Electric Boiler Costing A Fortune!

I've just moved in to a 2 bed bungalow that has a 12kw potterton electric boiler. My 1st month's electric bill was over £2500! However this was thought to be a mistake and the electric company fitted a new meter. I can now see that it is the electric boiler using around £2 per hour! Does anyone have any ideas why it would cost soo much?
Thanks
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  • MeteredOut
    MeteredOut Posts: 1,124
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    edited 1 February at 4:46PM
    Can you provide more details of your overall setup.

    What actual kWh usage do you have? Have you confirmed the £2500 bill matches the usage? Do you have a smart meter or submit manual meter readings? Did you submit the correct opening meter reading when you moved into the property and is the bill based off that?

    What type of heating do you have (radiators with TRVs?), number of rooms, do you have thermostats, and their and the boilers schedules/temperature/flow settings. ie. how often are you calling for heat.

    Do you have a hot water tank - probably not, but if so, is it run off the boiler or a separate immersion heater? Are your showers electric or do they run off the boiler/hot water tank? How often do you shower - in a non-intrusive and non-judgemental way of asking :)?
  • Reed_Richards
    Reed_Richards Posts: 3,997
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    Electric boilers are one of the most expensive ways you can find to heat a house.  £2 per hour would be roughly 7kWh per hour.  That's a lot but not impossibly much.  Can you improve your insulation?  Can you replace your electric boiler with a gas boiler or an oil boiler or a heat pump?  Any one of those should cost about 1/3 to run compared to what you are paying at present.
    Reed
  • Robin9
    Robin9 Posts: 11,973
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    Is this a  boiler supplying a conventional wet radiator system ?  If so perhaps the worst heating system known to man, It is using day time rates and £2 an hour is quite likely.

    Is this boiler on 24 hours a day -  if so put it on a timer and restrict the hours.
    Never pay on an estimated bill
  • cymruchris
    cymruchris Posts: 4,893
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    lukel1988 said:
    I've just moved in to a 2 bed bungalow that has a 12kw potterton electric boiler. My 1st month's electric bill was over £2500! However this was thought to be a mistake and the electric company fitted a new meter. I can now see that it is the electric boiler using around £2 per hour! Does anyone have any ideas why it would cost soo much?
    Thanks

    I haven't experienced the boiler you have - so my questions might prove irrelevant - but the first things that come to mind are:

    How often are you running the heating? 

    What temperature are your thermostats set at? 

    Does the loft have insulation? 

    Is the heating 'ON' 24/7 or on a schedule? If so what's the schedule set at? 

    I can imagine that if the boiler was running at peak capacity 24/7 then it might come up to a bill that big. Online indications seem to show that at peak power consumption they can cost over a £1 an hour to run when they're 'heating' - but can't imagine you're 'heating' all day and night every day? 

    It would also depend on what your electricity tariff was as well. Are you on a regular electric connection connected to one of the usual big name suppliers paying fairly average standard costs?
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  • molerat
    molerat Posts: 31,567
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    edited 3 February at 5:28PM
    As others have said, unfortunately one of the most expensive forms of heating available.  At peak capacity it will cost 12 x 28.5p = £3.42 per hour.   £2 per hour suggests a 58% loading so 7 kW effective heating.  Quite possible but on the very high side of normal which may suggest you are heating too high or a very poorly insulated property.  In winter, with gas, I use an effective 2.5 kW for heat and hot water once the house is up to temperature, in the cold winter of 2010-11 I only used a maximum effective 4 kW.
  • Robin9
    Robin9 Posts: 11,973
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    To add - you are in a bungalow which costs more than a house to heat.
    Never pay on an estimated bill
  • QrizB
    QrizB Posts: 13,665
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    lukel1988 said:
    I've just moved in to a 2 bed bungalow that has a 12kw potterton electric boiler.
    You have my commiserations.
    lukel1988 said:
     I can now see that it is the electric boiler using around £2 per hour! Does anyone have any ideas why it would cost soo much?
    A 12kW boiler running flat out, will use 12kWh of electricity every hour. On the standard variable tariff, one kWh of electricity currently costs about 27p. 12kWh works out as £3.24. You can think of this as the maximum your heating could cost (at least until prices change).
    In practice the boiler shouldn't need to run continuously at full power, so £2 per hour is entirely possible.
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  • FreeBear
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    Electric boilers are one of the most expensive ways you can find to heat a house.  £2 per hour would be roughly 7kWh per hour.  That's a lot but not impossibly much.  Can you improve your insulation?  Can you replace your electric boiler with a gas boiler or an oil boiler or a heat pump?  Any one of those should cost about 1/3 to run compared to what you are paying at present.
    An average house would have a typical heat demand of around 7kW. A 2 bed bungalow, I would expect to be much lower. With a monthly bill of £2500, I'd be looking at whacking in a heat pump pretty darned quick, The savings over just one winter would probably cover the installation cost. But if this is a rented property, you're pretty well stuck with it unless the landlord can be persuaded to make the investment.

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  • Reed_Richards
    Reed_Richards Posts: 3,997
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    FreeBear said:

    An average house would have a typical heat demand of around 7kW. A 2 bed bungalow, I would expect to be much lower. 
    My bungalow, which has 4 bedrooms and is reasonably well-insulated, has a calculated demand of 9 kW when the outside temperature is -3.7 C.  So I can just about imagine that a less well-insulated 2-bed bungalow might average 7 kW of heat loss/demand during the coldest month of the year.  I agree that seems a bit of a stretch, but it's far from impossible.  
    Reed
  • FreeBear
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