Smart meter installation issue

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  • QrizB
    QrizB Posts: 13,822 Forumite
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    The DNO is the Distribution Network Operator. They're the organisation responsible for the cables that supply your flat, and the substation they connect to, and the cables that feed the substation.
    Hopefully you won't need to contact them directly and EDF will arrange for them to visit. But EDF are a bit hit-and-miss.
    N. Hampshire, he/him. Octopus Go elec & Tracker gas / Shell BB / Lyca mobi. Ripple Kirk Hill member.
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  • Looks like my dno is UK power networks, I guess I'll just wait for correspondence from edf and see where we go from there, thanks for everyone's responses
  • JSHarris
    JSHarris Posts: 374 Forumite
    First Post Name Dropper
    nobakup said:
    @JSHarris

    There's nothing under the cover, the cables disappear into plywood, behind the meter is my bathroom and kitchen, my next door neighbour is on one side about 5 or 6 meters away, also flats above and below. 

    Not sure what u mean by dno, do u mean the landlord will have to get involved? I'm in a block of council flats

    Thanks alot for your response, appreciate it

    That helps a lot.  Before going any further, do you know if the meter belongs to a supplier (or meter admin company) or does it belong to your landlord?  If it is a supplier managed meter then there should be something on it referring to an electricity company or even an old electricity board.  If there is then that makes things easier - landlord-owned meters can't be swapped by anyone other than the landlord.
    The cables coming into the meter probably come in from below as the room behind that wall is also part of your flat.  This suggests the main fuse is either in the flat below, or possibly in a service room or cupboard below.
    The DNO is the Distribution Network Operator, they own the cables coming into the property up to and including the main fuse head, and in this case they may or may not own the tails coming into your meter (ownership is a bit unclear, as this installation dates back to the old electricity boards who owned everything up to your consumer unit - things changed a great deal after privatisation).  There probably aren't any records as to who owns what, but with luck your supplier should be able to sort out the supply side of the meter.  It's definitely not your responsibility, as that stops at your side of the meter.  It is possible that the tails supplying your meter may belong to the landlord, purely for historical reasons, but they shouldn't now be their property under the changes that happened 40 odd years ago.
    Although your supplier should be able to sort this out, by sending around someone qualified to work on the incoming supply cables (i.e.probably not a meter monkey) it would almost certainly ease things a great deal if your could find out where the incomer and fuse head is.  Perhaps ask the neighbour below if they may be able to help, or take a look to see if there's a publicly accessed cupboard down there with the fuse head in?  Councils were usually pretty good at this stuff, years ago, although I doubt that anyone around today would have a clue.  Councils used to have a works and bricks person that was very often a goldmine of information about their properties, something that disappeared when they started contracting services out, unfortunately.
  • @jsharris there's an edf sticker on the meter saying do not tamper, although I was with British gas when I first moved in.

    Thanks for your explanations, very helpful! 
  • JSHarris
    JSHarris Posts: 374 Forumite
    First Post Name Dropper
    nobakup said:
    @jsharris there's an edf sticker on the meter saying do not tamper, although I was with British gas when I first moved in.

    Thanks for your explanations, very helpful! 

    That removes one challenge, as it means that the cables from the fuse to the meter either "belong" to your supplier (or more likely a meter admin company they use) or they belong to your DNO, UKPN.  My money is on those cables being the responsibility of your supplier, so that means a single point of contact to get things sorted,
    Still be useful if you can trace where the fuse is, as that would very much help whoever they send out to do the work and fit the new smart meter.
  • JSHarris said:

    ...They aren't usually qualified or authorised to work on the incoming side of the installation beyond the meter connections, nor are they permitted to work on the consumer side, after the meter.

