Switch issue

Sorry if this is a long post but I don’t know where else to seek advice.

I signed up to Scottish power to be on direct debit. No issues with signing up online and my old provider was happy to do the switch. 

I was with British Gas on prepayment smet1 meter and I don’t have a ihd has was told if I got one I needed to pay and I refused to pay has the old tenant must of taken it with them.


Saturday my switch happened. I noticed my meters was still in prepayment mode. So am on the sp online chat being told I have to wait till the enters balance go to 0 and then they automatically register to credit mode. Okay so my gas was due to go and I watched my balance reach so low it was saying emergency and am like should it do that? I was asking is this right because I have no way of topping up has my online account shows direct debit mode and I was reassured that it won’t shut if the supply,So I left it and then the gas supply shut off and then the meter decided to go dead for some weird reason. So am back on the app chat trying to explain what’s happened and I was being told nonsense not once did they say let’s get a emergency engineer out, one point a agent told me you should be still topping up, at this point am like hello my account is in direct debit so I have no options of topping up! I wasn’t getting no where do I quickly found a number to call around 2pm and the agent told me I wasn’t even a customer at first till I said I am has my online British account is closed (I did log in to see if I could top up with them still) so she arranged a engineer to come round and change meter and told me when my electric goes to 0 I have to wait till that supply is gone and they send a engineer to change the meter, so got off phone 2:43pm Saturday, hours later it’s now 7:20pm no one turned up,I’m like something ain’t right here. 

Can’t call so I resume on the app chat again,agent told me no appointment was made and they arrange someone to come and they will call me when they are on their way. No one turned up. So today early morning I’m back on the app saying no one turned up, so they said it’s booked for 8am to 12pm today. So waited no one turned up at all, so then 11:34 I got impatient and went back on the app and told them no one turned up, so they was arranging a engineer to turn up once again and then I went to check the gas meter it suddenly decided to work. So I explained it’s now working and she cancelled the appointment. 

So I explained to her the issues am having and what to do with the meters has I can’t top up and one is in emergency and the other due to go into emergency. 

So they told me they need to put it in prepayment mode and that should be Tuesday when it’s done has takes a few days to register remotely (it’s already in prepayment mode?) so once it’s in prepayment mode I can then top up on my account has it show on the app I can and then they will remotely change it to credit. So am like okay what will happen Tuesday if I can’t top up and it hasn’t worked? They like just call us and will sort something out. So I said thanks for your help and left it there.

Am just confused to why my meters hasn’t registered to credit has am sure remotely they can just change it? I don’t get why my gas meter shut off for no reason? I’m angry how no engineer turned up and I was left with no gas all day Saturday and half the day Sunday like I couldn’t cook or even have a wash and I have a 3 year old at home but I made do. I don’t get why now am being told they need to remotely put  the meters in prepayment mode when they are already in prepayment mode and then they will do checks and then put it in credit mode? 

Im starting to think my meter didn’t register the switch and there is a fault somewhere and that the meters need changing. 

Im on emergency for both and literally can’t top up. It will last till Tuesday but I’m in my head thinking what happens Tuesday and my account doesn’t show I can top up? Then the gas goes and Electric? To wait for a ghost engineer to not come? I’m shocked aswell they told me to wait till I have no supply for them to even fix the meters aswell like huh I got a 3 year old with learning needs. I just don’t want it to come Tuesday and my supply goes and then I’m sat here for hours for a no show engineer.

I did sent two emails complaining of this to them has the agents all said different things. 

I want to know what advice I can get? Just really scared for Tuesday has I got a feeling the meters ain’t registering at all and their is a fault somewhere and then they make a appointment for a engineer not to show up.I don’t have family to stay with or even a friend if it happened and obviously once they arrange a engineer I have to be in my property,be okay in the day has my son attends nursery for the full day.

Any advice what I should do? I thought I would wait till Tuesday morning and then log in my account to see if I can top up or call citizens advice Monday morning. I’ve been in tears since the engineer didn’t show has I felt like an a bad parent for this to all happen. 
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Comments

  • elsien
    elsien Posts: 32,311
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    edited 17 December 2023 at 9:06PM
    Any chance you can bullet point that with the relevant information? It’s a bit long otherwise. 

    Ps -welcome to the forum, there are some helpful people here. It just helps if the posts aren’t so long, it puts people off reading them.
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
  • Gerry1
    Gerry1 Posts: 9,770
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    edited 17 December 2023 at 9:09PM
    Welcome to the forum.
    Make sure you're on SP's Priority Services Register.
    Register a formal complaint with SP and get a reference number.  Make a note of the date, time and agent's name.  That will show you're serious.  Don't be fobbed off with 'I'll feed it back'.
    You may well have more luck if you call 105, they're likely to have access to the right people who can sort things out quickly; most Customer Service people only read scripts from their screens.
    Don't forget to tell us how things went.
  • elsien said:
    Any chance you can bullet point that with the relevant information? It’s a bit long otherwise. 

