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Topic Title: Power surge and big electric bill
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Created On: 26 April 2013 12:11 PM
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 26 April 2013 12:11 PM
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sparkingchip

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I'm at home watching daytime telly on account of having pharyngitis (sore throat and man flu) my wife won't let me watch Jeremy Kyle as she said it will curdle my brain, so I just watched our mate Dom

The issue was a £2000 electric bill which was in dispute, the householder claiming it was due to a power surge that had occurred melting the meter tails so not her responsibility.

How possible is it that this is true?

Andy
 26 April 2013 06:11 PM
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DOUGIE1000

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Can't see a surge melting any PVC on double insulated or single for that mater.

Surges on supply wouldn't create heat in wiring, only overload in conductors

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Dougie
Power Plus Electrical.co.uk

My mission is to live as long as possible......so far so good!
 26 April 2013 06:18 PM
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slittle

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The power surge was more likely due to the extra lighting and heating added to the loft

Stu
 26 April 2013 06:35 PM
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stateit

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... but Dom's always right!!

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S George
http://www.sg-electrical.com
 26 April 2013 07:12 PM
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sparkingchip

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I make it around fourteen to fifteen thousand additional Kwh run through the system, surely in one hit that would have just blown the meter up rather than running the dial on.

I think it was used

Andy
 27 April 2013 01:11 AM
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alancapon

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I would tend to agree that I believe it was used within the customer's installation (on the "Load" side of the electricity meter). However, whether it was used by current using equipment or used as a result of a phase to neutral or phase to earth fault that did not operate a protective device, it is not possible to say.

Regards,

Alan.
 27 April 2013 08:34 AM
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weirdbeard

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From what I can gather, i reckon the first 2 quarterly bills might have been estimates and the 3rd one the actual readings?

Tails melted but not the meter - possibly just a loose connection somewhere?

@6mins20 - "There was so much electricity running through the house an electrician who came and tested on the walls said it was dangerous to be in the house"

The disputed amount over 9 months £1850 (£2000-the expected £150)
1850/9months=£205 per month

205/4weeks = £50.38 per week

50.38/7days= £7.34 per day

7.34/24hours = £0.305 per hour

cost per unit approx £0.15

So a 2kW heater or similar left switched on would be my guess.

A waste of licence payers money, the electric company just got fed up listening to doms whining!

Best bit - @ 35 minutes, Elton John moonlighting as a chartered electrical engineer
 27 April 2013 10:53 AM
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alancapon

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Originally posted by: weirdbeard
. . . A waste of licence payers money, the electric company just got fed up listening to doms whining! . . .

Pretty much in my opinion. The electricity company will still have to have paid for the electricity from their supplier (which may be the electricity pool), so will need to recover the money by dividing it between all their customers. Hardly a victory for all the others!

Regards,

Alan.
 27 April 2013 12:52 PM
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slittle

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I've had several jobs this winter with tenants moaning about their bills (and meter readings) on the farms.

When you point to the 2 or 3 kw heaters in their offices and explain that each of them is a couple of units per hour they tend to shut up pretty quick


Stu
 27 April 2013 01:01 PM
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sparkingchip

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A Fault giving a draw of say around 6Kwh or some heaters or dryers, the later seems more probable.

Andy
 27 April 2013 05:16 PM
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weirdbeard

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Originally posted by: sparkingchip

A Fault giving a draw of say around 6Kwh or some heaters or dryers, the later seems more probable.



Yes Andy,6kWh would be about on the mark if the figure related to actual readings taken in the relevant quarter, but the first 2 quarterly bills could simply have been estimates, and the 3rd quarter based on the actual reading taken (I believe the supply companies are only obliged to take actual readings once in 2 years), so 2kWh seems to me to be a more likely figure.
 29 April 2013 11:33 AM
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AJJewsbury

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So a 2kW heater or similar left switched on would be my guess.

Just thinking out loud - what about a L-earth fault on a TT install before the RCD? A good rod that has a resistance of a couple of dozen Ohms might be able to account for it (providing all that current didn't dry out the ground around it too much).

- Andy.
 29 April 2013 11:47 AM
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perspicacious

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"what about a L-earth fault on a TT install before the RCD?"

Difficult to picture Andy mindful of 531.4.1

Regards

BOD
 29 April 2013 12:43 PM
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AJJewsbury

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Difficult to picture Andy mindful of 531.4.1

How far apart are pre-RCD Ls and PE in a typical dual-RCD CU these days? (typically with L looping into the top of both RCDs, so often quite close to the earth bar, never mind stray c.p.c.s).

Just one random image courtesy of google:
http://www.sg-electrical.com/i...20unit%20upgrades.jpg


pretty typical example I would have thought.

- Andy.

(edited as we don't seem able to include images either at the moment)
(edited again now links are working)

Edited: 29 April 2013 at 03:20 PM by AJJewsbury
 29 April 2013 12:54 PM
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OMS

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Or even a faulty RCD and a L-PE fault anywhere in the installation - maybe including part of a load - RCD's are not the most reliable of things - and heaven knows I've heard tell of some people bypassing them to avoid "nuisance" tripping problems.

regards

OMS

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 29 April 2013 07:30 PM
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sparkingchip

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"Just one random image courtesy of google"

really?
 30 April 2013 09:42 AM
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AJJewsbury

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really?

It was! honestly - I just googled images for 'consumer unit' - it was in the top 20 and the first to show a dual-RCD unit fully wired with the lid off.

- Andy.
 01 May 2013 05:29 PM
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amandalewin

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My parents just got a bit of a shocking electricity bill for what used to be my Grandma's house. They had left some of the storage heaters on over the winter to stop things freezing up but weren't actually staying there much. Anyway it turned out the economy 7 meter had got stuck on off peak so the storage heaters were running 24/7. They got a refund eventually.

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Amanda

'At some point we all must chose between what is right and what is awesome'
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