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Smart plugs and a bit of programming should be able to take care of that without waiting for the Smart appliances to appear.
It could, up to a point (if the appliances would come on at 'power up', which most won't these days) - but only if that 'bit of programming' included the ability to have real-time access to data relating to the day's cheap/expensive periods (from meter, websites or wherever).

However, a really 'smart' system would probably not work independently for each appliance (using 'smart' plugs/sockets for each) but, rather, would have a centralised processing system that took into account all of the appliances and all of the TOU periods - which would require "a bit more" programming!

It wouldn't surprise me if such 'smart systems' are already used in, say, France, where, as I understand it, there are quite restrictive limits on total instantaneous demand.

Another point, in passing. If we get to the stage at which many suppliers are offering dynamic TOU tariffs (and many consumers are using them), then I imagine that there will have to be collaboration between the suppliers, to avoid a situation in which the cheap TOU periods for many/most of them were the same - if, because if an attractively-cheap rate for exactly the same TOU (at a currently very low demand time of day) was offered by all suppliers, then if vast numbers of people switched on their EV chargers at that time, it could turn a 'very-low-demand' time of day into a "very-high-demand" one. That could result (unless the chargers were 'smart'/automated') in very annoying frequent yo-yoing of the cheap times of day!

Kind Regards, John
 
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As most people's reason for wanting a smart meter is frequently said to be because they can't be bothered to read the meter once a quarter, this all seems to be an awful lot of work.
 
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Another point, in passing. If we get to the stage at which many suppliers are offering dynamic TOU tariffs (and many consumers are using them), then I imagine that there will have to be collaboration between the suppliers, to avoid a situation in which the cheap TOU periods for many/most of them were the same - if, because if an attractively-cheap rate for exactly the same TOU (at a currently very low demand time of day) was offered by all suppliers, then if vast numbers of people switched on their EV chargers at that time, it could turn a 'very-low-demand' time of day into a "very-high-demand" one. That could result (unless the chargers were 'smart'/automated') in very annoying frequent yo-yoing of the cheap times of day!

I would imagine they would take that into consideration, probably they would offer the cheaper supply to a limited number of consumers and offer it at staggered timings rather than all on at one.
 
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As most people's reason for wanting a smart meter is frequently said to be because they can't be bothered to read the meter once a quarter, this all seems to be an awful lot of work.
Totally agreed - but, as you know, at least in the eyes of the government, that is not the main reason (or even a particularly important reason) for having smart meters.

The underlying concept of (eventually) being able to better manage the electricity supply/demand situation is probably fairly sound (for multiple reasons) but, as you imply, the cost (ultimately to consumers) appears to be very high. However, as I've said, I'm a little surprised that people seem to be making a lot of fuss about that particular 'cost', but seemingly no fuss at all about the cost (to householders) of our being pushed in the direction of requiring SPDs and AFDDs in all domestic installations (the potential 'benefits' of which seem to me to be even less than those of 'smart' meters!)!

Kind Regards, John
 
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I would imagine they would take that into consideration, probably they would offer the cheaper supply to a limited number of consumers and offer it at staggered timings rather than all on at one.
Yes, one hopes so - but, as I said, if/when multiple companies are offering such tariffs, that will presumably have to be done by collaboration across all suppliers.

As always, I may be wrong, but my understanding of the present situation with Octopus is that they offer the same cheap TOU timings to all of their customers on any particular day.

Kind Regards, John
 
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Hello everyone. It's me, the OP. I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who has contributed to this topic. I am reading every posting and am finding it very informative. Slightly off topic in some cases but I am still very appreciative of each and every one of you. Thank you and kind regards.
 
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I do like the idea of the household appliances being able to decide when the best time of the day to operate for cheapest electrical usage.
Although I think it's a long time away as it would take multiple big firms to cooperate and that's not likely to happen anytime soon.
Smart appliances talking to the smart meter and operating at cheaper rates, now that's something to behold and certainly the future.
 
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I do like the idea of the household appliances being able to decide when the best time of the day to operate for cheapest electrical usage.
Although I think it's a long time away as it would take multiple big firms to cooperate and that's not likely to happen anytime soon.
Smart appliances talking to the smart meter and operating at cheaper rates, now that's something to behold and certainly the future.
As I've said, that is the ultimate hope/aim, and if/when that happens, the 'smart' meters will certainly be serving a very useful purpose. However, as I have said (and you seem to agree), it may well be only the youngest of people reading this (almost certainly not me!) who may still be around to see that day!

Kind Regards, John
 
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Both my dish washer and washing machine have a “delay start” facility. Simply by delaying the start time you can take advantage of cheaper rates.
Now if I can just get them to fix my smart meter we should be laughing ;)
 
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So, I use OctopusWatch, which is a smartphone app - it tells me the tariffs for each half hour for upcoming incoming and outgoing electricity. It also tells me the best time to put on the dishwasher. I could in theory set up a smart plug to do it for me, but it's simple enough not to.

The car charger has its own software to (amongst other things) automatically import at low rate times, and export at higher rate times.

The eddi will turn on the immersion heater if the electricity rates drop below a rate I set (for example when the cost/kWh for electricity drops below the cost/kWh for gas), or I can just set it to heat the water for a certain time and it'll find the lowest rate periods to switch on.

In terms of smart appliances, I think we're going to see the rapid spread of integration between appliances and tariffs, using platforms such as IFTTT,

Staggered TOU tariffs are already here - I think intelligent octopus is one example.

So people still use tumble driers? I don't think I'd want one of those without a TOU tariff!
 
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Both my dish washer and washing machine have a “delay start” facility.
So do mine (and my tumble dryer), but ....
Simply by delaying the start time you can take advantage of cheaper rates.
... at least with mine, it's not necessarily that 'simple'. Mine offer the choice of delays of 3, 6 and 9 hours, which may or may not work out conveniently for the cheap electricity periods. However, in addition to the general hassle of having to ascertain the timing of the cheap periods and set up one's appliances every day, one would have top be quite disciplined every day to remember to to set the machine(s) roughly 3, 6 or 9 hours before one wanted them to come on!

Kind Regards, John
 
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I could put my dishwasher/washing machine etc. on a smart plug however they require the pushing of a "start" button to actually start, just the supply of power will not start them.
 
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If and when they want everyone to use smart meters to control general gas and electricity use, I suspect that those non-adaptors of smart meters will find they will be paying a premium for refusing to adapt in the same way as those that are penalised for having a PAYG meter or those that pay quarterly apon receipt of a paper bill.
 
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Staggered TOU tariffs are already here - I think intelligent octopus is one example.

So people still use tumble driers? I don't think I'd want one of those without a TOU tariff!

Mine is a combined washer dryer, so it can do the wash and just carry on to do the dry, other than testing it, it has never really been used to dry. Instead I have a fancy self designed very long line outside in the garden and an equally clever setup in the utility for line drying - multiple lines, a fan and a dehumidifier, to suck the moisture out of the air and the washing. I just hang maybe two washer loads up on an evening, switch it on and it is all dry by the time I get up next day. The cost is negligible, despite not being on an off-peak tariff - just done over-night for convenience, as the hung up washing makes using the utility for anything else quite difficult.

I don't think I personally would be able to make much use of the TOU - I could only use it for the rarely used dishwasher, or the clothes washer at the moment. If it came to it, I would look to add a Smart relay across the start button contacts, using Alexa to start things off at the appropriate timings. My utility drying set up would be even easier, just power it via a Smart Plug adaptor. I could do something similar with the immersion heater, which is only there to cover for the rare boiler failures - if electric heating ever cost less than gas water heating.
 
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