Small energy companies
By Sarah Ingrams
Article 7 of 20
Flow Energy is a small energy supplier with a growing customer base. Find out if you should switch to Flow Energy by reading our review.
Flow Energy started trading in April 2013 and quickly attracted around 30,000 customers, as it then offered a very competitive energy deal. Flow now has more than 100,000 customers and this is the third year it's been included in our energy survey.
Flow Energy labels itself as an ‘energy technology company’ and is looking to attract customers who want to install its innovative micro-combined heat and power boiler in their homes. The boiler works on natural gas, and Flow Energy claims that it generates electricity while also heating your home.
Can you save money by switching to Flow Energy? See how Flow's prices compare with the rest of the market by using Which? Switch to find the cheapest gas and electricity.
Flow Energy customer satisfaction
Flow Energy came equal fourth out of 29 energy companies rated by 8,917 members of the public in the annual Which? customer survey – the biggest of its kind.
Flow Energy customer
"They were very helpful when we joined them"
The table below shows the breakdown of Flow Energy's score from our latest survey.
|Flow Energy survey results|
|Area of performance||Star rating|
|Customer service and complaints handling||-|
|Value for money|
|Bills (accuracy and clarity)|
|Helping you to save energy||-|
(Survey: October 2016, responses of 40 Flow Energy customers.)
We didn't have enough responses from Flow Energy customers to be able to provide a ratings on 'Customer service and complaints handling' and 'Helping you to save energy'.
Find out how Flow Energy compares with other energy companies – see the full results of the best and worst energy companies.
Which? verdict on Flow Energy
Our survey shows that Flow Energy is keeping its customers happy, with a respectable score of 73%. This is just five percentage points behind the top-scoring energy company Ovo Energy.
Flow manufactures its own energy-producing boiler and offers competitive energy tariffs.
Previously a Which? Recommended Provider, Flow narrowly missed out this year.
Previously a Which? Recommended Provider, Flow Energy narrowly missed out this year. It didn’t score better than average in our policy assessment – for example, its customer service policy didn’t include call back when we assessed it in September 2016.
This might explain why it resolves just 21% of complaints within two working days, despite getting among the fewest complaints per 1,000 customers.
You can read more about what an energy company has to do to become a Which? Recommended Provider – see best and worst energy companies.
In our recent investigation into call-waiting times, Flow Energy came fourth out of 23 small and large suppliers, taking an average of 65 seconds to answer its customer-service line.
Pros: Quick to pick up the phone; bills are very clear.
Cons: Struggles to resolve complaints on the same or next working day
Flow Energy fuel mix
Where Flow Energy gets its fuel from:
- 19% Coal
- 33% Natural gas
- 13% Nuclear
- 7% Other
- 28% Renewables
(Note: This information was correct in January 2017.)
Flow Energy in the news
Feb: Flow Energy is for sale. Its parent company, Flowgroup, said that although the business is growing, pressure from volatility in wholesale market prices and trying to compete with new energy firms offering cheap tariffs had prompted the decision. Flowgroup hopes that selling Flow Energy will help it to develop its smart microchip boilers.
On 9 November 2016, Flow Energy increased the price of its standard variable tariff by 9%. This means Flow customers will see bills rise by an average of £77 per year, bringing the average dual fuel bill to £949 per year.
Flow told us that this is the first time it has raised the price of its standard tariff and it has done so in response to a ‘huge rise in wholesale costs’.
At the end of 2015, Flow exceeded its target of 100,000 energy customers.
On 9 December 2015, Flow announced a contract with Shell for the provision of its wholesale energy.
Don't pay your energy company more than you need to. Use Which? Switch to find the cheapest gas and electricity deals.