The Meter Point Administration Number (MPAN) is a unique reference number that identifies the supply point of a property’s electrical system. Individual electricity meters occasionally require a replacement or an upgrade, especially with the roll out of smart meters. When this happens, the new meter will come with a new serial number. This is not the case with a properties MPAN. The MPAN essentially marks the point at which the network equipment connects to the customer. It is possible to have one MPAN number for various meters inside a single property. However, the MPAN will not change in the same way that a Meter Serial Number (MSN) will.
Although the full MPAN is a 21-digit number, it is the last 13-digits that the energy supplier is asking for. You may also see it referred to as an ‘electrical supply number’, ‘S-number’ or just ‘supply number’.
The purpose of these numbers is to simplify the identification of a customer’s meter. The intention here is to help increase competition throughout the electricity market and make switching between suppliers easier. They have been in place since 1998 and have been increasingly useful as internet usage has grown. Because of the systems in place today, and thanks in no small part to MPAN numbers and others like it, switching to a better electricity deal can be little more than a few clicks away. Administration on the customers side has been significantly cut down. It is now normal for the energy supplier to handle all aspects of the switch.
Where can I find my MPAN?
Your unique MPAN is available on your electricity bill that arrives through the post or any bill that you receive via the internet. It may not be as prominent as you would expect it to be, often it is in small print. It is identifiable by an ‘S’ followed by two lines of digits. The top line contains 8 digits, with more on the meaning of each of them below, but it is the second line you will most likely need. This is the 13 digits that you will need to provide when asked for your MPAN number.
If you do not have access to any previous bills for your address, you can contact your current supplier who will be able to help you. Citizens Advice are also able to provide your MPAN as long as you know your address and postcode.
Why might I need my MPAN?
Your MPAN number is unique to your address. In the case of switching suppliers, your new energy company will use this number to make sure they are switching the correct address.
If you believe that your billing may be incorrect or it seems as though your charges are drastically different to what you were expecting, check to make sure that your electricity account has been associated with the correct MPAN number. If this is incorrect, you could be paying somebody else’s bill.
What are the first 8 digits?
It is unlikely that you will ever need to worry about the first 8 digits, or the top line of your ‘S Number’. However, if interested or just curious, read on for a quick run through:
Profile Class – The first two digits identify the type of metering system in use. 00 indicates that electricity consumption is recorded at half hour intervals, every half hour of every day. 01 is for domestic unmetered supplies. 02 is for domestic economy meters utilising two or more rates. 03-08 are for non-domestic meters of various uses.
Meter Time Code – A 3-digit code that shows which register a meter has. This could be a seasonal time of day, day to night split or single rate.
Line Loss Factor – The final 3-digits on the top line are reserved for identifying the Distribution Use of System charges for the MPAN. This number reflects the amount of heat energy lost through cables and other electrical equipment, as well as how much distribution equipment has been used to supply this point.
Distributor ID – The first 2-digits on the bottom line show the area of the country the property is. The UK is split into 14 distribution areas, with each being licensed by a single network operator. For example, if the first 2-digits are 18, the indication would be that the MPAN is from the south of Scotland. This area is currently covered by Scottish Power.
Core – Including the 2-digit Distributor ID, the core refers to the 13-digits that make up the bottom line. After the Distributor ID, there is an 8-digit unique identification number, two digits, and then a single check digit.