Metering changes signal a move towards more accurate billing
Changes to your MPAN are coming, and they are likely to improve the accuracy of your bills. But what exactly will change?
How familiar are you with the components which make up your electricity bill? Incoming changes to the MPAN (an electricity meter’s digital “fingerprint”) could spell changes to pricing thanks to more accurate banding for transmission and distribution charges. This is likely to mean a number of things if your business has a large electricity supply.
First of all, though, a look at the MPAN. You’ve probably seen your electricity meter’s serial number when taking meter readings. The MPAN is a digital identification, which is in the vast majority of cases linked to a single serial number – this is how suppliers identify your meter and subsequently know which supply to charge for. The MPAN itself consists of a string of numbers and letters, divided up into sections to denote things like location and distributor ID.
So what exactly is changing? The highlighted section of the MPAN below is known as the Line Loss Factor Class (LLFC). This identifies a meter’s banding for Use of Systems (UoS) charges, conveniently divided up into transmission (TUoS) and distribution (DUoS). These essentially refer to the charges incurred from using the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS), representing the amount of your bill which goes to NETS operators (such as the National Grid) and regional distributors (DNOs). The important thing to note is that TUoS and DUoS make up, on average, just under a fifth of your total electricity bill.
The LLFC is currently a three-digit numeric code, meaning there are only so many available bandings for UoS charges. As of the 30th June, this will become an alphanumeric modifier, including letters (excluding I and O) as well as numbers. This allows for more possible combinations, meaning that UoS charges will theoretically become more personalised and therefore more accurate.
A broader spectrum of UoS bandings may only have a minimal impact on your bill, but it is a significant step forward for precise billing. As far as bill validation goes, it is important that the systems used by your business are capable of processing the change; even more so if you use a broker or consultancy, to ensure that your records match up with theirs.
Ultimately, while is likely to only have a small effect on how much you pay, this change is vital to ensuring you are being billed as accurately as possible. We strongly hope that this is the first step of many in a move towards cutting out inaccurate billing entirely.
In the meantime, however, we advise that you pay close attention to your energy bills – you never know what level of savings can be unearthed unless you look!