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455 posts

Ultimate Geek


# 177429 2-Aug-2015 13:06
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I have no idea if this is in the right category so any moderator feel free to move this to where it should be.

Story:
For the past 3 or 4 months our bill has been increasing by the hundreds for no apparent reason. At the moment we're at $1700 overdue. Now they claim that we're using 35.2KwH PER DAY.

Now that seems a bit absurd for a normal house hold right? There is no way in heck that we're using 35.2KwH.

For what we use daily we have 3 computers 2 of them are off at night and the other one is running over night(that's our file server which doesn't use more then 90W if that)
We do have only 1 fridge+freezer combo. We don't use a dishwasher or anything fancy. We do however use 2 heaters but only for no more then 30 minutes. They're 2400W respectively.
The house layout is split into two. We have the bigger end and our next door neighbor has the smaller front end. I've already inspected the meters that we use and only 1 of them is active which is the 24 hour one or as our power company says "Anytime"

My Father who is the billpayer is with Contact Energy(funny that they've recently been on Fair go for screwing up).

Now my question is. How likely is it that we've got a faulty meter and would turning everything off at night taking a reading of it and seeing how much it jumps over a period of 8 hours? Would that be enough to give to Contact and say "hey we have a faulty meter here the last couple of months are wrong"?





You can also follow me on twitter here @kiwifortw I do twitch streams every now and then at twitch.tv/kiwiforthewin :)

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  # 1357107 2-Aug-2015 13:18
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Start with some obvious things, like the hot water.

There could be a thermostat stuck on heating the water to the point where it's overflowing out of the cylinder, the mixer valve could also be faulty causing too much cold water in to the cylinder.

Have you recently got a smart or advanced meter installed, it's not uncommon for the multiplier to get set wrong and you end up with a power bill way expensive.

Failing that, start isolating circuits and taking readings every hour to see which circuit is causing the excess power usage.

Another option, is to get an electrician to install a "check meter" that way you can compare results between the 2.

Lots of things to try, if you think that the problem is the meter you either have to have some evidence to prove it so to the power company (by using a check meter, which you will have to pay to get it installed) or the power company may come and check it, but send you the bill if it's found to be ok.

Repost here when you figure out what the problem is.



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  # 1357108 2-Aug-2015 13:19
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It's passingly unlikely that your meter is faulty.  I'd be looking at a fault with the fridge/freezer or something along those lines.

 
 
 
 




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  # 1357110 2-Aug-2015 13:22
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gregmcc: Start with some obvious things, like the hot water.

There could be a thermostat stuck on heating the water to the point where it's overflowing out of the cylinder, the mixer valve could also be faulty causing too much cold water in to the cylinder.

Have you recently got a smart or advanced meter installed, it's not uncommon for the multiplier to get set wrong and you end up with a power bill way expensive.

Failing that, start isolating circuits and taking readings every hour to see which circuit is causing the excess power usage.

Another option, is to get an electrician to install a "check meter" that way you can compare results between the 2.

Lots of things to try, if you think that the problem is the meter you either have to have some evidence to prove it so to the power company (by using a check meter, which you will have to pay to get it installed) or the power company may come and check it, but send you the bill if it's found to be ok.

Repost here when you figure out what the problem is.




Yeah should add in that we don't use a hotwater we're on Gas and that's separate from our bill wink and no the meter has been there since 2010 we believe.

See the thing is I don't get how the heck we can jump from 312KwH to 1,284 in a month. That doesn't make a lot of sense to me and nothing has changed(since it's only me and my partner in the house majority of the time anyway).

I shall see if I can get an electrician in at some point if I think it's faulty. The meter runs every hour on the hour so I'll check in a bit. We certainly aren't using AC either.

ubergeeknz: It's passingly unlikely that your meter is faulty.  I'd be looking at a fault with the fridge/freezer or something along those lines.


 

Seals are good on it. Brand new when we bought it months ago.





You can also follow me on twitter here @kiwifortw I do twitch streams every now and then at twitch.tv/kiwiforthewin :)

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  # 1357113 2-Aug-2015 13:27
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ubergeeknz: It's passingly unlikely that your meter is faulty.  I'd be looking at a fault with the fridge/freezer or something along those lines.


Seals are good on it. Brand new when we bought it months ago.


I was thinking more along the lines of a bad starting cap on the compressor.  Go see how fast the meter is spinning, then unplug it and see if it changes much.  Do the same for any other appliances if that's not it... if it's a smart meter, push the gray button until you get the live usage readout (in kW)

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  # 1357132 2-Aug-2015 14:03
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I'd call the power company and ask them to check the meter. If it's faulty, which is unlikely, they'll charge you.

Turn EVERYTHING off, including fridge/freezer and see if the dial moves. If so it could be that you're paying for your neighbour's heating.

