• My home is connected to a Community Energy Centre – what does that mean?

    Your heating and hot water comes from an on-site energy centre feeding hot water to the Heat Interface Unit (HIU) in your home.

    The energy centre contains all the equipment needed to generate, store, pump and control the site-wide heating system. This includes a Combined Heat and Power engine (CHP) – a modern and efficient way of producing energy that helps to reduce carbon emissions.

  • How does my meter work?

    Your heat meter sends us accurate readings of the energy you use. You can see how much energy you’re using on the Customer Display Unit on your HIU.

    If you question the accuracy of any heating meter, we’ll carry out an inspection and the meter may be sent for testing. If the meter is faulty, you won’t be charged for testing and we’ll refund the cost of any heat charged in error. If the meter is accurate, you must pay the cost of the test.


    Your home is fitted with a highly accurate heat meter, and cooling meter where available, so you can be confident that SSE will charge you only for the heating or cooling you use. There is a display unit on the meter which gives you information on your heat, hot water or cooling consumption.

    The meter sends SSE details about the heat or cooling energy you use. We use this information to make sure your bill is accurate and not based on an estimated reading.

    The meter(s) that you have in your property will depend on the Heat Network that supplies your heating, hot water and cooling (where applicable). A typical heat meter is the Sharky Hydrometer. A user guide for this meter can be found here.

  • What are the benefits of a Community Energy System?

    We include maintenance – and eventual replacement – of the HIU and meter in our charges. There are no hidden extras or emergency charges.

    If there’s a problem with your heating supply and the fault isn’t caused by you, there will be no additional charges to fix it.

    The HIUs in your home provide heating and hot water instantly on demand, so there’s no hot water cylinder and less heat loss.

    We use smart metering, so you’re only charged for the heat and cooling you use, with no estimated readings.

    We’ll regularly inspect your HIU and meter to make sure they are working efficiently.

  • What equipment is in my home?

    Your home is fitted with a Heat Interface Unit (HIU), a heat meter and, if we supply your cooling, a cooling meter. The meter is part of the HIU, visible on the Customer Display Unit.

    Please don’t adjust the controls on the HIU as this will affect its efficiency.

  • Am I responsible for the equipment in my home?

    The HIUs and meters are owned by us, but we don’t own the radiators, heating programmers or thermostats in your home. If there is a fault with these, please contact your landlord, housing association or a plumber.

  • Will you need access to my home?

    We’ll sometimes need access for routine maintenance. If we do need to visit, we’ll contact you in advance. We may also need access in an emergency.

  • What equipment is owned by the company?

    We own all the equipment in the energy centre and the heat (and cooling) distribution pipes supplying your property.

    We also own the HIU and heat meter in your property.

    If your home is supplied with cooling, we only own the cooling meter. We don’t own the cooling pipes or the fan coil unit.

  • How safe is this system?

    Most heat through the year is provided by the Combined Heat and Power (CHP) engine. Boilers provide back-up heating during cold periods.

    The thermal store in the energy centre stores extra heat for use during high demand. It also provides back-up heating and hot water if there is a short term problem with the boilers or CHP engine.

  • What if I have a problem or fault?

    Please call us on 0800 316 2194. Our fault line is open 24/7, 365 days a year.

    Please note: the HIU contains hot, pressurised water so it’s essential that only our staff or contractors work on it. Do not get a plumber to work on the HIU.

  • What will I pay?

    Your heat and cooling price is clearly linked to published domestic energy prices. It’s measured by the meter in your home in pence per kilowatt hour (kWh).

    To work out your variable heat charges, we calculate the average current domestic Direct Debit gas charges of the six largest suppliers in your area. We apply an efficiency factor to this to convert the gas price to your heat price.

    Similarly, we use current domestic Direct Debit electricity charges to set your cooling price.

    The ‘standing’ or ‘fixed’ charge covers our operating costs, including equipment in your home and our energy centre. It also covers the cost of our call-out response and customer service facilities.

    The capital fund replacement charge pays for the replacement of the energy centre equipment and the Heat Interface Unit and meter in your home when they reach the end of their operating lives.

    We review all charges once each year. Actual charges vary slightly from site to site because costs on each network are different.

