Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • easygoing
    • By easygoing 13th Nov 17, 6:33 PM
    • 10Posts
    • 0Thanks
    easygoing
    OMG am I lighting up a town?
    • #1
    • 13th Nov 17, 6:33 PM
    OMG am I lighting up a town? 13th Nov 17 at 6:33 PM
    We are having a nightmare with our electricity bills. We are a normal 3 bedroom detached bungalow. Heated by oil (just changing). we use Electricity for all the normal things and for cooking. Our electricity bills over the last 2 years have been rising steeply. We now have quarterly bills of 2.5k per quarter. Yes, you read that right.... 2.5k per quarter. We have lived here for 10years and had normal bills of about £400 per year, tops!
    6 months ago, we had an energy efficient electric water heater, but that was only 6 months ago.
    Two years ago, our neighbours.. its a smallholding, no house, had electric fitted, running off the transformer which is on our land.
    We have fitted at the moment, a check meter. An engineer called out before it was fitted and checked our supply. He said, that out of 4 readings of calibrated testing, 2 read false. Hence the test meter. Today, we have had a phone call, asking for the readings and they appear to be reading correctly.
    It works out that our electricity bills will be amounting to 8 - 10k a year!
    Now I am no expert of average use of electricity in a house, but it cant be that much... can it?
    To be fair SSE have been very supportive and have treated us with the up most respect and understanding.
    But seriously, where do we go now ?
    We live in a detached bungalow, no neighbours to speak of, there are 4 adults that live here. Two disabled, one of 83 myself and my husband. So there is someone in all day.
    We use lights, tv, computers, cooker, dishwasher and washing machines with dryer. We also now have a eco water heater, (only because our boiler wouldn't send the hot water to the end of the house for my mums shower. )
    Mum has eco heaters two of them in her part of the house but obviously they only run in cold weather. We also have air conditioning in her part for the summer, if we need it, but its rarely on.
    that's it!! nothing more.
    Where do we go next, anyone been in this situation themselves?
Page 2
    • lstar337
    • By lstar337 21st Nov 17, 10:23 AM
    • 3,269 Posts
    • 1,761 Thanks
    lstar337
    The meter is in the bungalow. the transformer is about 400 ft from the meter. So I suppose that cancels that out.
    when SSE sent their engineer, they did exactly that.. turned everything off, used a calibrated heater and tested it for times. Twice is came back the correct reading and twice is came back as in incorrect reading.
    Andy_WSM, I find your comments hopeful as if I was honest, I'm a bit green on what KWH is average in a home. Even if I have a huge home with 10 bedrooms, it doesn't sound like I would be using that much.
    the water heater has been turned right down, so it only is on using E7, we have no heating at the moment due to the boiler break down, so we are only using the wall heater and the oven, along with a few lights... lets hope, I managed to save something. So far I owe the electricity board £3700 for 6 months.. I refuse to pay the £622 they want per month and have continued to pay the £209 per month for the time being.
    Will keep reading the meter and test meter and feed back to you all..
    Originally posted by easygoing
    You can rest easy that what you are being charged for is far from average. To put it in perspective, I pay less than £300 a year for my usage in a 3 bed house. Although I am not really average either, you can see the huge gap between us.

    There is something wrong going on here, I don't think anybody doubts that! It's just a case of finding what it is.

    The good thing is that if the issue isn't with you, you could be looking at a tidy some of money paid back to you.
    • teddysmum
    • By teddysmum 21st Nov 17, 12:00 PM
    • 8,606 Posts
    • 5,093 Thanks
    teddysmum
    We have a 3 bedroomed semi occupied by the two of us, two cavaliers and a metre long tank of tropical fish. (heater and pump working)


    We use a washing machine about three times a week, the tumble dryer on wet or very cold days ,but dishes are done by hand as the dishwasher is broken and awaits replacement. We are running a fridge freezer and an upright freezer in the garage,cooking is by electricity (regular use of cooker, microwave, kettle,with very occasional use of a bread maker).


