Octopus Power-ups - Scotland

During Power-ups, any energy you use above your norm is totally free.

With renewable energy, we need to make hay while the sun shines.

We’re calling on homes in specific areas with lots of green generation to use up that spare solar and wind when it's most plentiful...

It's a trial with the National Grid ESO that's only open to customers with connected smart meters in very specific areas before hopefully rolling it out wider.

Want Power-ups in your area? Let us know. We'd love to bring this across the UK, and are talking to others now to make it happen – add your name to our petition to show them how much demand there is for Power-ups.

Power-ups banner 2

How do Power-ups work?

  • Power-ups will vary in length, but are usually an hour or two long, at times when wind makes up a high percentage of the electricity mix or when it's extra sunny and demand is low.
  • We’ll email you with as much notice as possible to let you know about the next Power-up (usually the morning that day) but you’ll now not need to opt in to every session!
  • When it’s time to Power up, all electricity that you use above your normal use will be free – it's a perfect time to run the dishwasher or washing machine or charge your battery or vehicle.
  • Power-ups won’t always be at the same time for everyone. The times will be different in each area to help use up extra renewables on a very local level.
  • We'll work out your ‘normal energy use’ at the time of each Power-up, measure how much energy you use in the Power-up and pay you for the energy you use over and above your norm.
  • We'll work out your earnings and add credit to your online account every few weeks.
  • Power-ups started on the 6th of December. We’ll be testing it in Scotland for a few months, with the hope of extending it for longer - and opening it up to other areas.
  • The time and number of Power-ups totally depends on your location and the amount of spare power in your local network. The National Grid ESO will tell us when there's this surplus and as soon as we know, we'll tell you too. This does mean that some customers may receive fewer Power-ups than others, purely based on location.

To join Power-ups Scotland, you need to:

  1. Be an Octopus Energy customer. Get a quote today.
  2. Live in specific areas in Scotland. Check your postcode now
  3. Have a connected smart electricity meter – to be eligible, we need to have received 80% of your half-hourly readings in the last 20 days.

If you fit with the details above, feel free to add yourself to the list below. We'll add new eligible customers to the project every so often, so if you're eligible, we'll let you know and you'll start getting Power-up email invites within a few weeks.

Want Power-ups in your area? Let us know. We'd love to bring this all over the UK, and are talking to other operators now to make it happen – add your name to our petition to show them how much demand there is for Power-ups.


Don’t have a smart meter yet?

Sign up to get one now so you can get free electricity in Power-ups.


Power up in your postcode

Power-ups won’t always be at the same time for everyone. We’re working to help balance supply and demand on a hyper-local level – so your friend a few streets away might be powering up an hour later than you, or on a different day altogether.

How Power-ups help make energy cheaper and greener for all

The power grid has to constantly work to balance supply and demand.

When demand is high, the grid has to generate more energy, often paying through the nose to burn extra dirty fossil fuels.

An illustration of 8-bit Constantine

On the flip side, if it's super sunny and windy when demand is low, green generators can be forced to switch off. It's a real shame to let those clean electrons go to waste: so any electricity you use over and above your normal usage is completely free!

This is just one more way people can benefit from using green energy flexibly, in tune with nature: using more when there’s wind and sun aplenty, and less when it’s scarce to avoid the need for extra fossil fuels.

Frequently asked questions

What is Power-ups?


Power-ups a brand new offering to Octopus customers in particular areas who get paid to use extra electricity at certain periods of time. Certain parts of the Grid network have a surplus of green energy but it often goes to waste, as there’s nowhere for it to go and noone is being told to use it. Power-ups Scotland will encourage you to use any this extra electricity, and any power you use above your norm will be completely free.

Why isn't Power-ups open to everyone?


We'd love it to be. There are a few reasons it's not. First of all, we're running Power-ups Scotland with network operator National Grid ESO, who're managing very specific parts of the network. This is why session times and rewards vary based on where you live. We'd love to work with more operators to bring it to more homes. If you want Power-ups in your neck of the woods, let us know.

The other major reason (and it's a big one) is that
Power-ups is designed to balance the network on a hyper-local level by targeting specific areas where there's regularly more renewable supply than demand. In some places, this just doesn't happen, so Power-ups may never be a perfect fit for your area.

