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Home / Insights / Industry news / The Radio Teleswitch Service (RTS) is shutting down – Here’s what it means for you

The Radio Teleswitch Service (RTS) is shutting down – Here’s what it means for you

If you currently use a Radio Teleswitch (RTS) or a Dynamically Teleswitched (DTS) electricity meter, it will soon need to be replaced. Here’s everything you need to know.

If you currently use a Radio Teleswitch (RTS) or a Dynamically Teleswitched (DTS) electricity meter, it will soon need to be replaced.  

Due to the BBC radio frequency shutting down in the following 6 months, all businesses utilising RTS meters will need to switch to an alternative option before the 31st of March 2024.   

Here’s everything you need to know about the RTS shutdown and what comes next for those relying on this service. 

Are you using the Radio Teleswitch Service?  

Does your electricity meter alternate between peak and off-peak tariff rates (e.g. Economy 7 or 10 tariff), or is it programmed to automatically activate heating and hot water? If that’s the case, you may be using the RTS technology.  

The Radio Teleswitch Service is an industry-run service and, more specifically, a digital signalling system that gives energy suppliers the ability to remotely control certain appliances in domestic and non-domestic locations. This is applied during peak times to alleviate the demand on the overall electricity network. 

But how is this related to the BBC radio frequency? The RTS meter receives updates through longwave radio broadcast, the same frequency BBC uses to deliver radio programmes. For this reason, RTS electricity meters won’t be able to work from April 2024 and therefore will need replacing.  

What happens now?  

Due to the shutdown of the BBC frequency, all homes and businesses using an RTS electricity meter will need to have it substituted before March 31, 2024. Usually, these meters have been installed prior to 2014 and haven’t been updated since.  

You should not lose meter functionality before then, but it’s important to get your meter replaced to avoid any unexpected bills. 

Provided that you depend on RTS, your energy supplier or TPI (Third Party Intermediary) should contact you to discuss available options and arrange an exchange before the shutdown date.  

If you haven’t heard from your supplier or TPI, or if you are unsure whether you are using the RTS technology, reach out to them for verification. They should be able to confirm whether you are utilising an RTS meter or a different service.  

Switching to a smart meter 

The UK government’s programme requires all energy suppliers to replace older meters with smart ones in homes and businesses across England, Wales and Scotland.  

Installing a smart meter can benefit your business in numerous ways, especially when looking to cut costs and improve energy efficiency measures. In fact, switching to this newer model ensures your supplier receives correct and consistent readings, promoting more accurate bills and avoiding unpleasant surprises. Through smart meters, you can also monitor energy consumption more closely and keep track of how much energy you’re using. Gaining this deeper insight can allow you to adjust usage and save both money and energy in the process.  

Regardless of whether you use RTS, if you want to switch to a smart meter, make sure that your electricity supplier checks that you can connect to the Smart Metering Area Network (SM-WAN), which links these meters to suppliers (as opposed to the radio frequency).  

If you don’t wish to upgrade to a smart meter, your supplier will advise you on other available options.   

Reduce energy costs and consumption 

Installing a smart meter is the first step in reducing costs and improving energy efficiency for your organisation. However, that’s not the only option available. In fact, there are several products and services that can take you even further.  

We’re here to help

As a leading energy and sustainability advisor, we can support your business in achieving its energy costs and consumption goals. If would like to discover what options are available to you, please get in touch on 01772 689250 or email [email protected]