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    Exceptionally High Gas Bill! Help!

    We moved into our new house on 20th November and took a meter reading on 28th November and another on 23rd December - and it's come to £124 - for less than one month!

    We previously had a 3 bed terrace house and now have a 4 bed detached, however, we only have one extra radiator. Admittedly, we have had the heating on more than before but surely not enough for it to come to that! What can we do because we can't afford this sort of bill each month and goodness knows what the electric bill will be like!

    We don't even cook with gas now, it's only an electric hob! We keep the thermostat on 20 degrees (or lower). My combined gas and electric bill previously were £55 a month and I expected to double my bills, but not for it to go up by this much!

    38 Comments

    The Gas/Electric companies have hoiked up the payments "to cover what they expect you to use in the winter months". Having said that, we've got about £200 credit and they've just put our direct debit up again since November - it's unfortunately the way they operate now. If you don't have a credit to start with, it's like they need some insurance that your bill will be paid. :x
    The only thing to look out for is the April quarter - make sure you give them monthly readings and tell them you want to lower the d.d as you won't need as much fuel in the springtime.:thumbsup:

    Original Poster

    This was from our meter reading, so it's not like it was even an estimate!

    I would be calling them with another meter reading and asking how they have come up with that figure...make sure your not paying stuff that was owed before you moved in etc

    I hope of course that this is a mistake and that you are entitled to money back, but

    My Gas bill for last winter was over £300 for one quarter. When I compared this to the previous winter it had increased - but in line with the costs, I had actually used a similar amount of fuel. I wouldn't be surprised if your Gas bill was that price!

    I live in a 3 bed semi.

    Good luck

    double check they havnt been crafty and put you on duel fuel as well
    I pay £100 a month for duel fuel in a 3 bed house

    Original Poster

    Butterflies;3960074

    I hope of course that this is a mistake and that you are entitled to … I hope of course that this is a mistake and that you are entitled to money back, but My Gas bill for last winter was over £300 for one quarter. When I compared this to the previous winter it had increased - but in line with the costs, I had actually used a similar amount of fuel. I wouldn't be surprised if your Gas bill was that price!I live in a 3 bed semi.Good luck



    Scary! I will keep monitoring it closely. We have thick curtains and stuff but no radiator thermostats, could that affect our heating bill so much?

    Banned

    sounds like youve got your immersion heater on 24/7 to me

    happened to me once before now its only ever on when i need hot water

    we have a 4 bed detached and never limit usage-gas approx £70 monthly-just for water and heating.

    casparwhite;3960131

    sounds like youve got your immersion heater on 24/7 to me happened to me … sounds like youve got your immersion heater on 24/7 to me happened to me once before now its only ever on when i need hot water



    its gas:?

    louloo;3960157

    we have a 4 bed detached and never limit usage-gas approx £70 … we have a 4 bed detached and never limit usage-gas approx £70 monthly-just for water and heating.



    Is your house quite new?

    Just wondering, ours is a bit old, could probably do with better insulation, and the double glazing isn't fabulous!

    There's so many factors that could drive up your fuei bills.

    OP what is your house like - old or new - could it do with some home improvements that might lower your bills?

    Butterflies;3960226

    Is your house quite new?Just wondering, ours is a bit old, could probably … Is your house quite new?Just wondering, ours is a bit old, could probably do with better insulation, and the double glazing isn't fabulous!There's so many factors that could drive up your fuei bills. OP what is your house like - old or new - could it do with some home improvements that might lower your bills?



    its 20years old and we have a few failed windows need repair...we have thermostats on most radiators but i dont think it really matters as the usage is similar to before we had fitted.

    franbo60;3959965

    The Gas/Electric companies have hoiked up the payments "to cover what … The Gas/Electric companies have hoiked up the payments "to cover what they expect you to use in the winter months". Having said that, we've got about £200 credit and they've just put our direct debit up again since November - it's unfortunately the way they operate now. If you don't have a credit to start with, it's like they need some insurance that your bill will be paid. :xThe only thing to look out for is the April quarter - make sure you give them monthly readings and tell them you want to lower the d.d as you won't need as much fuel in the springtime.:thumbsup:



    Just a note/tip, if you're in credit and you think they've raised your d.d. too much give them a call and tell them that... there's a good chance they'll bring the d.d. down a bit. They did with me.

    Original Poster

    Thought immersion was electric?

    I am waiting for a potential price decrease in the fuel bills, then will change companies

    Money saving expert reckoned in November that there might be a decrease in January. Obviously doesn't help you right now - but it's nice to have something to look forward to. (How sad am I)

    moneysavingexpert.com/uti…ity

    Original Poster

    Butterflies;3960226

    Is your house quite new?OP what is your house like - old or new - could … Is your house quite new?OP what is your house like - old or new - could it do with some home improvements that might lower your bills?