    The main 42"tv has a Sky box and the small bedroom tv has a Humax box not used for recording. Heating and hot water are by gas combi (so no wasted heat on stored water).


    We have two laptops, mine being on all day (as is the heating which uses some electricity ) and my husband's being on for about 4 hours/day. My laptop is Bluetooth linked to 3 mains electric speakers and until this summer I used a Wii for 1-2 hours' exercise 5 days a week.


    On this our usage is 7+ Kwh for most of the year, straying into just over 8Kwh in winter.


    This was even so when the old boiler broke and we had to use kettles for all hot water and a back up, for the gas fire, from a thermostatically controlled up to 3Kwh electric oil filled radiator. (We still use this in the kitchen ,after having the its central heating radiator removed, if the weather is very cold.)
    Last edited by teddysmum; 21-11-2017 at 12:04 PM.
    • easygoing
    • By easygoing 22nd Nov 17, 5:30 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    easygoing
    We have had the meter and check meter read again today. They have told us from 30th October to today we have used £320. We are on standard tariff with SSE! ANYONE!! Please. They are saying, that I what we are using. does anyone know who I can call out to check everything.. it cant be right.
    • Hengus
    • By Hengus 22nd Nov 17, 6:00 PM
    • 4,639 Posts
    • 2,812 Thanks
    Hengus
    We have had the meter and check meter read again today. They have told us from 30th October to today we have used £320. We are on standard tariff with SSE! ANYONE!! Please. They are saying, that I what we are using. does anyone know who I can call out to check everything.. it cant be right.
    Originally posted by easygoing
    Try an electrician. If both meters are recording usage, then the problem sits on your side of the meter. This is your responsibility: suppliers will just sit back and bill you for the electricity consumed. You mentioned ‘barns’ in your original post. Are you sure that electricity is not be routed via your meter to these buildings? A good electrician should be able to check where electricity is being consumed.
    • Robin9
    • By Robin9 22nd Nov 17, 7:36 PM
    • 1,946 Posts
    • 1,260 Thanks
    Robin9
    You need to get yourself on a better tariff with SSE - standard tariff is expensive.

    But that's not the root problem.

    You have mentioned small holding, barns and neighbours. Was this once a farm ?

    Farms can grow like Topsy and their electrical distribution with it. Perhaps your bungalow is supplying a water pump or the adjacent barns.

    You need to turn detective !
    Never pay on an estimated bill
    • D_M_E
    • By D_M_E 22nd Nov 17, 10:37 PM
    • 1,296 Posts
    • 63,148 Thanks
    D_M_E
    4 tests, two of them passed and two of them failed - why was this not investigated further?

    Why did two of the tests fail?

    Have you tried reading the meter then shutting off the main supply switch for a couple of hours or so then reading it again to see if it moves - if it does, you know for sure that either the meter is faulty or there is something leeching/feeding off your supply.
    • lstar337
    • By lstar337 23rd Nov 17, 10:27 AM
    • 3,269 Posts
    • 1,761 Thanks
    lstar337
    4 tests, two of them passed and two of them failed - why was this not investigated further?

    Why did two of the tests fail?

    Have you tried reading the meter then shutting off the main supply switch for a couple of hours or so then reading it again to see if it moves - if it does, you know for sure that either the meter is faulty or there is something leeching/feeding off your supply.
    Originally posted by D_M_E
    Also, throw the main switch to off and see if all your neighbours go off too.
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 23rd Nov 17, 11:41 AM
    • 27,103 Posts
    • 13,219 Thanks
    Cardew
    OP, from your earlier post you stated that SSE are investigating. Is that investigation still ongoing?

    To be fair SSE have been very supportive and have treated us with the up most respect and understanding.
    It has been established without question something is drastically wrong with your supply and there seems little point in loads of posts on saving little amounts of electricity.

