Getting started with self-meter reads

Want more control of your energy bills? You don’t have to wait for a meter reader – do it yourself! Track your usage and costs whenever you like, in My Account or the Origin app.

You can do a self-meter read in 4 simple steps

Read your own meter, send your data straight to us to get a bill issued or see your current cost and usage. This video shows you just how easy it is.

Video transcript

How to do a self meter read

Want to read your own meter and send us the info?

Here’s how to do a self-meter read in 4 simple steps.

Step 1: Prepare

  • Open the app, or go to My Account
  • In the menu go to Usage, then to Read my own meter
  • Your eligible accounts are listed there
  • Select the one you want to do a reading

Here we’ll show you the serial number of the meter registered. Check it’s the same as the number on your bill.

If your account isn’t eligible, tap on Find out why and we’ll explain.

Step 2: Find

The most common place to find your electricity meter is

  • Front of house
  • Garage
  • Porch
  • External wall

Gas meters are usually found at ground level.

Please be careful – meters can be home to unfriendly guests.


Step 3:  Identify

Check the meter serial number matches the one in the app.

There are many different types of meters. Here are the most common ones

  • Clock display
  • Odometer display
  • Digital display


Step 4: Record

Making sense of the numbers is easy when you know what to look for.

On a Clock display meter, you’ll see a number of clocks on the screen.

  • Read the clocks from left to right
  • For some meters the clocks turn in  opposite directions
  • If the clock hand is between 2 numbers record the lower number, unless it is between 9 and 0 then it’s a 9

In this example the number would be 27289.

  • Odometer display meters often have a lot of zeroes
  • Make sure you include all the leading zeroes
  • If a dial is between numbers, record the lower number
  • A digital display meter is the easy one, just note down all the numbers

When there are lots of clocks or zeroes on the screen, it’s helpful to check your last meter read and make sure the number is in a similar range.

Once you know your number, simply enter it in and click Save reading.

Job done. We’ll process your self meter read with your distributor and update your account in the next 24 hours.

1. Prepare

Digital display

How to read a digital display meter

Elec display meter

This is a smart meter, NOT a basic meter

Gas digital display

Gas meter with digital display

Do you get estimated readings even though you have a smart meter? Your distributor will have set your meter up for manual readings (so you can do your own reading).

Heads up – although it looks digital and smart, the sort of gas meter pictured above cannot be read remotely. This is a digital display meter.

For your digital display gas meter, record all the numbers you see (from left to right). You don’t need to add any numbers after a decimal point – we only count whole numbers.

Odometer display

How to read an odometer display meter

Elec odometer display

Electricity meter with odometer display

Gas odometer display

Gas meter with odometer display

Odometers can have up to three rows of numbers. 

Make sure you include all the leading 000s. If a dial is between numbers, record the lower number.

Seeing more than one set of numbers? Read each one and record them separately – these are for peak, off-peak or shoulder readings.

Clock display

How to read a clock display meter

Electricity clock meter

Electricity meter with clock display

Gas clock meter

Gas meter with clock display

Before you get started

You will see four “clocks”. The clocks are read from left to right.

The clocks turn in opposite directions. If one clock turns clockwise, the next will turn anti-clockwise.

Look out for these

A clock hand between two numbers

Is the clock hand between 9 and 0?

  • Yes – record 9.
  • No – record the lower number. (So 2 not 3, or 5 not 6.)

A clock hand that’s close or on a number

Before you add that number, you’ll need to look at the next clock first.

If the next clock hand is between 0 and 1, go ahead and add the number the clock hand was on from the previous clock.

If the next clock hand is between 9 and 0, then you’ll add the number before the number the clock hand was directly on.

2. Find your meter

Check the meter serial number matches the one in the app.

There are many different types of meters. Here are the most common ones

3. Identify
  • Open the app, or go to My Account
  • In My Account, look for Submit a meter read in the Billing & payments menu
  • If you’ve got the app open, go to Account, then Read my own meter
  • Your eligible accounts are listed there
  • Select the one you want to do a reading
  • Here we’ll show you the serial number of the meter registered. Check it’s the same as the number on your bill.
  • If your account isn’t eligible, tap on Find out why and we’ll explain.
4. Record

Unit, townhouse or warehouse – you’ll most likely find your electricity, gas or hot water meter outside. Please be careful! We trust you’ll be fine, but sometimes meters can be in awkward places or home to unfriendly guests.

