Gas meter fraud – the facts

Gas meter fraud is a common crime, taking place on high streets, in homes and businesses all around the country – and you may be an unwitting victim of gas theft. There are many stories on this website and in the media of landlords, former partners, or relatives “fixing” gas meters in order to save money on gas bills.

Gas meter fraud - gas hob

Whilst most people know that meddling with gas meters is illegal, many are unaware of the potential problems that this can cause. At best, you may be cut off, with no heating or hot water, and forced to pay back what you owe.

But tampering with gas meters is also highly dangerous.

If you have an illegal meter in your home, and there has not been a gas leak or accident, then you are one of the lucky ones.

What is gas meter fraud?

The energy industry has estimated that a whopping £400 million worth of gas and electricity is stolen every year in the UK, a loss that adds around £20 to every honest customer’s bill. It’s an industry-wide issue and more than 15,000 cases are investigated every year.

Gas meter fraud - gas meter

Gas meter fraud involves bypassing or rigging the gas meter in some way so that it does not accurately record the amount of gas that is being used. It’s easy to search for “how to bypass my gas meter” on any search engine, and receive “expert tips”. But who are these so-called experts, and is what they are recommending even safe?

There’s a simple answer to this question. People that tamper with gas meters are criminals, and what they are showing you is not safe. Using hosepipes and bicycle inner tubes to “fix” gas meters, for example, is almost certain to result in leaks. If you have electricity or fire in your home, or if you smoke, then there is a risk of fire or explosions.

Potential dangers of gas fraud

There have been a number of fires and gas explosions caused by people having put in illegal meters to bypass their gas bills, sometimes causing massive injuries, damage to homes and property, and in some cases, loss of life.

The real-life stories section of this website shows many cases where people have been injured, lost their homes or in some cases, even their lives, due to energy theft.

When gas leaks because of a tampered gas meter, all it takes is one spark – perhaps from a light switch, a cigarette, or an electrical charger – to cause a fire or explosion.

Report anonymously

If you spot energy theft anywhere, speak up anonymously now.