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185 posts

Master Geek


  # 1809463 30-Jun-2017 10:55
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jonathan18:

 

timmmay:

 

When I sent them a flick bill here was their (quite reasonable) reply.

 

--

 

We only guarantee savings based on a plan which has comparable conditions to Electric Kiwi. This means we don’t calculate savings based on plans with special conditions, such as dual fuel and/or bundled discounts.

 

Flick customers pay a varying rate for electricity which cannot be determined in advance. Some weeks their bills will be higher than others even if the amount of electricity used is the same. This means we can’t do a direct comparison with our simple, single rate plans where you’re never surprised by your bill!

 

Don’t worry we’ll still guarantee your savings! We’ll simply use recent prices from the biggest power company in your area to track your savings.

 

 

Thanks, Tim - yeah, that's an understandable position.

 

 

 

My change-over to EK finally came through on Wednesday afternoon. In terms of the free hour of power - I understand the ability to change for a particular day up until midnight that night, but it can still be a bit of guess work as to which is the most advantageous hour to select given the delay in being able to view the data. I'm assuming, based on Flick data, that the first hour of running our heatpump in the morning will draw the biggest load so I will default it to this period.

 

 

 

 

 

 

After seeing your power usage pattern after a few days or weeks you can find the best default off peak hour & then see what other power consumption can easily be moved to that time slot to optimise savings. This might be nearly as effective as trying to change your free off peak on a daiuly basis to match that days power usage. Sometimes the simplest option is the best option. 


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  # 1809471 30-Jun-2017 11:11
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clive100:

 

After seeing your power usage pattern after a few days or weeks you can find the best default off peak hour & then see what other power consumption can easily be moved to that time slot to optimise savings. This might be nearly as effective as trying to change your free off peak on a daiuly basis to match that days power usage. Sometimes the simplest option is the best option. 

 

 

Given we have Infinity gas hot water there's little else meaningful we can shift. The main saving re dishwasher and washing machine will come through heating the water (as opposed to the power used in running them), so don't offer much reduction for gas users.

 

Actually, thinking more widely, given our heat pump is struggling with heating on cold mornings, I could also set a standard heater to also operate over that time. An hour of 2400w heating will help!


 
 
 
 


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  # 1809474 30-Jun-2017 11:18
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I think you're much better off actively trying to use that hour than just setting to when you use more power.

 

Our dishwasher only has a cold water connection, it heats its own water.

 

We have two heat pumps (20A), dish washer (10A but not for long, just to heat a bit of water and to dry the dishes), hot water cylinder (13A), under floor heating (1A), office heater (8A), and optionally clothes drier (10A). So we'll be doing minimum 34A for that our, plus sometimes an additional 20A. That's peaking around 54A on a 60A fuse, and we're still running regular things like fridge, low wattage oil heaters in the bedrooms, etc. Since I tripped the pole fuse on my first day with EK I'm easing it up a bit slowly.

 

I think the maximum usage is 55A * 230 / 1000 = 12.6kwh. That's about $3 worth of power if it's at 100%. We're using around 50kwh of power a day, so it could save 10 to 20% of our bill depending on how much I load it.


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  # 1809480 30-Jun-2017 11:38
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timmmay:

 

I think you're much better off actively trying to use that hour than just setting to when you use more power.

 

 

 

 

Fair enough, but my point is the amount of usage one can shift may vary greatly depending on circumstances and specific appliances. For example, our dishwasher uses gas-heated hot water so little to gain there, for example.

 

Then there's also the issue that one may start running appliances that one would not otherwise not use, simply to make use of that free power. Our underfloor bathroom heating is a perfect example: we've not bothered using this in years, given it's so expensive to run, so if we started using it over that free hour "because we can" that's not exactly responsible energy usage!


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  # 1809487 30-Jun-2017 11:46
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jonathan18:

 

 

 

Fair enough, but my point is the amount of usage one can shift may vary greatly depending on circumstances and specific appliances. For example, our dishwasher uses gas-heated hot water so little to gain there, for example.

 

Then there's also the issue that one may start running appliances that one would not otherwise not use, simply to make use of that free power. Our underfloor bathroom heating is a perfect example: we've not bothered using this in years, given it's so expensive to run, so if we started using it over that free hour "because we can" that's not exactly responsible energy usage!