There will always be other ways you can get benefits for using energy in the greenest way – like Saving Sessions, where you can be paid for cutting power when it's dirtiest. We also have super smart tariffs like Agile, where, when there's plenty of renewables powering the whole system, customers can be paid to use energy.

How do I know if I'm eligible to join in?


Eligibility is highly locationally dependent. There are certain parts of the network which regularly experience periods of surplus renewable generation, only customers in these zones will receive Power-ups. Some areas may receive more Power-ups than others.

If you are in the
right location and have a working smart meter, we'll email you.

Is this for gas or electricity or both?


Power-ups is for electricity only.

How do Power-ups work?

  • After you’ve signed up, you’ll receive an email letting you know if there is a Power-up in your area and what times this will be active for. We’ll always try and notify as far in advance as possible, but this depends on when we receive information from the network operator.
  • During the time period in the email you can use as much electricity as you like, and any energy above your norm will be free! Remember to only look at the email you receive (eg not social media) as Power-ups are dependent on location not everyone will receive a Power-up at the same time.
  • After the event, we'll add a credit to your account to cover the cost of any electricity you use during the Power-up above your normal usage. There’s no need for you to send us meter data, we will get it directly from your smart meter.

How do you work out my 'normal energy use'?

  • We'll look at your historical smart meter data to work out your typical energy use at that time of day.
  • If the Power-up is on a weekday, we'll look at your half-hourly usage over the last 10 weekdays. If the Power-up is at the weekend, we'll look at your half-hourly usage over the last 4 weekend days. We'll not include days where a Power-up took place in these calcs.
  • You'll then earn money for every kilowatt hour you 'turn up' during a Power-up above your normal use.

Can I join Octoplus and Power-ups Scotland?


You'll be able to sign up to Octoplus and we will let you know soon if you can take part in both Power-ups Scotland and Saving Sessions (or any other similar services at the same household). As this is a hyper-localised campaign, there are different rules, requirements and rewards depending on your local area.

Why do I need a smart meter?


You’ll need a working electric smart meter so we can credit your bill for your electricity usage during the Power-up. We need to receive half-hourly readings from your meter and have 80% of your smart meter readings in the last 20 days for you to be eligible to sign up.

If you don’t have a smart meter yet, join the list here.

We can generally install a smart meter in a few weeks (depending on engineer availability) but we can't absolutely guarantee it. Smart meters work great in most homes, but there are some areas where signal doesn't reach, and some types of homes where they'll have trouble connecting.

How will I be notified of a Power-up?


All notifications will happen via email.

They'll be sent with as much notice as possible – probably on the same morning.

You'll not receive notifications via the app (if we get lots of participation for Power -ups, we’ll look to introduce an app feature as well).

When will the Power-ups be?


Power-ups could happen any time there's a surplus of renewable electricity in your area. This could be in the middle of the day, when solar is high, or could be in the middle of the night when it's super windy.

Areas with lots of solar power are likely to get more Power-ups in Summer months.

Is there a limit on how much electricity I can use?


There’s no limit to how much electricity you can use during the Power-up. However, please don’t go overboard and follow safe practices (for example don’t overwhelm extension cables). And don’t overload your circuit breaker. Octopus is not responsible if your circuit breaker trips.

What happens if my circuit breaker trips during a Power-up?


It's your responsibility to ensure you don't overload your home circuit breaker. Octopus accepts no responsibility if it trips during a Power-up.

Can I tell my neighbour about Power-ups?


You need to be an Octopus customer to be eligible for Power-ups. If they aren’t, they won’t benefit from the reduced price of electricity. If your neighbour is an Octopus customer, feel free to suggest they check their emails for the invite.

But! Given the nature of the local network, it's also possible your neighbour isn’t eligible - sometimes one side of the street experiences different conditions to the other.

I’ve just joined Octopus Energy, when will you ask for more sign ups to Power-ups?


We'll look to increase participation on a rolling basis. If you've just joined us and meet the eligibility criteria we expect to send out requests for new sign ups every few months, so please just wait for the email or follow the steps above.

Do I need a smart meter screen (or in-home display) to join in?


Nope! As long as your smart meter itself is working, you can join. Your smart meter is the unit attached to the wall, usually in a cupboard under the stairs.

