Prepaid meters came into the Nigerian system when the Power Holding Company of Nigeria became privatized. This development has been a huge relief to many Nigerians when it comes to the power supply. Before this time, there used to be perpetual complaints about arbitrary meter billings by the Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NEPA). People were overcharged for electricity usage and many were not able to pay the bills accrued to them which would make the government officials disconnect their power source. With a prepaid meter, a consumer can determine the worth of electricity units he or she has used and the specific amount to be repurchased, so you do not have to wait for estimates or arbitrary billings. This explains why many Nigerians have rushed to get their PHCN prepaid meter since it was introduced. Even after acquiring their prepaid meters, many complain that they are not able to check their prepaid meter balances so as to be sure when their credits will run out. This article covers how to check for your prepaid meter balance and other processes you need to know when using a prepaid meter.
The process involved in acquiring a Prepaid Meter in Nigeria
According to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, customers are expected to pay for a prepaid meter. Each distribution company, such as Ikeja Electric Plc or Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company has online processes meant to guide the metering process. On their respective websites, you will be advised on the designated channels for payment.
The process involved in acquiring a prepaid meter in Nigeria is categorized into four basic stages:
Know Your Customer (KYC): Know Your Customer process is the stage where the customer settles any outstanding debt. There are dispute resolution options available through the Know Your Customer Process which customers can take advantage of as regards payment of outstanding bills. For example, outstanding balances can also be rolled over into the prepaid account and paid in installments.
Account/Field Surveying: An account survey is carried out before the customer is allowed to pay for the prepaid meter.
Payment for Prepaid meter
Installation: After payment, the prepaid meter is provided and installed within 10 working days.
How to Apply for Prepaid Meter in Nigeria
Start the KYC process by visiting the specific electricity distribution company website, for example, Ikeja Electric Company or Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company
As a new customer, you will have to put in your old meter number so that the officials can view your account profile.
Complete the Know Your Customer process where you need to fill in your personal details appropriately so as to start off the account survey process.
Debt Settlement: A new customer is required to clear all outstanding debts by taking advantage of repayment options made available
Meter Payment and Installation: After payment to the authorized bank, you will have your meter installed at your residence.
Note: No customer who wants to purchase a prepaid meter should make payments to company staff or any other individual.
How long it takes to get your Prepaid Meter
After paying for your prepaid meters, it will usually take about ten working days for your prepaid meter to be installed at your residence. The activation process usually takes place two working days after installation.
How to Check your Prepaid Meter Balance
To check the total credit unit you have used on your prepaid meter at a time, dial “07” on the keypad then press the blue button, and your available balance will be displayed on your screen.
How to Check for your Meter Number
The meter number is the unique ID assigned to your prepaid meter. The meter number contains a combination of numbers and letters and varies in length between seven to eleven digits. If you want to find your meter number, all you need to do is dial “65” then press the blue button on your meter. Your meter number will be displayed on the screen.
How to recharge your Prepaid Meter
There are several available options through which you can recharge your prepaid meter. The most popular ways are by the Prepaid Smart card or online recharge.
To make use of the prepaid smart card in recharging your meter, you need to configure your smart card at the Power Holding Company nearest to you. After configuring your smart card, you can now use the card to load, purchase, and check or retrieve power credits.
How to Recharge directly Using the Prepaid Smart Card
Firstly, ensure your control box is connected to a power source
Open the card door of your meter monitor
Carefully insert the smart card in the proper direction indicated on the card.
When you insert your card, you would notice a symbol on the monitor unit’s LCD screen. You must not remove your smart card during this process, or else your card might be damaged or you will end up with an incomplete recharge process.
You will receive a notification once loading is completed.
How to Recharge your Prepaid Meter Online
Open your browser and enter the website of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria
You will find a list of different electricity distribution companies in Nigeria such as Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKDC), Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company or Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC)
Upon selection, you will be taken to another page where you are required to type in your information, such as meter number, email, phone number, and worth of electric unit you want to buy (in naira).
Click on “submit”
Confirm your order summary, then select your preferred mode of payment. The payment options available include bank transfers or credit cards.
You will then be taken to the final page which would show if your order has been confirmed. Your token will be sent directly to your mobile number.
Enter this token correctly on your prepaid meter to recharge your meter.
Now you know how to check your prepaid meter balance and recharge without any difficulty.