Not outside? You could try: 

Electricity meter

  • Your hallway or laundry
  • The garage, porch or on an external wall

Gas meter

  • Most likely, out the front of your place, close to the street
  • NSW-ers, try under your kitchen sink

Apartment life?

All the meters for your building are probably stored together in a room or cupboard. It’s worth chatting with your body corporate, building manager or real estate agent to get access.

Alright, you’re ready to read your meter! Don’t feel like you need to remember everything – we’ll give you steps along the way. 

Do a self-meter read now

Need more help?

Basic or smart – which meter do I have?

Ever looked at your energy bill and noticed that it’s Estimated rather than Actual? 

This sometimes happens when you’ve got a basic meter. An Actual meter read typically comes from an authorised meter reader who goes to your property and notes down where your usage is at. Every now and then we may have to estimate your read because we weren’t able to read your meter. Maybe your pet won’t let us near the meter, or perhaps you can’t leave your gate unlocked.

If safe, clear access to your meter is an issue – simply get in touch to organise a special read time OR you can do a self-meter read.


Estimated bills – why am I getting them?

Have you received an estimated bill or seen the option to submit a self-meter read in your account? This means you have a basic meter and may be eligible to submit your own meter reads.

It’s important to note:

  • All natural gas meters are basic meters
  • Some electricity meters are basic, and some are smart, or digital
  • There are some basic electricity meters with a digital display – this does not make them a smart meter
What happens after I submit a self-meter read?

Depending on what you’re using our self-meter read feature for, a few different things will happen. 


Cost to date and predicted bill

Submit your read to view your cost to date and see your predicted bill. We’ll keep a track of it to help predict your bill again at the next read.  

At the moment, we’re not able to reflect your self-meter read on your usage screen or dashboard, but we’re working on it. For now, you can see your most recent bill prediction and check your cost so far by going to the self-meter read screen.


Estimated bill reissued

Submit your read and indicate you’d like your bill reissued. We’ll check it out and send a new bill through within 24 hours in My Account or via email. Paper bills can take up to 5 business days. 

Should you miss the window of opportunity to submit an actual read for your estimated bill – don’t worry. We’ll automatically adjust your account when we get your next actual read. 


Next bill issued early

Submit your read and indicate you’d like your bill issued early. We’ll run some quick checks before sending out your bill. You’ll see it in My Account or your email within 24 hours. Paper bills can take around 5 business days. Any issues with your reading, we’ll let you know as soon as possible.


These may also be helpful:

• Which meter read will you use to issue my bill?

• Where can I find my next meter read date?

• When can I submit a self-meter read?

I’ve been asked to submit a photo of my meter, what do I do?

Some accounts are not eligible for self-meter reads, and we’ll need a photo of your meter instead. We’ll let you know if this is the case. If you’re asked to send us a photo of your meter, here are a few tips.

Make sure the photo is:

  • clear, not blurry
  • taken from directly in front, not from above or below
  • showing the entire face of the meter
  • free from dust or dirt
  • easily visible, not obscured by writing or glare
  • showing two sets of numbers – the meter reading and the serial number.

Basic meter? Get more control over your bill


Check your bill’s predicted total 

The more readings you send us, the more accurately we can predict your bill. We take an average of your reads-to-date for each bill period and project this for the remainder of your billing cycle.


Want your next bill issued early? No problems

Within 10 working days of your next scheduled meter read date? You can choose to have your bill issued early. If the time is right, you’ll see this option on screen once you’ve entered your read.


Get your estimated bill reissued

Received a bill that’s Estimated rather than Actual? Submit a read to share your actual usage with us, so you’re only billed for what you use. Do this up to 14 working days after you’ve been issued an Estimated bill – we can reissue your bill within a day, online.


Estimated bills can be pretty close – but they’re not 100% accurate

Estimated bills usually come about if we’ve had trouble accessing your meter. So, they’re usually based off your previous reads, not your most recent data. Let us know your actual usage – we’ll reissue your bill.


Smart meters send data remotely, basic meters need a human

Smart meters send data to us automatically. Basic meters are read by a meter reader every 2–3 months. To stay up-to-date with your cost and usage between reads, submit your own! 


You’re in control. Submit a self-meter read, anytime

Save yourself from any surprises when your bill comes. Check your usage, cost-to-date and see your bill’s predicted total whenever you like with our self-meter read feature. 

Get it done in the app

You can send your own meter reading straight to us using our Origin app. If you’re eligible, you can check your cost, usage or get your bill issued – straight from your phone.

Download on the App StoreGet it on Google Play