    Ps -welcome to the forum, there are some helpful people here. It just helps if the posts aren’t so long, it puts people off reading them.
    thank you for welcoming me and okay.

    • switch started 16/12/23 meters not showing in credit mode
    • contacted sp to be told wait till balances are 0 and they switch to credit mode
    • gas went and meter went dead,so was a lie about meters changing when they go to 0
    • arranged for engineer to arrive saturday no one turned up, apparently one appointment wasn't made so one was done again for saturday night
    • sunday morning still no sign of engineer 
    • by time i contacted sp my gas meter turned on
    • been told they remotely do some changes so by tuesday it be in prepayment mode and i can top up
    • then they will do some checks and switch to credit mode
  • Gerry1 said:
    Welcome to the forum.
    Make sure you're on SP's Priority Services Register.
    Register a formal complaint with SP and get a reference number.  Make a note of the date, time and agent's name.  That will show you're serious.  Don't be fobbed off with 'I'll feed it back'.
    You may well have more luck if you call 105, they're likely to have access to the right people who can sort things out quickly; most Customer Service people only read scripts from their screens.
    Don't forget to tell us how things went.
    thank you for welcoming me
    i am on their psr just got a email today to confirm it. i've done that and today they've replied to me with nonsense, basically saying i requested the meter to be credit instead of prepayment when its not true, i signed up for direct debit so meters should remotely change? i can tell they was using scripts half the time. i just know tomorrow il wake up and  i cant top up my emergency is running low so roday am trying to find other people i can speak with and i will do.
  • JSHarris
    JSHarris Posts: 374
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    If you pay by direct debit then you need a credit meter, not a prepayment meter.  
    Some newer meters can be remotely changed from one mode to the other, some older meters can't, so need to be physically changed.  At a guess I'd say the majority of prepayment meters around can't yet be remotely changed to credit mode.
  • Gerry1
    Gerry1 Posts: 9,770
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    edited 18 December 2023 at 10:01AM
    Well done, those bullet points are a million times easier to understand !  Just one suggestion, spell out things that can be misunderstood, e.g.
    ★ 'gas went' - slightly ambiguous: supply went back on, OR you were cut off?
    ★ 'meter went dead' - couldn't make it display anything despite pushing buttons, OR you were cut off?
  • Gerry1
    Gerry1 Posts: 9,770
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    edited 18 December 2023 at 10:15AM
    Never use chat for anything except the simplest things.  You'll probably get AI which will be baffled or a minimum wage agent who is probably overseas, may not have English as a first language and certainly won't be able to tackle anything out of the ordinary.
    Instead, try a free call to 0800 027 800.
  • Beccaboo90 welcome to the forum, this sounds like a real horror story so far.
    The only good point I can see is that they've acknowledged you are on the PSR.

    Obviously none of us know whether the meters you have can be switched remotely, SP should know that, but the agents you've had so far probably haven't a clue. You may/should have more luck on that freephone call recommended by Gerry1.

    Two things I've spotted, they made two appointments, it doesn't matter if they actually failed to make the 2nd one, they told you they'd made them and they failed to turn up. You are entitled to compensation for each failed appointment.
    As @Gerry1 has mentioned, when you phone you need to make a formal complaint. Tell them you signed up to a Tariff with payment by Direct Debit and it was upto SP to take the necessary action to ensure that happened.

    Just because the gas meter started working again, it was unwise to cancel that (3rd?) engineer appointment.
    You need an engineer to turn up to ensure you have the right meters and they are in credit mode.
    IF you haven't got a further urgent engineer appointment (because you are on the PSR) phone again and complain and state "I'm making a formal complaint" I'm on the PSR and this still hasn't been resolved.

    You have a couple of options at this point.
    1a) Within the 14 days from the switch you cancel the switch and go back to BG with no penalty (that might assume you have remained on (working) pre-payment so far
    1b) Even if they've got you in credit mode, you might be able to cancel and go back to BG unless there's a reason you can't have credit mode with BG
    2) Wait until the dust settles on the switch either working credit mode or working prepayment and if SP are still messing you around consider a further change of supplier.

    What made you pick SP in the first place? What was the exact tariff you've signed up to?
  • I think you can check whether your SMETS1 meters have been 'updated' to be able to be switched remotely, or whether you need an engineer to come and do it.
    https://smartmetercheck.citizensadvice.org.uk/

    If yours are working in smart mode then they should have been able to be switched remotely, if not then I believe you'll need an engineer to come and do it.
  • In my experience you can often forget to mention everything in a chat laying out your complaint, get sidetracked by the responses on the call and then forget what they have said.

    I would use email as then everything is recorded for when you need it later

    [email protected]
    "I can lead you to the money saving well but cannot make you drink from it"

    As mum always said "don't respond to imbeciles just ignore them" wise words mum 
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