    My installer did.  He did not like the type of connection used to join the output from my solar panels to the house supply so rewired them.  He also moved the CT clamp monitoring the power input to the house to the wrong side of his new connections; I had to put it back after he left.
    Reed
  • What do you mean by DNO, dunno?  No, actually it stands for Distribution Network Operator, the company that is responsible for the electricity supply infrastructure in your region.
    Reed
  • JSHarris
    JSHarris Posts: 374 Forumite
    First Post Name Dropper
    edited 20 December 2023 at 5:53PM
    JSHarris said:

    ...They aren't usually qualified or authorised to work on the incoming side of the installation beyond the meter connections, nor are they permitted to work on the consumer side, after the meter.

    My installer did.  He did not like the type of connection used to join the output from my solar panels to the house supply so rewired them.  He also moved the CT clamp monitoring the power input to the house to the wrong side of his new connections; I had to put it back after he left.

    The problem there is that he was doing work on your equipment for which he was neither qualified nor authorised.  There's no way that he would have had an MCS chit, so the work may well have been done unlawfully.  Given the minimal training they get (they are trained to do essentially a single task, and are really DIY'ers if they try anything outside their scope) I'd seriously question whether the work done was safe and to the correct requirements.  The fact that he put the  CT back in the wrong location rather proves this, it's a pretty rookie error.
  • MeteredOut
    MeteredOut Posts: 1,288 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Name Dropper
    JSHarris said:
    JSHarris said:

    ...They aren't usually qualified or authorised to work on the incoming side of the installation beyond the meter connections, nor are they permitted to work on the consumer side, after the meter.

    My installer did.  He did not like the type of connection used to join the output from my solar panels to the house supply so rewired them.  He also moved the CT clamp monitoring the power input to the house to the wrong side of his new connections; I had to put it back after he left.

    The problem there is that he was doing work on your equipment for which he was neither qualified nor authorised.  There's no way that he would have had an MCS chit, so the work may well have been done unlawfully.  Given the minimal training they get (they are trained to do essentially a single task, and are really DIY'ers if they try anything outside their scope) I'd seriously question whether the work done was safe and to the correct requirements.  The fact that he put the  CT back in the wrong location rather proves this, it's a pretty rookie error.
    I've read (across various forums) about multiple incidents of MCS qualified installers putting the CT clamps on the wrong way round.
  • JSHarris
    JSHarris Posts: 374 Forumite
    First Post Name Dropper
    edited 20 December 2023 at 6:48PM
    JSHarris said:
    JSHarris said:

    ...They aren't usually qualified or authorised to work on the incoming side of the installation beyond the meter connections, nor are they permitted to work on the consumer side, after the meter.

    My installer did.  He did not like the type of connection used to join the output from my solar panels to the house supply so rewired them.  He also moved the CT clamp monitoring the power input to the house to the wrong side of his new connections; I had to put it back after he left.

    The problem there is that he was doing work on your equipment for which he was neither qualified nor authorised.  There's no way that he would have had an MCS chit, so the work may well have been done unlawfully.  Given the minimal training they get (they are trained to do essentially a single task, and are really DIY'ers if they try anything outside their scope) I'd seriously question whether the work done was safe and to the correct requirements.  The fact that he put the  CT back in the wrong location rather proves this, it's a pretty rookie error.
    I've read (across various forums) about multiple incidents of MCS qualified installers putting the CT clamps on the wrong way round.

    Yes, I'm not saying that MCS certification alone is a panacea, but meter monkeys are usually far less qualified than even solar panel installers (and often solar panel installers aren't electricians, either).
    The key issue here is that this was unauthorised work carried out by someone that almost certainly didn't have the competence to do it.  It's the consumers responsibility to ensure everything their side of the meter is safe and compliant, and it might be interesting to find out what an insurer has to say if, heaven forbid, this non-compliant repair work was the cause of damage that was part of a claim.  Until recently insurers have been pretty laid back about damage, fires etc caused by unauthorised electrical work, but I've heard of a few cases now where insurers have got a bit more hard nosed about assessing claims where they suspect that the cause, or a contributory factor, was non-compliant work that the policy holder was aware of.
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