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  # 1357135 2-Aug-2015 14:08
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kiwikiwi: The house layout is split into two. We have the bigger end and our next door neighbor has the smaller front end. I've already inspected the meters that we use and only 1 of them is active which is the 24 hour one or as our power company says "Anytime"


Are the neighbour's meter (s) in the same place, are they still registering? I have seen a two flat house where flat 2 was getting it's power from an illegal connection to the stove circuit for flat 1. I'd put switching the mains for your place off and seeing if the neighbour's lights go out into the checklist.



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Ultimate Geek


  # 1357165 2-Aug-2015 15:58
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timmmay: I'd call the power company and ask them to check the meter. If it's faulty, which is unlikely, they'll charge you.

Turn EVERYTHING off, including fridge/freezer and see if the dial moves. If so it could be that you're paying for your neighbour's heating.


Something I hope I'm not but tonight should be clear if we are or not.

ubergeeknz:
ubergeeknz: It's passingly unlikely that your meter is faulty.  I'd be looking at a fault with the fridge/freezer or something along those lines.


Seals are good on it. Brand new when we bought it months ago.


I was thinking more along the lines of a bad starting cap on the compressor.  Go see how fast the meter is spinning, then unplug it and see if it changes much.  Do the same for any other appliances if that's not it... if it's a smart meter, push the gray button until you get the live usage readout (in kW)


Can't it's digital and it's only showing how many units it's clocked.

Bung:
kiwikiwi: The house layout is split into two. We have the bigger end and our next door neighbor has the smaller front end. I've already inspected the meters that we use and only 1 of them is active which is the 24 hour one or as our power company says "Anytime"


Are the neighbour's meter (s) in the same place, are they still registering? I have seen a two flat house where flat 2 was getting it's power from an illegal connection to the stove circuit for flat 1. I'd put switching the mains for your place off and seeing if the neighbour's lights go out into the checklist.

Nah since they separated and made it into 2 flats they put in separate meters.





You can also follow me on twitter here @kiwifortw I do twitch streams every now and then at twitch.tv/kiwiforthewin :)

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  # 1357180 2-Aug-2015 16:51
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Get a sparky round, be sure to ask for one that has a clamp meter , or metering equipment. 
Most decent sparkies will have a clamp meter,
They can then clamp your mains and advise you of the current draw.
You can then run round and switch things on and off to see where the consumption is. 

Pretty sure the new meters have a flashing led , I am unsure what each flash relates to in kw or part thereof.

Do you by any chance have those halogen downlights, I have a m8 with them he has 2kw of draw when all the lights are on (big house)

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  # 1357181 2-Aug-2015 16:55
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kiwikiwi:
timmmay: I'd call the power company and ask them to check the meter. If it's faulty, which is unlikely, they'll charge you.

Turn EVERYTHING off, including fridge/freezer and see if the dial moves. If so it could be that you're paying for your neighbour's heating.


Something I hope I'm not but tonight should be clear if we are or not.

ubergeeknz:
ubergeeknz: It's passingly unlikely that your meter is faulty.  I'd be looking at a fault with the fridge/freezer or something along those lines.


Seals are good on it. Brand new when we bought it months ago.


I was thinking more along the lines of a bad starting cap on the compressor.  Go see how fast the meter is spinning, then unplug it and see if it changes much.  Do the same for any other appliances if that's not it... if it's a smart meter, push the gray button until you get the live usage readout (in kW)


Can't it's digital and it's only showing how many units it's clocked.

Bung:
kiwikiwi: The house layout is split into two. We have the bigger end and our next door neighbor has the smaller front end. I've already inspected the meters that we use and only 1 of them is active which is the 24 hour one or as our power company says "Anytime"


Are the neighbour's meter (s) in the same place, are they still registering? I have seen a two flat house where flat 2 was getting it's power from an illegal connection to the stove circuit for flat 1. I'd put switching the mains for your place off and seeing if the neighbour's lights go out into the checklist.

Nah since they separated and made it into 2 flats they put in separate meters.


Maybe yours is the main meter that measures both flats, and the other meter just measures their one. Was yours the original meter? Power problems do occur, fair go has had numerous ones over the years. Have you thought about turning absolutely everything off, for a while just to see if you stop consuming power?



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Ultimate Geek


  # 1357184 2-Aug-2015 17:02
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JeremyNzl: Get a sparky round, be sure to ask for one that has a clamp meter , or metering equipment. 
Most decent sparkies will have a clamp meter,
They can then clamp your mains and advise you of the current draw.
You can then run round and switch things on and off to see where the consumption is. 

Pretty sure the new meters have a flashing led , I am unsure what each flash relates to in kw or part thereof.

