Electricity Bill!!! #%$&*%@#

Electricity Bill!!! #%$&*%@#

Postby Bianca » Wed Nov 23, 2011 10:22 am

Hi everyone,

There has been a topic about this but it dates back to 2008 so I think i'll start a new one.

I just moved in to my own apartment. My landlord sent me the electricity bill history and it's never gone over R500.

This is the first month I've had to pay for my own (I've only been in my place for a month and a bit and the last place was on a pay-as-you-go system), and the electricity bill is higher this month than it's ever been. Even my landlord was surprised.

I have 3 tanks. Two of the tanks have two heating pads. One for warmth and one for humidity. The 3rd tank only has 1 heating pad. No lights, I have timers on 3 of the heating pads. Nothing fancy or big.

Can anyone give me an idea on what to expect now that I'm paying for my own electricity and whether this sounds justified or not? I know that my electricity bill is a lot smaller than people living in houses with kids etc. But I am still young and still on a tight budget and this is worrying me. I wanted to get more reptiles but now I'm thinking twice...

Any other thoughts or discussions on this electricity bill subject are good too.
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Re: Electricity Bill!!! #%$&*%@#

Postby Westley Price » Wed Nov 23, 2011 10:32 am

Sounds a bit suspect to me.

In simple terms, the wattage of a heating pad is quite low, which means it does not use a lot of power.

The timer would not have an influence as it is only a switch.

I stay with my girlfriend and I have ten heating pad running on thermostats. I also have a fish tank with heater and lights, television and all the other basics and my bill is lower than yours.

Do you have a dedicated geyser? Have a look at your geyser setting. The geysers are often set a lot higher than they should be and this results in a higher bill, but it still doesn't answer why your bill is so much higher this month compared to last.

In fact, you usage should go down in summer.

Good luck.
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Re: Electricity Bill!!! #%$&*%@#

Postby dodge » Wed Nov 23, 2011 11:59 am

Hey man.

I am currently on a pre paid system, I have 3 tanks all with lights and heat pads and
with 2 of us in the house I only spend R400 per month max in the summer.
When I was not be on a pre paid system my bill was max R300 per month.

I think what they do(what they use to do with me) is they take one measurement for all the units in a townhouse complex and just divide it amoung everyone, so you will never pay for what you actually use. So maybe check up on that ! (sometimes you score)

Hope you come right !
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Re: Electricity Bill!!! #%$&*%@#

Postby nbdreyer » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:31 pm

I had a simmilar problem in my previous house. The meter readers do not come round every month or one month they come in the beginning of the month and the next month at the end. So they guess the reading. There were also tarrif increases in the last few months. Compare bills from the previous months to find out about the tarrif increase. Take regular readings of the meter from now on to compare it to the so called reading on your next bill.

As the previous guys said, those heat pads use very little power. Use the rate on your bill to work out how much a heat pad cost per month if you run it 24/7 to get a good idea of how much it will cost if it were on 24/7.
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Re: Electricity Bill!!! #%$&*%@#

Postby Fugly » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:33 pm

Like Westley said, have a look at your geyser. I had a problem with my geyser in a house before.
You can set it to 55 degrees and it is still warm enough. I had a geyser on 85 degrees and that thing loved electricity.
When you set it, take it down pass 55 degrees and then move it up to 55 degrees, some thermostats give problems when you just move it down, it will keep on working on the
previous temperature.

Hope you can fix your problem.
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Re: Electricity Bill!!! #%$&*%@#

Postby froot » Thu Nov 24, 2011 9:25 am

What the people at the council are doing is this...
The account with the council is in a constant state of fluidity so whatever amount you pay is recorded and not lost, so for instance your bill is R1500 and you pay R1200 the deficit is added to the following month's bill. If you pay R1800 then the excess is credited to the following month's bill. What they do is charge more than you are using, the reference being what they call an 'estimate' which they extrapolate from somewhere in their colons, and then after a while they go back to the meter readings and credit what they've overcharged. You get your money back but they get to enjoy the interest earned on your money in the interim. Do this with every household and were talking about a mind blowing amount of cash from that interest which they need for drugs, overseas holidays and christmas presents.
What you can do to circumvent this rogering is phone your meter reading every month and see to it that it is entered into your account but good luck making your way through all the unpolishable turds until you find someone capable of pulling this off, it suits them like that.
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Re: Electricity Bill!!! #%$&*%@#

Postby Slingshot » Thu Nov 24, 2011 10:09 am

Roughly what froot said is what is probably happening to you. It is possible that they used an estimate based on the previous tenant's usage and started yours off on that figure. My electricity bill gets adjusted to the correct value every 3 months it seems, when they take an actual reading. I've noticed that after this reading, they use the actual usage as the estimate for the next 3 months. So the estimate value is adjusted according to your average usage (at least in the Durban area).

Edit: reading that again gives me a micro-headache. Hope it made sense. Just give it 3-4 months, see if your monthly bill drops to more realistic amounts.
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Re: Electricity Bill!!! #%$&*%@#

Postby @ndy » Mon Nov 28, 2011 9:44 am

Hi All

Sorry to burst your bubble but you are all wrong on how it works, I work for Powertech IST and we audit and measure power consumption for Large power users as well as munics, there is a process that they follow to measure your consumption by using FAF pulses from a meter allocated to your residence, some older Munics still use manual meter readers (The dude that thumb-sucks a value) What you can do is get a Prepaid meter(That way they cannot screw you over) or you can have an AMR single phase meter installed where you can view your monthly consumption on the net.

Allot of people think that switching off your Geysers saves power, but no one takes into account that the moment you switch it back on you create a huge consumption spike, you can lower the temp of your geyser but good luck getting that done in a complex, the best thing to do is get a geyser blanket installed, that way your geyser stays warmer for longer and the element in your geyser does not ave to switch on as often to heat the water back to the set temp. Lights,kettle,microwave,heaters and geysers are the most power consuming in your house, Keep the lights off where possible and switch to LED lights where possible

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Re: Electricity Bill!!! #%$&*%@#

Postby bubblesharp » Mon Nov 28, 2011 9:42 pm

@@ndy, In the perfect world what you are saying would happen in the cities, but its neither a perfect world nor is this the way it actually happens. The way Froot explained it is exactly what they are doing in Pretoria and many parts in JHB. Our bill fluctuates between R800 and R1500, one month high next month low. Nothing changes in the usage. Swimming pool on timer, all cages on timers etc.
So which other explanation can there be for a R500 fluctuation, and it clearly states the credit that they pass for over payment on the previous bill.
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