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16 July 2021

Npower

Npower was one of the original energy companies in Great Britain. Now it's owned by Eon, and customers are moving to Eon Next, how will it change? Does it offer good customer service and low prices?
SI
Sarah Ingrams
Npower big six 480405

Npower is closing down. It is part of the Eon Group and its 3.6 million customers have been moved to Eon Next – a subsidiary of the company.

Previously Npower was part of the Innogy group, a Europe-wide energy company based in Germany. It operated coal, oil, biomass and gas-fired power stations.

Eon Next says that your payments will stay the same and your direct debit will transfer across from Npower. 

You'll need to set up your online Eon Next account, where you can see bills dating back two years.

Eon Next says that its 'energy specialists' are on hand to look after new customers.

Below we reveal what Npower’s customers thought of it and whether Npower offers value for money.

See whether you could save money by switching – compare energy prices with Which? Switch.

Npower customers moving to Eon Next

Npower customers started moving to Eon Next in summer 2020. All customers have now moved over to Eon Next, Npower says.

You should have received letters and emails telling you about the change plus a welcome pack from Eon Next when your account was moved across.

Your Npower tariff shouldn't have changed when you moved to Eon Next. Your payments should be the same and your direct debit transferred to Eon Next. 

If you have a fixed-term tariff you'll need to choose a new one from Eon Next (or another supplier) when it ends.

Npower customer score

Npower came 25th out of 25 firms in our energy companies satisfaction survey this year to occupy the very bottom spot below all its big rivals – British Gas, EDF Energy, Eon, SSE and Scottish Power.

We asked 7,460 members of the general public to rate their energy supplier to reveal the best and worst firms according to their customers.

The left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing. Conflicting answers given.

Npower customer

I think it could lower the price it charges.

Npower customer

Npower score breakdown

See below for the breakdown of Npower’s score from our latest survey.

Then scroll down to find out more about Npower’s prices and where it gets its fuel from.

Find out how Npower compares with other energy companies – we reveal the full results of the best and worst energy companies.

Which? verdict on Npower

Npower’s days at the very bottom of the table have returned. For several years in a row it had the lowest customer score of all the energy companies included in our survey. Two years ago it moved clear of the bottom by a couple of places and last year it was 30th out of 35 firms.

This year, it shares its woeful one-star rating for value for money with the other worst performers, Scottish Power and SSE. Five other companies were rated a poor two stars for this – Ecotricity , E and traditional big firms British Gas, EDF Energy and Eon. 

Customers were reasonably satisfied with Npower’s customer service this year, giving it a fair three-star rating overall. 

It also scored three stars for the accuracy of its bills, but just two for bill clarity and how it handles complaints. 

Official data on how many complaints it receives show that Npower received a fairly high number of complaints in the first half of 2020 compared with other suppliers. There were more than 17 complaints per 1,000 Npower customers, while several other firms received fewer than three.

Npower resolved just 57% of these within two days but the majority of them within eight weeks. 

Since Npower customers have now moved to Eon Next, customers are likely to see changes over the next year.  

I think I pay more than I should for the amount of electricity I use.

Npower customer

I always find the bills complicated. They are never put in easy-to-read terms.

Npower customer

When we investigated energy companies' customer service waiting times in September and October 2020, we found that Npower took 21 minutes 41 seconds on average to put us through to a human when we phoned its customer services. 

That’s significantly longer than average (5 minutes 57 seconds across the 31 firms we included). Only three other providers, including rival British Gas, were slower.

It was much faster to use Npower's live chat; we found we got a human response in 4 minutes 18 seconds on average in our investigation.

Pros: Fair customer service according to its customers 

Cons: Poor value for money; slow to answer the phone

Can you join Npower with a prepayment meter?

Npower's customers have been moved to Eon Next. Eon Next supplies customers with prepayment meters.

If you were an Npower customer, Eon Next should send you a new gas card (your old one should still work while your account moves across). You won't need a new key. You can carry on using your Npower one.

Npower electricity sources

Npower in the news

Npower in 2021

March: Npower is paying 2,030 of its customers a total of £25,602.69 after overcharging them when they switched supplier or tariff between 2013 and 2020. It was one of 18 energy firms found by regulator Ofgem to have failed to uphold these rules. Over 1 million customers were affected.

Affected customers will receive £12.61 each, on average.

February: Npower removed its app after stolen login data was used to access customer accounts.

Customer data may have been viewed, including personal information (such as contact details, address, date of birth), partial financial information (sort codes and the last four digits of bank accounts, though not full account numbers), and how you prefer to be contacted.

Npower in 2020

September: Npower increased the cost of its off-peak night-time tariffs to bring it in line with the price cap set by energy regulator Ofgem, resulting in some customers' bills increasing by hundreds of pounds a year. 

Npower in 2019

November: Npower revealed that it lost 447,000 customers in the first nine months of 2019 as customers switched away from the traditional big firms.

September: Npower announced that it is now majority owned by Eon. The EU Commission approved the takeover of Npower’s parent company, Innogy, by Eon. 

If you’re an Npower customer, nothing has changed yet - you are still supplied and have customer service from Npower. Customers will gradually be moved over to Eon subsidiary Eon Next. 

April: Npower became the supply partner for Sainsbury's Energy. Through this brand it would sell 100% renewable electricity tariffs and reward customers with Nectar points.

It increased prices by 10% at the start of the month, adding £117 to the annual bills of around one million customers (based on a medium energy user). 

Prepayment meter customers saw prices rise by £106 a year.

Npower in 2018

December: Npower and SSE's proposed merger plan was scrapped. Innogy SE, Npower's parent company, said the two firms 'could not agree on a joint solution for the necessary direct and indirect financial contributions'. 

It said 'adverse developments in the UK retail market' and the default energy tariff price cap were both partly to blame. It would now be assessing different options for Npower's future.

Don’t pay too much for energy – use Which? Switch to find the cheapest gas and electricity deal.