    The house is about 20 years old also. When we first moved in we were freezing although the house had been standing empty. It has laminate floors downstairs and the living/dining room went straight through to the conservatory but we have now put a thick curtain between the conservatory/dining room which has helped an awful lot. We are just waiting for a new gas fire to be installed at which point we've ordered carpets which should also help a lot.

    I agree carpets will help tons.

    Our floor is also laminate and it's COLD!

    Also our kitchen has no door on it - so the air ventilation lets in cold air from outside - and this feeds into the house making a draft.

    We could solve this by putting on a kitchen door (and keeping it closed) - but that would shrink our kitchen to almost unusable size when it was open.

    Just another reason why our house is cold!

    The carpet is agreat idea - so is the heavy curtain.

    oh we have carpet! would have loved wood but i know how much colder the playroom was before the large rug!

    chocolate_lover;3960275

    Just a note/tip, if you're in credit and you think they've raised your … Just a note/tip, if you're in credit and you think they've raised your d.d. too much give them a call and tell them that... there's a good chance they'll bring the d.d. down a bit. They did with me.



    I called them today as soon as I heard they'd raised it by £25. They've agreed to reduce it by £5 on the understanding I'm going to have it reduced come April otherwise I'll go elsewhere and have my £100's credit in the form of a nice cheque!:thumbsup:

    Banned

    louloo;3960165

    its gas:?



    oopsss my mistake :oops:

    you should be able to work it out yourself tho by working out how many units of gas you have used and multiplying by your rate to make sure its correct

    also check your old bills from your previous address to compare how many units you were using before

    quite a few of the companys offer cashback via quidco for changing....do it a few times and it makes a difference :-D

    December was very cold, the bill is not going to be this high every month. Was your prevoius bill of £55 for the month of December or was that the average over a 12 month period?

    Just paid my gas bill for the last quarter and it has been read on the last three bills... £58.00
    Heating goes on when we need it (combi boiler) but will put it on when the house temperature drops to about 15 and turn it off when it reaches 17 or 17.5
    We cook gas and hot water by gas with the shower going every morning. So not too uncomfortable for us to live in.

    The lecky is another story and I have just told them to stuff their last bill. Billed me for 119 days instead of 90 so I have pro rated the bill and told them that's all they are getting..... there is a credit crunch going on and the utility companies are not getting fat at my expense.

    We pay £120pm by direct debit for gas and electric,,,Its a 3bed detached we live in,,,

    Butterflies;3960074

    I hope of course that this is a mistake and that you are entitled to … I hope of course that this is a mistake and that you are entitled to money back, but My Gas bill for last winter was over £300 for one quarter. When I compared this to the previous winter it had increased - but in line with the costs, I had actually used a similar amount of fuel. I wouldn't be surprised if your Gas bill was that price!I live in a 3 bed semi.Good luck



    Aye we can hit over 300 a quarter at winter too. :thumbsup:

    Original Poster

    Scary stuff. I'm hoping from now on it will get a little better, now we have thick curtains and are back at work, etc.

    One other strange thing though is that even though we don't turn on the hot water (we have the controls in the airing cupboard), the water is quite warm and yet the immersion isn't on? Why would this happen do you think?

    One other thing that might be worth a mention is do you have cavity insulation in the walls and in the attic?, 10 inches of insulation is the recommend these days, if you haven't you might be able to get a grant to help with the cost :thumbsup:

    Original Poster

    The plot thickens, turns out I swapped over to Eon on moving (which I knew about) but NPower have only got me down for Gas, so basically I'm swapping them over individually, so one does gas and the other electric and it's NPower's fault. I told them I didn't want either service with them and they said I had to have Electric with them as I was outside of the 14 day contract. I said I hadn't had a contract nor had I received anything in writing!

    fruityloops;3968721

    The plot thickens, turns out I swapped over to Eon on moving (which I … The plot thickens, turns out I swapped over to Eon on moving (which I knew about) but NPower have only got me down for Gas, so basically I'm swapping them over individually, so one does gas and the other electric and it's NPower's fault. I told them I didn't want either service with them and they said I had to have Electric with them as I was outside of the 14 day contract. I said I hadn't had a contract nor had I received anything in writing!



    yup..good old npower again.

    I have hopefully left them now and im trying my luck with SP..have had such **** from npower and BG

    Banned

    checked mine yesterday and monthly gas comsumption was £71 and electric was £35 (4 bed detached - south coast of England).

    £124 sounds a lot.

    Did you take accurate reading when you moved in?