The in-home display is different to your smart meter – it's the little screen that's usually plugged in and sits on a bench somewhere in the house showing your energy usage info.

You can join Power-ups even if your screen doesn't work, or you don't have one.

What happens if my smart meter doesn’t send readings during a Power-up?


Very rarely, external issues like data outages or connection interruptions mean we might not be able to retrieve readings from your smart meter during a Power-up you opted into.

If that happens, we won’t know how much you used. Instead, we'll credit you based on the average electricity used by other customers during that Power-up.

What if my meter stops connecting altogether?


We’ll do all we can to get your meter working again. Though rare, some problems can be very tricky to fix – we're dependent on a whole host of third-party govt-mandated systems to make smart meters work, so sometimes it's outside of our control. We'll do our best to keep your meter connected but we can't guarantee it.

If we're no longer getting regular meter readings (meaning half-hourly readings every day for the last twenty days) we may contact you to let you know you're not eligible to take part anymore, and you won't be able to get half price electricity in Power-ups.

Why do meter readings occasionally go missing?


We generally get 48 readings from a smart meter into our systems every day, one for every half hour of the day.

Occasionally, we won’t be able to retrieve a meter reading for the specific time of the Power-up. This doesn't mean we're not connected to your meter. It could be either your actual meter unit losing power for a second, or a brief drop in something called WAN signal, which is the network your meter uses to connect. (Think about when the wifi drops out for a second, then you refresh and it’s totally fine.)

Can I join Power-ups with smart tariffs like Intelligent Octopus?


Yes, customers on Intelligent Octopus are eligible to take part and use the reduced-priced electricity during a Power-up.

Your charging schedule will *not* be updated to charge during the Power-up (we're working on this feature so in future it'll be automatically adjusted for you). You can use the Boost charge feature to schedule your EV to charge during the Power-up if you like, but it’s your responsibility to ensure this stops when the Power-ups ends.

Can I get Power-ups if I have an export tariff?


Yes, customers who generate and export electricity (via solar panels, for example) can take part in Power-ups.

Will I be able to track my progress through the app and dashboard?


Power-ups is brand new and hyper-localised, so we’re starting small. There’ll be no specific progress page or app but we'll process the credit every other week so you'll see it in next month's bill.

We’ll email you to let you know how you’re doing every few weeks. As Power-ups grows, this might change!

How long will Power-ups run for?


We’ll be trialling Power-ups Scotland for a few months, with the hope of extending it for longer.

We're planning to work with other network operators too. Agreements we have with each operator will be a bit different, with different processes and rewards. Power-ups in your area might stop in a year, just as they start up in another area. We’ll give you plenty of notice if Power-ups are ending.

When will I see the credit appear on my bill?


We will process the credit monthly so you will be able to see it in your next month's bill.

Terms & Conditions for Octopus Power-ups Scotland

These Terms and Conditions apply to the Octopus Energy Power-ups service (the “Service”). By entering the Service, you agree to be bound by the following Terms and Conditions:

  1. The Service will be run by Octopus Energy Limited, a company registered in England and Wales with registered number 09263424 and registered office UK House, 5th Floor, 164-182 Oxford St, London W1D 1NN (“Octopus Energy”, “we”, “us”).
  2. These terms and conditions, together with any specific rules set out in any communications relating to the Service, are the Service rules (“Rules”) and apply to this Service. By entering this Service, you are agreeing to be bound by these Rules and any other applicable instructions provided to you by us.
  3. Octopus Energy reserves the right to cancel or amend the Service and/or the Rules without prior notice. Any changes will be posted on our website.
  4. In the event of any dispute regarding any aspect of the Service, the decision of Octopus Energy shall be final and no correspondence will be entered into.
  5. These Service terms and conditions are separate and in addition to the terms and conditions for the supply of gas and electricity that you will have with Octopus Energy and will not affect your rights and obligations under those terms.

