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Southern Electric - worryingly high usage on prepay elec meter


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Hi all,

 

We have just moved into a rented house with prepay meters, which we have no experience with. Our first problem was not letting the utility company know immediately, as the stress of the place being filthy (which is a whole other thread!) and the normal moving stresses meant that we were just topping the meters up for 3 days.

 

We have now switched them to our name, and have no real problems with the gas, which is used only for the heating, water and hob. However, we seem to be using around £10 a day on electricity for a small three-bed house - this seems really high to me. This amount got used yesterday, even though we were out all day ant the only things drawing power (that we know of) were a Sky hub, a fridge and freezer, and a TV on standby. The TV is only a year old and brags about how little power it draws.

 

When my wife spoke to SSE today, they told her that this was a completely normal amount to be paying for an Economy 7 tariff, but it just doesn't add up to me. The day rate is 16.1p/kWh, which is only a bit more than the credit meter at our last house, but we were only billed around £50/month there. I know prepay meters cost more, but we're looking at nearly £300 a month now!

 

Any suggestions greatly appreciated.

fix (vb.):

1. to paper over, obscure, hide from public view;

2. to work around, in a way that produces unintended consequences that are worse than the original problem.

Usage: "Vista fixes many of the shortcomings of Windows XP".

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Thanks - apparently we are on their standard prepay tariff, which isn't much more than their standard credit one.

 

I have bipolar disorder, but I don't believe I'm considered 'vulnerable' by the government. Should that make a difference?

fix (vb.):

1. to paper over, obscure, hide from public view;

2. to work around, in a way that produces unintended consequences that are worse than the original problem.

Usage: "Vista fixes many of the shortcomings of Windows XP".

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Hi all,

 

We have just moved into a rented house with prepay meters, which we have no experience with. Our first problem was not letting the utility company know immediately, as the stress of the place being filthy (which is a whole other thread!) and the normal moving stresses meant that we were just topping the meters up for 3 days.

 

We have now switched them to our name, and have no real problems with the gas, which is used only for the heating, water and hob. However, we seem to be using around £10 a day on electricity for a small three-bed house - this seems really high to me. This amount got used yesterday, even though we were out all day ant the only things drawing power (that we know of) were a Sky hub, a fridge and freezer, and a TV on standby. The TV is only a year old and brags about how little power it draws.

 

When my wife spoke to SSE today, they told her that this was a completely normal amount to be paying for an Economy 7 tariff, but it just doesn't add up to me. The day rate is 16.1p/kWh, which is only a bit more than the credit meter at our last house, but we were only billed around £50/month there. I know prepay meters cost more, but we're looking at nearly £300 a month now!

 

Any suggestions greatly appreciated.

 

It could be that the pre-payment meter is set to recover a debt plus daily use !

 

The previous tenant could have been repaying a debt via the ppm and utility supplier has not update the account !

 

Also you don't have to have Economy 7 tariff if there No storage heaters, Change Tariffs...

 

Have a read of this as well http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/england/consumer_e/consumer_energy_and_water_supply_e/consumer_energy_supply_e/consumer_help_if_youre_older_disabled_or_on_a_low_income_e/warm_home_discount_scheme.htm

Please use the quote system, So everyone will know what your referring too, thank you ...

 

 

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Hi gk

 

The following gives you a good idea, as to whether your classed as 'Vulnerable' :-

 

http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/england/consumer_e/consumer_energy_and_water_supply_e/consumer_energy_supply_e/consumer_help_if_youre_older_disabled_or_on_a_low_income_e/extra_help_with_energy_if_youre_vulnerable_or_on_a_low_income_.htm

 

It might be their Standard Tariff, it's difficult to believe, for electricity you would be paying £3,600 per annum. I think you need to do some further research, other energy companies.

 

http://www.which.co.uk/switch/faqs/switching-eligibility-faqs/im-a-prepayment-customer-can-i-switch

 

Did you find out from them what rate your paying?

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Hi guys, thanks for the quick replies.

 

45002: I think I saw debt on the meter last night when scrolling through the displays, but they assured me that it has been wiped, and I can no longer see it. Fortunately, they have agreed to come out on Friday and fit a single-rate meter.

 

rebel11: Thanks for that - unfortunately, I don't meet any of the requirements on those pages. I have been quoted just over £2,000 for prepay by Ecotricity, so will be looking to switch, but I need to get the costs down in the immediate term - I added £5 to the meter about 4 1/2 hours ago, and it has eaten £2.82 since then. I think the usage has gone down a bit, but it still seems high! The tariff is 16.1p/kWh day rate, and (i think) 8.1p overnight.

fix (vb.):

1. to paper over, obscure, hide from public view;

2. to work around, in a way that produces unintended consequences that are worse than the original problem.

Usage: "Vista fixes many of the shortcomings of Windows XP".

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Hi gk

 

Give Southern Electric a call, get them to look at the meter. Carry out your own test to work out what the meter is charging you per kwh, day rate and night rate.

 

http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/wales/consumer_w/consumer_energy_and_water_supply_e/consumer_energy_supply_e/consumer_energy_bills_e/consumer_problems_with_energy_bills_e/if_you_think_your_energy_meter_is_faulty.htm

 

Hi guys, thanks for the quick replies.

 

45002: I think I saw debt on the meter last night when scrolling through the displays, but they assured me that it has been wiped, and I can no longer see it. Fortunately, they have agreed to come out on Friday and fit a single-rate meter.

 

rebel11: Thanks for that - unfortunately, I don't meet any of the requirements on those pages. I have been quoted just over £2,000 for prepay by Ecotricity, so will be looking to switch, but I need to get the costs down in the immediate term - I added £5 to the meter about 4 1/2 hours ago, and it has eaten £2.82 since then. I think the usage has gone down a bit, but it still seems high! The tariff is 16.1p/kWh day rate, and (i think) 8.1p overnight.

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If you have spent £2.82 in 4.5 hours that works out at about 17KW! Some pretty hefty usage if that's the case. Get Southern Electric out to check the meter as there is definitely something wrong - an average size electric heater is unlikely to consume more than 1.5 - 2 Kw per hour!

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Or your next door neighbour is stealing your electricity and running a marijuana crop in their house.

At least they should give you part of the crop :-P

Sorry, just jocking!

That sort of usage is extremely high.

You shouldn't use more than £100 a month, and that would be a lot.

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Hi,

 

Sorry for the late reply, but this is now solved - even though I also speculated about what sort of 'plant-growing' apparatus might be lurking in the loft!

 

It turns out the thermostat on the immersion heater is broken, so it was running at full pelt. We turned it off, and we're down to just over a pound a day. Still, I'm a bit miffed that the estate agent didn't check this before we moved in and spent nearly £60 keeping it running, especially as it isn't needed! They are going to receive a thoroughly amended inventory :(

 

Thanks though!

fix (vb.):

1. to paper over, obscure, hide from public view;

2. to work around, in a way that produces unintended consequences that are worse than the original problem.

Usage: "Vista fixes many of the shortcomings of Windows XP".

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