    If you are not happy with SSE's handling of your problem, submit a formal complaint.
    • easygoing
    • By easygoing 23rd Nov 17, 7:57 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    easygoing
    It would appear that as far as they are concerned, the test meter reads the same. We have booked an electrician to come in next week, to test all appliances for us. We are currently using candles and due to the failure of a company who were to fit air source heating today, are huddled around a long burner. Great!! I will update when we have news on electrical items in our home. Can it get worse?!!! two disabled people in the home and we are not having fun!! ha ha.
    • silverwhistle
    • By silverwhistle 23rd Nov 17, 10:49 PM
    • 1,673 Posts
    • 2,194 Thanks
    silverwhistle
    With what you're being charged it might be worth emptying the freezer and going away for a few days holiday whilst you switch everything off. If any other people are using your supply they'll jump up and down, and if your meter continues to revolve then there's an issue..
    • somersethillbilly
    • By somersethillbilly 24th Nov 17, 12:15 AM
    • 505 Posts
    • 402 Thanks
    somersethillbilly
    To me, it seems our electricity is going elsewhere, but we are on our own here, with just a small holding without house, but barns next door.
    Originally posted by easygoing
    Neighbour's got a "grow" going on? Piggy backing off your electricity?
    • JC_Derby
    • By JC_Derby 25th Nov 17, 12:22 PM
    • 623 Posts
    • 219 Thanks
    JC_Derby
    It would appear that as far as they are concerned, the test meter reads the same. We have booked an electrician to come in next week, to test all appliances for us. We are currently using candles and due to the failure of a company who were to fit air source heating today, are huddled around a long burner. Great!! I will update when we have news on electrical items in our home. Can it get worse?!!! two disabled people in the home and we are not having fun!! ha ha.
    Originally posted by easygoing

    Hello Easy....
    I think you have been offered some good advice on here. Im slightly concerned that you haven't yet followed Prodaves advice. With the likely charges that you are incurring...YOU need to act now and try to locate where this electricity is being used NOW.
    An electrician coming in next week? That's incurring another £80 of charges (per week) if your bill continues to click on at the same rate.


    Prodave has asked for a photograph on the distribution set up.
    What he actually means, is the incoming supply with meter and the tails (grey wires) from meter to your consumer unit/distribution board. This IS the first place to start.
    I've said this to people before, but the responsibility is now yours, if YOU don't act now, you are incurring more costs due to your own lack of effort - Brutal and blunt I know, but we can definitely help you on here and quite quickly.
    Please let us help you here, but you do now need to act quickly.
    Apologies if you are physically unable to do this through disability or age - please get someone who can do this to come round.
    Last edited by JC_Derby; 25-11-2017 at 12:27 PM.
    • JC_Derby
    • By JC_Derby 25th Nov 17, 12:34 PM
    • 623 Posts
    • 219 Thanks
    JC_Derby
    Some questions from your first post if you don't mind


    1 - Where is your electricity meter? is it in your bungalow?
    2 - does your own electricity system run anywhere outside of the bungalow...do you have power to any other/out buildings
    3 - You said the neighbouring property had electricity 2 years ago, taken from the transformer on your land....are you being paid a wayleave for this?
    4 - who connected the neighbours electricity connection
    5 - who is your local distribution Network Operator and have you spoken to them?
    • easygoing
    • By easygoing 27th Nov 17, 9:49 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    easygoing
    Hi JC Derby, I'm sorry, I seem to have missed the request from Prodave. I will get on to that.. (mum currently in hospital, no excuses I know, but its been a bit frantic) Not had the best of weeks.. no heating.. silly electricity bills, failed installation on air source heating company, should have put in last week.. don't get me started.. lost dads wedding ring, He died just under two years ago.. and now mum rushed in. I am not one to give in to a fight.. SSE apparently have rang again today and are not pushing us due to us calling in electrician. No.. we should get a wayleave on two posts in our garden, another fight we are yet to have. Western power put the electricity into the small holding. They cut our tree down, after the neighbours said it was theirs. Was not happy.. so remember clearly when that happened. Seems we are the unluckiest people going at times. If it goes wrong, it goes mega wrong for us!! Will feed back with the photos of the feed.
    • Robin9
    • By Robin9 28th Nov 17, 7:21 AM
    • 1,946 Posts
    • 1,260 Thanks
    Robin9
    . Our electricity bills over the last 2 years have been rising steeply. .........................