Service Participation

  1. There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this Service. Entrants must be 18 or over. Only residents of Great Britain are eligible to sign up to Octopus Energy and take part in the Service.
  2. To be eligible for the Service, you must:
    1. At all times comply with these Terms & Conditions;
    2. be a current electricity customer of Octopus Energy
    3. have a working electricity smart meter which has been sending us meter readings on a half hourly basis at least 80% of the time for the last consecutive 20 days at the date we assess your application
    4. Register into the Service by completing the form on the Service landing page at octopus.energy/power-ups-scotland
    5. Consent to Octopus Energy committing you to participate in the ESO Local Constraint Market on your behalf subject to the ESO’s standard terms and conditions at https://www.nationalgrideso.com/industry-information/balancing-services/local-constraint-market#Document-library
    6. Not be registered to provide a mutually exclusive service at the same household (either with Octopus Energy or another provider). Mutually exclusive services are:
      1. Balancing Mechanism
      2. Demand Flexibility Service (such as Saving Sessions)
      3. Distribution network constraint management services
    7. have consented to, and not remove your consent to, giving us half-hourly meter reads
  3. For the purpose of these terms, references to a ‘network operator’ is the organisation licensed by Ofgem with a distribution licence for the purpose of distributing electricity or the electricity system operator for Great Britain (currently National Grid ESO).
  4. The number of Power-ups received will vary by location, there is no guarantee as to number of Power-ups and no upper or lower limit. Customers will be able to decide which events they participate in. Prior to each Power-up, we will send you a notification of the Power-up window. For any increase in consumption compared to your ‘Baseline’ consumption (as calculated by us in line with paragraph 8 below), you will receive a credit on your bill (the “Incentive”), equal to your current unit rate per kWh for your energy tariff multiplied by the increase in kWh consumed during the power up (measured as the difference between your meter reading and your Baseline consumption for the same period).
  5. To be eligible for Incentive payments, you must increase electricity import as measured by your smart meter compared to your “Baseline” consumption during the equivalent half-hours of the Power-up window.
  6. You will be paid the Incentive for each half-hour of the Power-up that you turn up. We will use our reasonable endeavours to credit your account within 14 business days of each Power-up.
  7. We will calculate your baseline consumption (the ‘Baseline’) by taking your average usage in the same half hour period from the last 10 days for power up periods arising on a weekday, and 4 days for power up periods arising on a weekend. The calculation shall disregard any consumption during a period where a power up event was taking place. Our view of your baseline consumption calculation is final and determined at our discretion.
  8. In the event that we’re unable to pull your meter readings to calculate your usage from any of the Power-ups, we’ll work it out using our reasonable estimate based on an average across all Service participants. If at any point throughout the Service you are no longer eligible under Clause 2. (c), we reserve the right to remove you from the Service.
  9. If your smart meter becomes disconnected or you move house, we reserve the right to remove you from the Service.
  10. If you sign up to Octoplus, we reserve the right to disqualify you from participating in Saving Sessions.
  11. If you are one of our Smart Tariff customers or are part of any of our Smart Meter trials, we reserve the right to remove you from the Service at any point.
  12. By entering the Service, you warrant that all information submitted by you is true, current and complete. If any information you submit is found to be fraudulent or incorrectly completed or if Octopus Energy has reasonable grounds to believe that you have breached any of the Rules, Octopus Energy reserves the right to disqualify you from the Service. We may also disqualify you from participating in this Service if you have not paid your energy supply charges when due.
  13. Octopus Energy will not be liable to reimburse any expenses incurred with entering the Service.
  14. If at any point you wish to opt-out of the Service, please email hello@octopusenergy.com and we will remove you, please allow a minimum of 14 business days from sending your opt-out email for our records to be updated.

Data Protection and Publicity

  1. Octopus Energy’s privacy policy shall apply to any data collected in connection with this Service and can be found on our website at http://octopus.energy/privacy.
  2. Octopus Energy will share customers’ Meter Point Administration Numbers with network operators to register customers in the service and allocate payment to individual customers. Octopus Energy will provide the network operator with half hourly electricity consumption and baseline data. In rare cases, the network operator may request detailed half hourly data around the events to audit performance and payment, which may include consumption data on an individual customer basis. By entering the Service you agree to your information being shared with the network operator for this purpose.

Octopus Energy in its sole discretion reserves the right to withdraw or vary the Rules and/or any offer made in connection with them in order to comply with the decision of any relevant judicial or regulatory body and shall not be held liable to any entrant for doing so. Such changes shall be published on our website at octopus.energy/power-ups-scotland

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