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Why should I compare and switch energy suppliers?

Over the past couple of years, energy prices have risen at an unprecedented rate. And although they’ve have started to fall, they’re still considerably higher than they were during the first half of 2021. With a home energy comparison, you could potentially find yourself a better deal.

What does that better deal look like in the current market? The latest Energy Price Cap is currently set at £1,834 a year until 31 December – this is for the typical UK household using gas and electricity and paying via Direct Debit. Energy suppliers are starting to offer fixed household deals again too, which could also help you lock in at a lower rate.

Here, at Utility Bidder, we can help you identify any better deals on the market from the UK’s most trusted energy providers. It only takes a couple of minutes to compare, get an energy quote and start your switch. Your new supplier will handle all the hard work, ensuring your switch is smooth and there’s no loss of supply.

Spike in energy prices

Why is energy so expensive in the UK?

Energy prices hit record levels in 2022 due to several factors – Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, rising demand post-COVID and the harsh winter in 2021 / 2022 which saw gas reserves depleted being just a few.

Prices are still higher than in 2021, but there is good news – they have started to fall. And the latest Energy Price Cap (October) is set to £1,834 per year for the average household.

However, it’s important to remember if you use more than the average household, you’ll pay more for your gas and electricity bills. The price cap only covers the unit charge. Your bill is dependent on where you live, your energy consumption and your payment method.

Gas and electricity bills

What is the Energy Price Guarantee?

The Energy Price Guarantee (EPG) was introduced by the government to support households with gas and electricity bills. It’s designed to freeze the Energy Price Cap – currently set at £3,000 per year for the average household until April 2024. However, with October’s Energy Price Cap being £1,834 per year, the EPG won’t come into effect unless the next price cap is forecast to be above £3,000.

Customers on pre-payment meters will continue to receive a discount on gas standing charges from 1 October 2023.

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How to compare energy prices

Comparing energy prices is easy with Utility Bidder. We’ll help you see if you can save money by switching to a cheaper gas and electricity supplier. To start your comparison, you’ll need:

  • your supplier and tariff name
  • your energy consumption (in kWh / pounds)

We’ll help you compare energy tariffs from across the market. If you find a better deal and decide to switch, you don’t need to worry. The process of switching from one supplier to another will be handled without you needing to get involved. And your supply won’t be interrupted either.

Frequently asked questions

Reducing usage is a good place to start. Such as switching off power when possible and using devices efficiently.

However, the major influence on your home gas and electricity bills will be down to the tariff that your on. If your paying inflated rates then it will be near to impossible to reduce costs without changing or switching.

We work with the UK’s most respected suppliers and will find you the best deal for your home gas or electric.

It’s not just how high you like your heating to be over the winter that affects how much you pay for energy throughout the year. How much your bills are every month will depend on:

-The size of your home
-The number of residents
-The age of your property
-The kinds of lightbulbs
-The age of your boiler
-Whether you have double glazing

One of the most understated factors affecting your energy costs will be how long you have been with your existing energy supplier. Don’t assume that by staying with the same energy companies that you’ll be paying less. Switching to new gas and electric companies can have a dramatic effect on how much your annual bills come to.

Although there are always going to be variations depending on your tariffs and your energy-saving strategies at home, 1-2-bedroom properties in the UK can generally expect to pay just under £800 a year on a dual fuel bill. Larger homes will require more energy, and that means that 3-4-bedroom homes can expect to have an annual dual fuel energy bill of around £1,160. Breaking this down sees that the average gas bill is slightly less than electricity, although this will also be affected by the type of property that you live in.

Accuracy is vital if you want to take more control over your average kWh per day UK. Take the time to understand more about what your bills are breaking down for you and identify where you can make improvements to your energy use. There are solutions available if you think that you are paying too much on energy, and by taking a proactive approach to your gas and electricity consumption, you could alleviate much of the ongoing strain on your bank balance.

When you look at your energy bill, it is often broken down so that it is more easily understandable. However, this breakdown won’t provide much insight into the various aspects of energy that will dictate the final cost. Many factors make up an energy bill, and it’s not all about how much gas and electricity you have used. You will also have additional costs, including:

-Current wholesale cost of gas and electric: This is the amount of money that your energy supplier pays for the gas and electricity that you use.
-Maintenance and Networking: The costs that it takes to ensure that gas pipes and electrical wires are maintained so that you get unrestricted access to the energy you need. This cost can take up as much as a quarter of your bill.
-Operating costs: Your energy suppliers will have their own expenses that will need to be covered. As a result, as much as 17% of your total annual bills will go towards this.

