With energy bills at a record high, new research has shown that more than half (59 per cent) of Scots with a smart meter are monitoring their gas and electricity use much more closely this year. 

The survey of 200 Scottish adults, carried out by OnePoll on behalf of Smart Energy GB, discovered that 91 per cent of respondents find their smart meter in-home display useful, with 44 per cent using it more this winter than last.

Over half (56 per cent) said that the most useful feature was being able to see their energy use in pounds and pence. 

This increased monitoring has led to an enhanced awareness of energy costs, with 34 per cent saying that they have a better understanding of what they are paying for electricity and gas this winter than last.

People with smart meters are monitoring their usage more closely. © Archi-Viz / Shutterstock

Over three quarters (73 per cent) of respondents said that they know how much their household is spending on electricity this year, while 68 per cent said they know how much they are paying for gas. 

Smart meters are having a positive impact in helping people feel more on top of things too, with 39 per cent of respondents stating that being able to check their energy consumption on their in-home display makes them feel in control, and 28 per cent saying it makes them feel organised.  

With talk of bills increasing into spring, 62 per cent of smart meter owners have taken more steps to reduce their energy consumption this year than last, with 86 per cent implementing at least one new energy saving habit this winter.

These include turning off lights in a room no-one is using (43 per cent), wearing extra clothes to keep warm (43 per cent), only boiling the water they need in the kettle (41 per cent) and switching devices off rather than leaving them on standby (33 per cent).  

And, armed with a good understanding of their energy use, 58 per cent said that they are interested in initiatives offered by their energy company to pay them to use less energy, such as National Grid ESO’s Demand Flexibility Service.

‘Smart meters mean you only pay for the energy you actually use’

Victoria Bacon, director at Smart Energy GB, said: “At a time when energy prices are so high, many people are looking for ways to better monitor and manage their usage at home.  

“The in-home display which comes with your smart meter allows you to track and adjust your energy usage, as it provides near-real time information in pounds and pence about your gas and electricity use. As our survey demonstrates, people are finding this really helpful.  

“Smart meters also put an end to estimated bills and manual meter readings, which means no more scrabbling around in cupboards taking meter readings, and only paying for the energy you actually use.”