    How many units have you used since and what are your unit prices? Mine are as follows:-

    Click Energy 6 Gas
    Meter Type: Credit
    Payment Method: Monthly Direct Debit
    Tier 1 Tier 2 (Tier 1 is the first 670kwh per qtr)
    6.807 6.432
    per kWh per kWh

    (inc.VAT)

    Banned

    casparwhite;3960704

    oopsss my mistake :oops:you should be able to work it out yourself tho by … oopsss my mistake :oops:you should be able to work it out yourself tho by working out how many units of gas you have used and multiplying by your rate to make sure its correct



    that doesn't work either, you have to do

    gas units used x imperial to metric conversion factor (2.83) x volume conversion factor (1.022640) x calorific value (39.7) divided by kilowatt hour conversion factor (3.6) = kilowatt hours used. Then x that by the rate per kw. If you have a metric meter then you miss out the x 2.83 bit but still have to do the rest.

    OP you may be on a new metric meter and they might be charging you for the old style. Check the meter serial no is the same as on the bill.

    Banned

    colinsunderland;3976701

    that doesn't work either, you have to dogas units used x imperial to … that doesn't work either, you have to dogas units used x imperial to metric conversion factor (2.83) x volume conversion factor (1.022640) x calorific value (39.7) divided by kilowatt hour conversion factor (3.6) = kilowatt hours used. Then x that by the rate per kw. If you have a metric meter then you miss out the x 2.83 bit but still have to do the rest.OP you may be on a new metric meter and they might be charging you for the old style. Check the meter serial no is the same as on the bill.


    or create a spreadsheet and take a note of readings each month

    formula

    =SUM(Currentreading-prevreading)*1.02264*39.3048/3.6

    fruityloops;3960332

    Thought immersion was electric?




    I had gas heating with an immersion too, it was explained to me that i could heat my water with the gas or i had another switch which would heat the water using my electric (immersion), it was possible to have both on together (by mistake). This is how it was explained to me so could be wrong

    Banned

    *scooby*;3996786

    I had gas heating with an immersion too, it was explained to me that i … I had gas heating with an immersion too, it was explained to me that i could heat my water with the gas or i had another switch which would heat the water using my electric (immersion), it was possible to have both on together (by mistake). This is how it was explained to me so could be wrong


    the immersion is electric only (its an immersed element like a kettle). It wouldnt run off gas.

    colinsunderland;3976701

    that doesn't work either, you have to dogas units used x imperial to … that doesn't work either, you have to dogas units used x imperial to metric conversion factor (2.83) x volume conversion factor (1.022640) x calorific value (39.7) divided by kilowatt hour conversion factor (3.6) = kilowatt hours used. Then x that by the rate per kw. If you have a metric meter then you miss out the x 2.83 bit but still have to do the rest.OP you may be on a new metric meter and they might be charging you for the old style. Check the meter serial no is the same as on the bill.



    There was an article on Watchdog about exactly that tonight :

    If you're worried, you should all checkout the last 10 mins of this evenings Watchdog (12th Jan) on bbc iplayer. A lot of people are getting incorrect meter readings by British Gas and other providers which are almost trebling their bills. Scary stuff

    bbc.co.uk/ipl…09/

    Original Poster

    tallpete33;4045986

    There was an article on Watchdog about exactly that tonight :If you're … There was an article on Watchdog about exactly that tonight :If you're worried, you should all checkout the last 10 mins of this evenings Watchdog (12th Jan) on bbc iplayer. A lot of people are getting incorrect meter readings by British Gas and other providers which are almost trebling their bills. Scary stuff http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode...og_12_01_2009/



    Just watched it, thanks for that. Will wait until the morning to check our meter but I hate the way these things aren't straight-forward.

    Yes make sure you check your metre,our gas bill just came and mother
    nearly had a heart attack lol.Over £500 due to miss reading the metre.
    After informing them of the correct reading its now £228 not far out was he.

    *scooby*;3996786

    I had gas heating with an immersion too, it was explained to me that i … I had gas heating with an immersion too, it was explained to me that i could heat my water with the gas or i had another switch which would heat the water using my electric (immersion), it was possible to have both on together (by mistake). This is how it was explained to me so could be wrong





    An immersion is electric. Where ther are installed in a tank that also is fed via a gas boiler they are for back up.

    In my view dont use it unless the boiler breaks down as it is expenisve to run, much cheaper to heat the water with the gas boiler. Also the it tank recovers quicker from cold with the gas system

    alert;4097479

    An immersion is electric. Where ther are installed in a tank that also is … An immersion is electric. Where ther are installed in a tank that also is fed via a gas boiler they are for back up. In my view dont use it unless the boiler breaks down as it is expenisve to run, much cheaper to heat the water with the gas boiler. Also the it tank recovers quicker from cold with the gas system


    agree :thumbsup:

    gas will be much cheaper than using an electric immersion
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