Meters - readings and estimates

Who should read the meter?

The distribution system operator is the owner of the meter. It installs, maintains and replaces the meter and is therefore responsible for regular meter readings.

For consumers with a contracted power of up to 41.4 kVA, the distribution system operator must ensure that the meter is read every three months.

Consumers must be informed of the date on which a direct reading will take place, or that an attempt has been made to read the meter but has been unsuccessful. In the latter case, the consumer is informed that he must submit the meter reading within the time limit set for this purpose.

The readings are sent by the distribution system operator to your supplier, who uses them for invoicing purposes. If the supplier does not have information on the actual meter reading, the invoice will be based on estimated consumption.

To avoid being invoiced the basis of estimated consumption, you can report your meter reading to your supplier on a monthly basis by the date shown on your invoices.

See the Misleading Practices Alert on reporting meter readings.


What is an extraordinary meter reading?

If the distribution system operator has not had access to the meter for four months and the consumer has not reported a reading, an extraordinary reading must be carried out.

The date for the extraordinary reading must be agreed between the consumer and the distribution system operator.

If there is no agreement on the date within 20 days of the consumer being notified, the supply may be cut off.

Extraordinary readings entail costs for the consumer, which are determined annually by ERSE.


How does the meter work?

The distribution system operator must provide you with information on how to read the meter information. If you have any questions, please contact the distribution system operator.

If you suspect that the meter is not working properly, you can request an extraordinary check. If the meter is found to be working properly after this check, you will be responsible for the cost of the check. If the meter is found to be faulty, the costs responsibility is of the distribution system operator.

You can consult the list of companies accredited to check meters on the website of the Portuguese Accreditation Institute (IPAC).