Do you by any chance have those halogen downlights, I have a m8 with them he has 2kw of draw when all the lights are on (big house)


We do have CFL tube lighting but they aren't on for the most part not too sure on how much they drain.
mattwnz:
kiwikiwi:
timmmay: I'd call the power company and ask them to check the meter. If it's faulty, which is unlikely, they'll charge you.

Turn EVERYTHING off, including fridge/freezer and see if the dial moves. If so it could be that you're paying for your neighbour's heating.


Something I hope I'm not but tonight should be clear if we are or not.

ubergeeknz:
ubergeeknz: It's passingly unlikely that your meter is faulty.  I'd be looking at a fault with the fridge/freezer or something along those lines.


Seals are good on it. Brand new when we bought it months ago.


I was thinking more along the lines of a bad starting cap on the compressor.  Go see how fast the meter is spinning, then unplug it and see if it changes much.  Do the same for any other appliances if that's not it... if it's a smart meter, push the gray button until you get the live usage readout (in kW)


Can't it's digital and it's only showing how many units it's clocked.

Bung:
kiwikiwi: The house layout is split into two. We have the bigger end and our next door neighbor has the smaller front end. I've already inspected the meters that we use and only 1 of them is active which is the 24 hour one or as our power company says "Anytime"


Are the neighbour's meter (s) in the same place, are they still registering? I have seen a two flat house where flat 2 was getting it's power from an illegal connection to the stove circuit for flat 1. I'd put switching the mains for your place off and seeing if the neighbour's lights go out into the checklist.

Nah since they separated and made it into 2 flats they put in separate meters.


Maybe yours is the main meter that measures both flats, and the other meter just measures their one. Was yours the original meter? Power problems do occur, fair go has had numerous ones over the years. Have you thought about turning absolutely everything off, for a while just to see if you stop consuming power?


That's the plan tonight. Everything goes off. Check on it on the morning





You can also follow me on twitter here @kiwifortw I do twitch streams every now and then at twitch.tv/kiwiforthewin :)

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  # 1357189 2-Aug-2015 17:15
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kiwikiwi:
Bung:
kiwikiwi: The house layout is split into two. We have the bigger end and our next door neighbor has the smaller front end. I've already inspected the meters that we use and only 1 of them is active which is the 24 hour one or as our power company says "Anytime"


Are the neighbour's meter (s) in the same place, are they still registering? I have seen a two flat house where flat 2 was getting it's power from an illegal connection to the stove circuit for flat 1. I'd put switching the mains for your place off and seeing if the neighbour's lights go out into the checklist.

Nah since they separated and made it into 2 flats they put in separate meters.


Separate meters would be expected, my point was if the other meters are in the same place are they still registering the neighbour's consumption. In my example flat 1 noticed that flat 2 was still using power while there was a tag on their (flat 2) meter saying disconnected for non payment.



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  # 1357194 2-Aug-2015 17:31
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Bung:
kiwikiwi:
Bung:
kiwikiwi: The house layout is split into two. We have the bigger end and our next door neighbor has the smaller front end. I've already inspected the meters that we use and only 1 of them is active which is the 24 hour one or as our power company says "Anytime"


Are the neighbour's meter (s) in the same place, are they still registering? I have seen a two flat house where flat 2 was getting it's power from an illegal connection to the stove circuit for flat 1. I'd put switching the mains for your place off and seeing if the neighbour's lights go out into the checklist.

Nah since they separated and made it into 2 flats they put in separate meters.


Separate meters would be expected, my point was if the other meters are in the same place are they still registering the neighbour's consumption. In my example flat 1 noticed that flat 2 was still using power while there was a tag on their (flat 2) meter saying disconnected for non payment.


Ah no we have 3 meters then. One is a control which isn't ticking and one is the 24 hour/Anytime one. The only meter the neighbor has is a Vector branded one quite new too.





You can also follow me on twitter here @kiwifortw I do twitch streams every now and then at twitch.tv/kiwiforthewin :)

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Master Geek


  # 1357647 3-Aug-2015 11:20
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According to the online report from our power company smart meter doo-hickey on the 17th July we used 38.196 kWh

Thankfully, we don't normally use that much.

I am not an electrician :)

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  # 1357660 3-Aug-2015 11:37
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Is your neighbor growing Dope? Have they somehow connected something to your power?

There could be all sorts going on - you need to get an Electrician in, no way you should have a $1700 power bill.

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  # 1357694 3-Aug-2015 12:02
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Swanny: ... smart meter doo-hickey on the 17th July we used 38.196 kWh ...


Is the report quoting the same serial number as is actually on your physical meter?

We had a situation where a family member was paying the bill for someone else's account (after moving) because a manual data entry process had apparently had two forms where the data entry operator had read/copied details from the top of one customer's form to another!

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