  • What is a Direct Customer Agreement?

    This is your supply contract with us and sets out our charges. It also gives you information on our Guaranteed Standards and the terms in which we will supply heat, hot water and cooling to you.

  • Should I take meter readings when I move in to a property?

    When you move into a property supplied by SSE Heat Networks, please take a moment to record your meter readings, and contact us to set up your account. You should also take meter readings when you move out, so that we can close your account.

  • I want to take a meter reading but the display on my meter is blank

    Meters can enter sleep mode to save energy. Don’t worry, your meter will still record your heat and cooling consumption. To wake the meter and take your meter reading, simply press the button on your meter.

    For most meter types, you will only need to press the button once to display your energy meter reading. Your heat or cooling meter reading will be displayed in kilowatt hours (kWh) or megawatt hours (MWh). We use this reading to calculate your heating, hot water or cooling energy consumption. Pressing the button multiple times will scroll through other measures of your supply, such as the flow rate or temperature of your supply.

  • How to read and submit your meter reading

    Your heat meter is usually located near your HIU. All meters are read automatically and will send readings through to our billing system daily, this is so you are billed accurately on a quarterly basis. In some instances, we might not be able to obtain these readings regularly. If you do receive an estimated bill you can provide your reading by telephone, email, or submit this using your online account.

    If the meter is blank (no display), press the black button. This will then display the meter reading, it will state a number with the letter’s kWh. This is your current meter reading. If you skip past this screen, don’t worry, keep pressing the button until you are back to this screen.

    If you are experiencing any issues, please ring our customer service team on 0345 078 3215 who will be more than happy to assist you further.

  • What is prepayment and how does it work?

    Prepayment requires you to pay in advance for your energy consumption. This helps some customers to budget and not fall into arrears. When you top up via a payment card the credit will be transmitted directly to the prepayment hub without the need to insert the key/card. You can also top up via our customer service team who can take a payment over the telephone via debit or credit card and apply the credit remotely.

  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of prepayment?

    The advantages of a prepayment is the ability to prepay for the energy you use in advance which means you won’t receive bills or demands for payment. Please be aware that your fixed daily charges will still apply and you may fall into arrears if you do not keep up with these payments. Paying this way allow you to track your energy usage and the amount you’re spending as you can see your credit reduce in near real time.

    The disadvantage of a prepayment is that when your credit runs out (£0.00) the supply will be disconnected until the prepayment hub is topped up again. With a credit meter there is no immediate loss of supply. We do offer our prepayment customers an emergency credit facility of £5 or £10 depending on your area but this will need to be paid back on the next top up.

  • How to top up a prepayment meter

    You will be provided a dedicated prepayment top up card. This will only work with the prepayment hub we assign it to. Top ups can be made at any PayPoint outlet and we recommend customers keep a copy of all receipts. You can locate your nearest PayPoint location online at https://consumer.paypoint.com/. All credits will be sent directly to your prepayment meter remotely.

    Alternatively, you can top up by calling our customer service team and paying with your debit or credit card. The credit will remotely be sent to your prepayment hub once the payment is authorised.

  • My top up has not reached my prepayment hub

    If for some reason the communication is down between our servers and your prepayment hub, you’re able to top up via the 20-digit code which will be displayed on your receipt or provided by one of our team. This code can be entered on the prepayment hub to apply the credit.

  • What happens if my prepayment hub runs out of credit?

    Once your credit runs out (is down to £0.00) the supply will switch off. There is an emergency credit facility which enables you to go into arrears of £5 or £10 depending on your area. This provides you with time to top up. You’ll need to rop up £1 more than the amount of emergency credit which has been used to put your balance back into credit. The emergency credit option will only be available once the credit has run down to zero (£0.00).

  • What to do if my prepayment hub is not working?

    If you experience any issues or faults customers can ring our customer service team who will attempt to diagnose the issue remotely. If we cannot we will instruct an engineer to attend your home.

  • Need help or advice?

    If you have any questions about your meter or your heating, hot water or cooling supply, please contact our customer service team by telephone on 0345 078 3215 or by email at community.energy@sse.com. Our customer service opening hours are 8am till 6pm weekdays.