 

 

I agree about not using power needlessly. I'm not using any additional energy, I'm just time shifting. We run underfloor heating part of the day regardless of cost. We already turn on both heat pumps at the time we do now, an hour before the baby gets up, and we leave them on all day.

 

Our usage patterns are very predictable.


185 posts

Master Geek


  # 1809492 30-Jun-2017 11:54
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timmmay:

 

jonathan18:

 

 

 

Fair enough, but my point is the amount of usage one can shift may vary greatly depending on circumstances and specific appliances. For example, our dishwasher uses gas-heated hot water so little to gain there, for example.

 

Then there's also the issue that one may start running appliances that one would not otherwise not use, simply to make use of that free power. Our underfloor bathroom heating is a perfect example: we've not bothered using this in years, given it's so expensive to run, so if we started using it over that free hour "because we can" that's not exactly responsible energy usage!

 

 

I agree about not using power needlessly. I'm not using any additional energy, I'm just time shifting. We run underfloor heating part of the day regardless of cost. We already turn on both heat pumps at the time we do now, an hour before the baby gets up, and we leave them on all day.

 

Our usage patterns are very predictable.

 

 

 

 

That supports my thoughts that you just monitor your normal activity via the EK website & then pick the off peak hour that is the largest on average over a weekly cycle. Then only time shift other consumption to that hour if convenient. Yes I agree that there is no point in wasting power but if you can benefit from it it is a guilt free off peak hour supply from renewable resource surplus power. That is why it is free. 


eph

176 posts

Master Geek


  # 1809582 30-Jun-2017 13:05
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clive100: 

 

Yes I agree that there is no point in wasting power but if you can benefit from it it is a guilt free off peak hour supply from renewable resource surplus power. That is why it is free. 

 

 

Renewable resource surplus power? Is that really true? That would suggest that (renewable) supply is greater than demand. I think that would drive spot price close to zero (or into negative numbers like recently in Germany) and correct me if I'm wrong but I don't think that happens very often (if ever).

 

I don't agree wasting energy is ever good, it creates bad habits, wasting something just because you don't have to pay for it is IMHO wrong.

 

The power is not free for the retailer - usually not even for you - you or (if you are smart) somebody else is still going to pay for it in in power consumed outside the free hour otherwise the company would go bankrupt very soon. 


 
 
 
 


Baby Get Shaky!
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  # 1809590 30-Jun-2017 13:15
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ArcticSilver:

 

timmmay:

 

Interesting. It could be exactly what it said, that the load is too high to take all the Flick customers.

 

I don't think it's fair to switch to EK for a short period while spot prices are high. My plan was to switch and stay, with no plan to move back.

 

 

Personally I disagree, they advertise no contract, if its not fair why don't they put up a contract? We can't pretend to know what will cost them or what doesn't.

 

I looked at signing up, but decided against it mainly because they list their prices excluding GST deliberately to mislead (so it seems cheaper than it is). How many people missed the fine print I wonder? It also concerns me that they're potentially blocking ex Flick customers from signing up.

 

If you can't do it off contract then have a contract, but don't advertise it with no contract then only accept people when it suits. Hopefully these trends prove to be a coincidence.

 

 

 

 

I'm with you on this. I have no loyalty to Flick and will likely have none to EK either. They decided on what terms to offer their services and whether they were going to use contracts. I see nothing wrong with jumping between providers as regularly as required to get the best deal for me and my family. People do it frequently with internet providers, cell providers and even pay TV - I see no difference for electricity providers. If it's not working for them then they need to change their policies to suit. In a few months I'll crunch the numbers and move back to Flick if it makes sense. Next winter we'll do it again if need be.


185 posts

Master Geek


  # 1809598 30-Jun-2017 13:26
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The reality (as I understand it)  is that NZ currently can & often does generate power surplus to the spot demand. Of course after taking into account the additional costs of distrubution & wholesaler / retailer costs of supply means it isn't free to us as the consumer. An article link I saw somewhere here on Geekzone regarding renewable or freely sourced power generation indicated that NZ had the potential to manage the load of all vehicles currently on NZ roads if replaced with full electric versions. If I have this wrong I apologise but I received the message that the potential is there now and already sceduled to come online in the future as and when required.  The need for peak power is the problem & any load that can be deferred into off peak times stabilises or balances the generation network.    


