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Smart meters could help EV drivers cut bills

Electric charging a car

Energy minister Claire Perry has hailed OVO Energy for its “innovative” electric vehicle (EV) products - enabled by smart meters - which could see owners save and even make money from their electric cars.

OVO Energy is one of just a few companies already using smart meters to offer products, such as rewarding customers for charging their EVs at off-peak times.

These offers, made possible thanks to a smart meter, help customers use energy at times when there is less demand on the grid, in turn saving money on their bills, says OVO.

Smart charging and Vehicle to Grid (V2G) charging could become a cornerstone of the way we use energy in the UK, with more than 8 million people in Britain considering buying or leasing an EV in the next five years. With this technology, customers will not only be able to choose to use energy at the cheapest times but also make money by selling energy from their vehicle’s battery at times when it is most in demand, says OVO. This will support the growth of renewable energy generation in the UK.

Smart energy innovations, such as smart tariffs and smart charging, could save the UK as much as £40bn between now and 2050.

Smart meters also support OVO’s intelligent platform VCharge, which is enabling residential appliances such as electric vehicles, electric heaters and in-home batteries to help balance the grid and reduce energy costs.

Energy and clean growth minister Claire Perry said: “More than 11 million meters are already empowering consumers to reap the rewards of a smarter energy system, putting homes and small businesses on the road to a smarter future.

“Smart meters will be the cornerstone of a cleaner, flexible and efficient energy system, saving the country tens of billions of pounds.

“New innovative products and tariffs like these will put consumers in the fast lane when it comes to control of their energy use, saving and even making them money when using their electric vehicles.” 

Stephen Fitzpatrick, CEO and founder of OVO, said: “The smart meter rollout is a huge and complicated programme. However, there’s no question it needs to be done as we can’t build the energy system of the future unless we know accurately how much energy people are using and when.

“OVO is using technology like electric vehicles, smart electric heat and batteries to help lower energy bills for consumers and enable us to use more renewable energy. None of this technology will work without smart metering.

“We welcome the Government’s recent efforts to improve the delivery of smart meters but there is still more work to do.”

At OVO’s offices, the minister also met with their smart meter installation engineers, who undergo thorough training ahead of installations. 

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  • Rosco7010 - 20/08/2018 07:42

    Whilst smart meters initially may save drivers of EV's money, with lower electricity tariffs and the ability to provide electricity back to the grid during peak demand. Eventually Smart Meters will lead to much higher time of use charging. What that will mean is if you need to charge your car Monday to Thursday night, with the majority of commuting EV car users, you will pay a premium. The saving will ultimately only be available to those whose use of an EV is off peak. I think the best solution will be a large solar PV roof coupled with a home battery storage, where you can charge your car from home generated electricity. Then sell any surplus back to the grid. Unfortunately for new applicants the rate for electricity sold back to the grid is a much lower rate than the electricity you buy.

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