Additionally, gas and electric companies will also have to contribute to government-backed initiatives intended to reduce emissions or save energy. Those costs will always come back to you, and you can expect to pay around 8% more on your bills because of these programs. Of course, VAT will also be included in your energy bill, adding even more to the total.

It used to be that UK households were extremely limited in terms of choosing their energy providers. Now, consumers have a variety of options to consider when looking at gas and electric companies. If you think that you are paying more than you should be, switching to new suppliers has never been easier, and could result in a much healthier and more affordable energy bill every month.

There are a lot of factors to take into account when trying to work out the average cost of home energy in the UK. Insulation will be a major issue, as will the times of day that your home energy is being used. That means there will always be variations in your bills even when compared to your neighbours. Ofgem, the government department that regulates the energy industry, has broken down energy consumption into three distinct user types. Where you fall in the three categories will depend on your average kWh per day UK. For gas use, these are:

Low: Homes that use 8,000kWh

Medium: Homes that use 12,000kWh

High: Homes that use 17,000kWh

In these extremely tight economic times, it has become more important than ever that you take control of your energy bills. As the monthly bills coming piling in, paying too much to heat and run your home can quickly start to have a negative impact on your bank balance. Luckily, there are plenty of things that you can do to improve the energy efficiency of your home. Finding home energy savings solutions has never been easier. So, if you’re tired of paying over the odds on your energy use, here are some tips that will make your home much more energy-efficient.

Improve your Insulation

By far the most effective way of getting your heating bills down, insulation should always be a priority. Older houses especially need to make sure that they have enough insulation, as those older properties are often lacking. Ensure that the empty space of your loft is well insulated, but remember to pay attention to your cavity walls as well. When your heat can easily seep through to the great outdoors, investing in insulation is one of the most beneficial home energy savings solutions.

Boiler Upgrades

If your boiler is inefficient, then it will cause your energy bills to skyrocket. Not only will upgrading your boiler help to slash your monthly bills, but it will also have a dramatic impact on your carbon footprint as well. Check your boiler to see what efficiency rating it has. Boilers are rated alphabetically, with A being the most efficient and G being the worst. If your boiler is rated at the lower end of the spectrum, then it might be time to look at upgrades for improved energy use and increased savings.

Protect Entrance and Exit Points

Doors and windows are always going to be vulnerable points when it comes to letting heat out of your home. There are some very simple solutions to this that can transform your energy costs. Hang some heavy curtains over your windows so that heat has a harder time escaping, and your home will immediately feel warmer. If you have drafty doors, then some stick-on insulation tape can be purchased at very low prices, and that too will positively impact how much energy you need to use.

Pay Attention to Details

There are two things that you need to monitor at all times: your energy consumption and your energy prices. Energy monitors can help you take a lot more control over when and how you use your energy, and some energy providers will even let you have one for free. Make sure that it is easily visible to everyone in the home, and you’ll always know where you stand in terms of energy use. You should also take the time to check your energy bills. Double-check that you aren’t paying too much on your tariff. If you find that you are, then it’s a very simple process to switch to another provider.

Home energy savings solutions don’t have to cost the earth. Have a look at your energy bills, and understand how much you’re paying and why. If it seems like you’re wasting far too much and getting higher bills as a result, then it might be time to start taking a closer look at improving your home energy efficiency.

As of 2018, about 33% of the UK’s gas came from the UK, while the remaining gas came from European lines fed by Norway and other European countries, as well as LNG tankers.

The UK’s electricity is generated from fossil fuels, nuclear, renewable and imported energy.

Check your latest energy bill for the name of your gas or electricity supplier.

With a dual fuel plan you get your gas and electricity from the same energy supplier. This usually works out cheaper than a single fuel plan where you buy your gas and electricity from different suppliers.

This is because energy suppliers often offer discounts and reduced rates for dual fuel plans. Plus, with a dual fuel plan, you only have to deal with one energy company if you have any queries or problems with your gas and electricity.

Economy 7 refers to both the meter that tracks your electricity usage separately for day and night, and the tariff, which charges different rates for the day and night usage.

Economy 7 electricity tariffs work alongside Economy 7 meters to provide a different price per kWh based on your time of use. These tariffs are based around day and night-time usage, with electricity being cheaper at night but more expensive than normal during the day.

The Economy 7 cheaper rate period typically falls 7 hours between 10pm and 8.30am, but that period can vary across the country. Most variations depend on the type of meter you have, and what time of year it is (British Summer Time etc).