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  # 1810105 1-Jul-2017 15:46
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I'm don't think EK is applying the "hour of power" properly on my account. I think they're out by 30 minutes. That means if I'm time shifting to get power usage in that one hour window I'm only getting a bit over half the expected benefit.

 

 

 

On the 29th my free hour of power was 5am to 6am, as shown by the first picture below. I do note that the previous day it was different, 4:30am to 5:30am, but since the 29th it's been 5 to 6am.

 

At 5am I have the following starting: two heat pumps at 25 degrees (20A total that run the whole hour), dishwasher (not a lot of power), a standard heater (10A from 5:30 - 6am), and hot water (13A but may not run for the whole hour). I know they come on then because I'm often up at that time. That's approx 7.3kwh used. At 6am the heat pumps turn down to 21 so they run occasionally not constantly, the hot water is already heated, and the electric heater turns off.

 

The EK dashboard shows I used:

 

  • 0.55kwh from 5 - 5:30am
  • 3.37kwh 5:30am to 6am
  • 2.8kwh between 6am and 6:30am

My free hour of power is showing as 3.92kwh used, whereas it should show more like 6 - 7kwh. I think it's registering power as being used 30 minutes later than it's actually used.

 

Can anyone look at the images below and let me know if you think I'm correct? Can anyone see anything similar on their own power bill?

 

 

 

This shows my selected hour of power 

 

Click to see full size

 

 

 

This shows the 5 - 5:30am power usage, which should be much higher

 

Click to see full size

 

 

 

This shows the 5:30 - 6am power usage, which is about right

 

Click to see full size


185 posts

Master Geek


  # 1810131 1-Jul-2017 16:43
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I found my graphs a little confusing at first as it's done in 1/2 KWH on the left hand scale. So actually KWH is twice that shown at any particular time.

 

If the free hour is calculated as an overall average at 3 points Ie. 5.00am . 5.30am . 6.00am then I suggest you do what i have done myself  & set the clocks on your heatpumps & HW timer 5 minutes earlier (5.55am)so the first 5.00am test point will be the higher load and if the timers turns off thoase heat pumps etc then set them to 1hr 10mins later ie 6.05am so the full load will still show it the 6.00 am test point. Then the average over those 3 test points will be much higher.  Then check it when that graph for that day appears.  


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  # 1810186 1-Jul-2017 17:40
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Mine is in 1kwh increments on the side, but I got the numbers by hovering over the graph.

 

The graph should be showing energy consumed in the previous half hour, but I can see that it's actually registering late. Because of that the hour of power savings are lower. I only have one good day of data so far, because of a power cut, but it'll add data over the next couple of days. For now I'll use power 5 - 6am but set the free hour of power 5:30 - 6:30am.

 

I'd tell EK, but the only way for customers to contact them is chat. This is too complex for chat. I'll try to find an email address I guess.

 

EK in general is difficult to communicate with.


2 posts

Wannabe Geek


  # 1810197 1-Jul-2017 17:56
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timmmay if you've only just joined and you're looking at your most recent day in the graph there's a small chance it's estimated data. 

 

Check it tomorrow or in a few days and see if your graph for the 29th looks the same.

 

I haven't had any problem with my hour of power times or even getting in touch with them.

 

Live chat works well or send a message when your logged into your account (bottom right of account page for me)


185 posts

Master Geek


  # 1810202 1-Jul-2017 18:02
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By your own calculations that should be around 7KW ? But the graph is shown as 1/2 KWH so double 3.37 KW ~7KWH.

 

But I see your point about is it shifted ? This one looks like 5.30 -6.30am

 

 

 

 


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  # 1810233 1-Jul-2017 19:13
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I'm not using the scale on the side, I'm using the hover numbers, so they don't need to be doubled.

 

My understanding is it's summed over a half hour. So power used between 5.00 and 5.30 should be logged as 5.30. It's not, it's logging it as 6.00.

 

It's not estimated data. It reflects our usage patterns too well to be estimated. I will watch it over the next couple of days of course.

 

Does anyone else have a well controlled load they can compare with the usage graph?


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