The National Grid has announced it will be bringing back a popular scheme that helped millions of Brits battle the cost of living crisis last winter, The Demand Flexibility Service (DFS).

The DFS allows you to earn rewards for shifting electricity usage outside of peak demand hours.  This allows the Electricity System Operator (ESO) to manage supply through periods when margins are tight.  

The DFS was introduced in winter 2022/23 and over 1.6m households and businesses participated, providing ~350MW of flexibility to the ESO. The Demand Flexibility Service will run from today until March 31 next year, just like last year.

Last winter, £11million was paid out to the 1.6 million participants of the DFS scheme.

12 one hour tests will run between November and March, although in some cases an individual test could last longer. During the tests, those who have signed up should try and reduce their electricity consumption.

The National Grid ESO told The Mirror that the amount of electricity a household saves on the day is compared to that individual household's average amount normally rather than the average of a larger group of households.

It's important to note that you can only sign up for the DFS if you have a smart meter or an electronic device measuring electricity use. Businesses with smart meters can also sign up.

Before the event, households that are signed up for the scheme provide their energy supplier with 60 days' worth of data from their smart meter.

This data is then analysed and 10 days where energy use for the household is most similar is used to work out the average electricity consumption for the home during the hours of the event.

If you want to sign up for the scheme and you have a working smart meter then you can do so through a registered DFS provider. The UK's big six energy suppliers British Gas, Octopus Energy, OVO Energy, EDF, E.ON Next, and Scottish Power are taking part.

You can find the full list of suppliers taking part on the ESO's website here.

The National Grid ESO said that many retail energy suppliers are taking part in the ESO’s DFS this year and will likely contact you if they are taking part.

Several online/app providers can provide access to the service by linking directly to your smart meter data without contacting your energy provider.

You should note that only one household can take part with one DFS-registered provider at any time.