The easiest way to find out your exact Economy 7 hours is to look at your meter. Meters can vary, so on some meters it will tell you the hours next to the meter or on it.

For other meters you will need to take a note of your supply number which you can find on your meter or a recent bill and you can check your region on the map below.


We advise that currently an Economy 7 customer on our standard tariff with medium consumption of 4,300 kWh per annum (as defined by Ofgem in its Typical Domestic Consumption Values) would have to use a minimum of between 27% to 36% (depending on the area of the country in which they live) of their electricity at off peak times to make it more cost effective than being a standard single rate customer. These figures will necessarily vary according to the customer’s actual consumption, payment method and tariff.

Green energy is electricity or gas derived from renewable sources such as hydro energy, wind energy, solar energy and biomass.

Your energy bills are calculated on the basis of how many units of energy you consume. You may also pay a standing charge .

When your meter is read, the energy company will subtract the amount shown on the previous meter reading from the most recent one to work out your bill.

If your meter isn’t read, you will get an estimated bill based on your past use or a standard rate. Units of electricity are measured in kilowatt hours . This is shown on your electricity meter .

Gas meters measure the volume of gas you used in cubic feet or cubic meters and the gas companies convert this into kilowatt hours. The price charged for each unit of energy varies according to what pricing plan or tariff you are on.

Your gas and electricity bills should give:

  • your last meter reading (either estimated or based on your submission)
  • the amount of electricity or gas you’ve used in the billing period as well as an annual consumption
  • VAT charges
  • price per kWh
  • your plan name
  • your meter numbers

YouGov research found 60% of people find their energy bills confusing. They find it hard to understand the gas and electricity unit pricing and costs, and voted energy suppliers the worst offenders of confusing bills, beating water companies, mortgage lenders, councils and phone providers.

Have a look at the display panel on your Smart meter, normally it will be blank. Press button ‘A’ or ‘B’ to wake the screen up. Press button ‘A’ again to show the meter reading and make a note of the numbers including any zeros. There’s no need to note down any number(s) after the decimal point.

If you have a single rate meter: Always read the ‘R1’ register and simply write down the numbers from left to right.

If you have a two-rate meter: You’ll only need to read the ‘R1’ and ‘R2’ registers. Press button ‘A’ to cycle through the readings and write down each one as it appears.

If it’s peak time when you read the meter, the active register shows your Day/Normal rate reading. If it’s off peak the meter will show your Night/Low rate reading. You’ll notice that one of the registers has “Now” in the top right hand corner of the display. This shows your active register.

Credit meter customers
If you experience a power cut, simply call 105 for free.

105 is the new nationwide number that will put you through to your local electricity network operator – the company that manages the cables, wires and substations that bring electricity into local homes and businesses.

If your Network Distributor identifies that there’s not a problem with your supply, there could be a fault internally and you will need to call a qualified electrician. Before you do this, take a look at our power cut help page.

Prepayment customers – it’s worth checking…
Your meter may have run out of credit.

Check your meter display – if it shows an amount followed by ‘DEBT’, this means you’ve run out of credit. You’ll need to charge your key with the minimum amount displayed at your local outlet.

If the supply is off and you have credit on your meter, it’s likely there’s an internal fault in your home. Check your trip switches are set to ‘ON’. If this fault reoccurs or the trip switch fails to re-set. Please contact a qualified electrician.

If the screen on your meter has no displays when you press the blue button, then there may be a power cut in your area. Take a look at our power cut help page for more information.

First, check to see whether we’ve estimated your usage – this is shown in the title and will have the word ‘estimated’ in the header like this:

The meter readings shown on your bill will also have the words ‘estimated reading’ next to the date.

If your bill has been estimated, please supply your supplier with your own meter readings so your account can be updated with your actual usage.

If your bill isn’t based on an estimated reading, or if you have any general queries about the accuracy of your bill, talk to our live chat team.

This gives you a breakdown of how your energy bill is calculated. Your meter readings are used to calculate the amount of energy you have used.

Electricity is measured in kilowatt hours but gas gets convert into the same units for ease. Once the supplier knows the total amount of energy you have used in kilowatt hours, they apply their prices to work out the costs of your energy.

When you get your final bill will depend on things like your move out date, your account status and when you send us your meter readings.

You Should Provide:
New address
Date you stop/start being legally responsible for the properties
Final meter readings from your old home (unless you have a Smart meter)

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