Electric Boiler Costing A Fortune!

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  • Belenus
    Belenus Posts: 2,548 Forumite
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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
    Is that bill for exactly one month? If yes, then that suggests an error in billing.

    There are about 730 hours in a month. £2,500 is £3.42 per hour.

    £2  x 730 = £1,460.

    Get the meter reading and possibly the meter checked.

    The above is a bit rushed as I have to go out so there may have an error.
    A man walked into a car showroom.
    He said to the salesman, “My wife would like to talk to you about the Volkswagen Golf in the showroom window.”
    Salesman said, “We haven't got a Volkswagen Golf in the showroom window.”
    The man replied, “You have now mate".
  • markin
    markin Posts: 3,842 Forumite
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    Moveing to Octopus and get on tracker tariff could save a lot, And if you are currently on E7 and stuck because of debt only use it at night.
  • Qyburn
    Qyburn Posts: 2,285 Forumite
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    markin said:
    Moveing to Octopus and get on tracker tariff could save a lot, And if you are currently on E7 and stuck because of debt only use it at night.
    Or it could cost more, all depending on future wholesale prices. It's not a guaranteed saving.
  • dunstonh
    dunstonh Posts: 116,252 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Anniversary First Post Combo Breaker
    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
    Owned or rented?

    A lot of landlords have stripped out storage heaters that powered up for 7 hours on a cheap rate overnight and replaced them with cheap electric units that put the cost on tenants instead.

    If you are still on an economy 7 tarrif, then that will also be costing you more as the heating storage is not done overnight but during peak hours.

    If you own the property, you need to be looking at alternatives PDQ.
    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). The comments I make are just my opinion and are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice and you should not treat them as such. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from an Independent Financial Adviser local to you.
  • Scot_39
    Scot_39 Posts: 1,801 Forumite
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    edited 3 February at 10:42PM
    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

    If you were used to gas heating - any electric heating short of an efficiently installed and operated ASHP / GSHP - is going to seem very expensive.  Many moving over to electric often face a massive bill shock.

    The reason is simple enough

    Gas is now just over 7p / kWh
    Electric - single rate c28p
    Even on multirate - you might be on E7 for just 7 hours at off peak rates say 12-16p depending on region/supplier and then 35-40p peak for the rest of the day.

    Obviously paying for heat or hot water at E7 peak rate is the worst case scenario.  But some do end up doing so to too far a high level. As it's only really suitable for storage based heating and hot water tank heating - pay for heat at low rate - release heat / use hot water from tank as needed throughout day.

    £2500 at say 27.5p = c9000kWh for last month (allowing £20 for SC - was it 31 days - or longer / shorter) = or c300kWh per day = just under 12kW power usage 24/7.

    The other thing is that in a 2 bed you have the 12kW rated model - ranges like their "gold" started off at a much lower 4kW on some sales sites from a quick google - but that's power - it's how long it uses it for - that determins the bill - so total energy averaged over the day. (In simplistic terms it would take a 4kW heater - 3x as long as a 12kW one - to heat your hot water / radiators from cold - but it would still use the same energy - 4x3 = 12x1 etc so cost the same).  But it could also be rated that high - as that is what the energy efficiency of the home needs to heat to 21C or above etc.

    You now have a smart meter - so how often were you seeing the £2 level - thats I guess about 7.5-8kW power at single rate - if thats 24/7 - which still seems unlikely - thats still - 192 kWh per day / 5760 kWh per month.

    But for instance for just a few hours after switch on - as lifts the room temperatures from say ovenight lows
    .
    (I could for instance worry when in cold weather I see my HW immersion and night storage heaters take over 10kW 3 times per day - but it's not continuous - it's part time - the NSH themselves might take a similar c7kW - for upto 1.5-2 hours at a time 3x per day - but that still normally adds upto under 30kWh even in a cold spell given how low I run the house /  unused spaces etc)

    It's turned pretty warm in the south now - but if you have the IHD with your smart meter - can you give an idea of past few days / or more likely weeks if in for long enough back to the cold days - of actual total electricity consumption - rather than a spot check - in kWh not £ preferably.

    Do you know what tariff is and if E7 - how much can you shift to only E7 hours (seems unlikely the house will retain heat given the sort of costs you are talking about though)  (All prices above assuming you are on a standard domestic supply - not some community heat scheme in a sheltered estate etc - so perhaps quote kWh not £ - as that is the actual energy - costs for some in flats etc are still often double those rates above)

    You might at least be able to stop the boiler from heating up the hot water tank ( the brief summary spec on one sales site for a potterton gold - suggested it could use a hot water tank)

    And again that model was for a wet radiator install - so if simillar - you probably have a wet system - radiators and pipes etc - an ASHP might be worth looking into - and with the govt grant South of Border now increased to £7500 - many needing minimal other work - are often as good as free.

    Even if not and an owner - you need to look at more efficient home and efficient heating (if you don't have a good wet system - room by room air to air - might be a cheaper route to ASHP COP energy savings)

    At a COP of 3 - an ASHP would have reduced that one months bill - if was real - to a more managable - say £850 - but it's the consumption that implies that worries me.
     
    So you might have to do quite a bit more on insulation to get it and have it operating efficiently.

    And check on quick lower cost insulation - like loft insulation thickness - my mum's was upgraded for free - it was only 4" - it's easily double that - but the modern standard is more like 10-12" iirc (govt guidance 270mm c11").

    If you have bought - what does the EPC certificate say about hot water and heating energy consumption for the property ?

    How hot are you running the property - and are you dropping temps e/g/ overnight and in any unused rooms - e.g. by using radiator TRVs ?

    If you are renting - your options are more limitted - but there are some schemes open to tennants too.




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