    Two years ago, our neighbours.. its a smallholding, no house, had electric fitted, running off the transformer which is on our land. .............................
    Originally posted by easygoing
    Going right back to your original post I am suspecting that your neighbours smallholding is still supplied via your bungalow. Although they may have had the electricity supply installed perhaps it has never been metered or the wiring never transferred from your bungalow.

    Can your electrician get access to your neighbours property ?
    Never pay on an estimated bill
    • Boohoo
    • By Boohoo 28th Nov 17, 9:06 AM
    • 515 Posts
    • 42 Thanks
    Boohoo
    Going right back to your original post I am suspecting that your neighbours smallholding is still supplied via your bungalow. Although they may have had the electricity supply installed perhaps it has never been metered or the wiring never transferred from your bungalow.

    Can your electrician get access to your neighbours property ?
    Originally posted by Robin9
    I don't know if this will help you or has benn advised before.


    In the late 80's or early 90's me and 2 mates rented a 3 bed house. The dowstairs part was used by the landlord for shop storage who converted the house so when you went in the front door you had the stairs there and under the stairs was a coin meter and the rest of the downstairs was partioned off so no access to what was the kitchen, front room and dining room.
    All 3 of us were working during the and in the pub at night times being in our early 20's.
    We were putting in loads of 50 pence into the meter and i think we were spending £15 a week.
    Anyhow 1 weekend we were all comming back from work and saw the landlord in the shop and asked him about the meter and he said previous people had said the meter must be set high and when the electric board come round to collect the money we should have a good rebate.
    This went on for 3/4 months and one night while he was downstirs in the storage part of the house our electric ran out and we noticed his lights were off so we went out into the street thinking there was a power cut but the street lights were on and so were other houses lights.
    Put 2 50p's in the meter and the lights came on and so did his.
    All 3 of us were ready to round to see him and give him a thump but we decided to wait and the next night we knew he was in the storage part as the lights were on and he took a delivery of stock so what we did was turn the power off and we heard a crash and a few swear words. Waited 15 secs and put the power on for a min or 2 and then turned it off again and all the lights went off including his.
    We confronted him about this and he denied that out meter was supplying the whole house. In the end we used to turn the power off when we all went to work(we had no heating or fridge just a cooker in the house) and then turn it on when we came back. This lasted 1 week and then the landlord came round and said the spark had not put in a meter for his part of the house(later we found out that it had been like this for 2 years from ex-tennants) and said untill it gets sorted he will deduct £5 a week rent for this. We said ok but we still turned the electric off when all left the house. We stayed there fo 4/5 months until we got another place.
    I know this is a long post but what you could do is if you can see your neighbours house wiat to its night time and then turn the power off and see if their lights go off aswell. If they do then they are connected to your power and you are paying like we were.
    Good luck.
    • rdr
    • By rdr 28th Nov 17, 12:23 PM
    • 281 Posts
    • 220 Thanks
    rdr
    Any strange smells from the barns?
    • Robin9
    • By Robin9 2nd Dec 17, 6:11 AM
    • 1,946 Posts
    • 1,260 Thanks
    Robin9
    Easygoing - What did the electrician find ?
    Never pay on an estimated bill
    • JC_Derby
    • By JC_Derby 5th Dec 17, 9:49 PM
    • 623 Posts
    • 219 Thanks
    JC_Derby
    Any advance with this easy? I have PM'd you too
    • lstar337
    • By lstar337 6th Dec 17, 10:04 AM
    • 3,269 Posts
    • 1,761 Thanks
    lstar337
    Yeah, the suspense is killing me! What is the conclusion of this story?
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

2,599Posts Today

7,478Users online

Martin's Twitter