Jargon Busters


Like many large industries, the wonderful world of energy is flooded with jargonistic jiggery-pokery that can confuse even the most switched-on of energy aficionado’s. You can be forgiven for confusing your ‘calorific values’, with your ‘kWh’s’, your ‘MPAN’s’ with your ‘MPR’s’ or even your ‘volume correction factors’ with your ‘variable direct debits!’ It can be a minefield of alienating acronym’s, tricky terminology and general gobbledygook…!

As part of our commitment to keeping things simple for our customers, we have created a comprehensive list of terms and buzzwords that could appear on your bill-or you might hear when attempting to switch supplier. Browse our alphabetic all-inclusive inventory and you’ll soon know the difference between a ‘Line Loss Factor’ and a ‘Load Factor!’


Actual Reading (A) – Features on your bill, indicating that your meter has been read and recorded.

Biofuel – Fuel derived from living matter. A cleaner source of energy.

Calorific Value (CV) Appearing on your bill, this is the scientific term used to describe the amount of heat generated per volume of gas that is burned away.

Cancellation Fees You won’t experience these as a Fischer Energy customer but some suppliers will charge you if you want to leave a tariff before the specified date.

Consumption – The amount of energy you use. Displayed as a number of kilowatt hours (kWh).

Cooling-off period A 14-day period begins after you decide to switch supplier allowing you to change your mind without any repercussions.

Deregulation The removal of government control over the energy industry in 1989. Designed to promote competition and encourage fair pricing.

Dual Fuel – The supply of both gas and electricity.

Economy 7 – A type of meter that measures the amount of electricity used at night separately from the amount used in the daytime, with the night rate being cheaper.

Economy 10 – Similar to Economy 7 but with discounted prices for 10 set off-peak hours. Usually 3 hours in the afternoon, 2 in the evening and 5 hours overnight.

Estimated Reading (E) – When a supplier is unable to obtain a meter reading, they will estimate it to produce a bill. Get into the habit of reading your meters every month to avoid this.

Energy – Gas and Electricity

Energy Efficiency – Making the most of your energy – See our Home Checklist to make sure you’re not wasting needless energy.

Fixed Rate Tariff – The amount you pay for your energy in unit rates will stay the same for a fixed period of time.

Fuel Mix – What makes up the energy you receive – Can be coal, natural gas, nuclear, renewable and ‘other’.

Green Tariff Specific tariffs that allow you to contribute to environmental health. At Fischer Energy we do not charge extra for going green.

High User Defined as consumers of over 4,950 kWh of electricity and 28,000 kWh of gas per year.

IGT (Independent Gas Transfer) Network An independent company who supply gas not connected to the National Grid. If your MPR number is 10 digits long and starts with a 74 or 75, you’re supplied by an IGT.

kWh (kilowatt hour) – The unit of measurement for gas and electricity consumption. The amount you use will show on your bill and you will be charged for each unit. Find out the number of kWh you use annually and you can get an accurate quote if considering changing supplier.

MPAN (Meter Point Administration Number) – A unique identifying number for the electricity supply at your home. Found on your electricity bill, an MPAN is often referred to as a ‘Supply Number’.

MPRN (Meter Point Reference Number) A unique identifying number for the gas supply at your home. 10 digits and often referred to as an ‘M- Number’, you will find this on your gas bill.

National Grid The company responsible for our homes receiving energy. In charge of the network of transmitters and pipes.

OFGEM (Office of Gas & Electricity Markets) – The regulatory body for the energy industry. Promotes fair competition, ensures environmental targets are met and protects the interests of consumers.

One Fair Tariff Fischer Energy’s unique single tariff. Offering simplicity and fair pricing and excellent customer service.

Prepayment Meter – A ‘pay-as-you-go’ energy meter usually ‘topped-up’ with a card or key fob. This is usually the most expensive way to receive energy.

Single Rate Meter – The most common type of meter recording the amount of kWh used per day.

Standing Charge – A fixed daily charge for energy regardless of consumption.

Supply Number – See MPAN.

Transco – Became National Grid plc in 2005.

Transfer Process – The journey of switching energy supplier. (See our Blog for further details)

Unit Rate – The price you are charged for each unit of energy consumed.

Volume Correction Factor – A number used by the suppliers to take into account the changes in volume of gas based on temperature and pressure. Used to calculate the amount of kWh used.


So there you have it, you now have everything needed in your armoury to clear up any energy-related confusion.  Whether you’re looking to switch suppliers, have issues with your bill or just want to deepen your knowledge of the energy industry. It’s all here for you. Alternatively, feel free to pick up the phone and speak to one of our friendly customer service staff who will be able to answer any questions you may have.

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