishing time) and they couldn't give an earlier (or more precise) slot that 8am-10am. I told her this was unacceptable as I'm not taking additional time off just for them to stand me up again.

    Apparently there are no appointments at all on Friday, December 1st. I was getting upset by this point and kept telling her how our flat is cold because we are reluctant to use the heating as the gas meter gobbles our money so quickly (true, although recently I have used it a few times in the morning and evening on especially cold days). But the biggest deterrent is the fact that the gas meter is located outside in front of someone else's ground floor flat and I have to hop a low hedge and walk through wet grass (in the dark at this time of year) in order to top it up or check how much credit we have left.

    Back to the call; my resolve broken I told her to get me an appointment for the 1st of December. I said it was absurd that this has been going on since the end of July with no progress what so ever. I don't care what they have to do (make it an emergency appointment or whatever) but I WANT an appointment on the 1st December. She asked to put me on hold again so she could speak with her team leader/manager.

    When she came back she informed me that scheduling were no longer available (they'd gone home for the day) but her manager would call me back tomorrow morning after speaking with them to get me an appointment for the 1st. Nothing was promised and I hung up no better than I was before and considerably more upset and no doubt another phone bill with additional calls on it coming my way.

    Vicky: Thank you, I will send you an email after posting this. However, I can make no guarantees that I will be staying with NPower after this mess. I appreciate that it is not NPower directly messing me around but as good as your customer service is I feel that a lot can be inferred about a company from who they choose to use as their proxy's, and I cannot think of ANY good reason you would choose a company that treats customers this poorly!

    House Martin: Thank you; a formal complaint against Lowri Beck raised with the ombudsman and moving to another provider will be my next move after they fail to call me back tomorrow morning. We should be ok with any credit checks the meters were installed for the previous tenant before we bought the flat.

    If anyone knows a free number I can call to listen to Lowri Beck's hold music that would be greatly appreciated :-(
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