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Thread: Abnormal high bill

  1. #1
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    Abnormal high bill

    I have a customer who is complaining of an abnormally High electric bill is there any type of issues that would cause this or could it only be caused by high usage

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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by nickelec View Post
    I have a customer who is complaining of an abnormally High electric bill is there any type of issues that would cause this or could it only be caused by high usage
    Presuming the meter is reading correctly, high usage or an increase in cost per kWh, but that could be caused by one of several electrical issues.

    It takes more than one billing cycle to determine there is a trend. Do you know whether the power usage increased, or only the dollar amount?
    Code references based on 2005 NEC
    Larry B. Fine
    Master Electrician
    Electrical Contractor
    Richmond, VA

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    There are some faults which can unintentionally cause high energy usage.

    For example I have heard of water heater faults causing additional consumption, or a hot water leak causing excessive water heater usage (assuming electric water heat, of course).

    Faults in heat pumps causing air conditioning and resistance heating to be on at the same time would be another example.

    But new loads can consume far more energy than expected, even when functioning perfectly normally. Put in a new dehumidifier and prepare for a surprise....

    -Jon

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    Another source of abnormal bills is misreading or not reading the meter. It can even happen w/ smart meters, where there is a failure to communicate and the POCO just guesses.

    Over the years I have had both happen.

  5. #5
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    I have found issues where a direct bury electrical line was damaged and the power was just dumping to the actual ground.

    One customer had a trailer and between the pedestal and the trailer was direct bury USE wire. An animal chewed through one of the lines, and the power bill went from 200 ish a month to 8500 a month.


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    Is the bill high because of a jump in Kwh usage? Or is the dollar amount just high?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by blkmagik21 View Post
    I have found issues where a direct bury electrical line was damaged and the power was just dumping to the actual ground.

    One customer had a trailer and between the pedestal and the trailer was direct bury USE wire. An animal chewed through one of the lines, and the power bill went from 200 ish a month to 8500 a month.


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    $s or KW?

    We do a lot of repairs and nothing has even come close to either amount. Always burn off or blow transformer fuses. Wow.
    Tom
    TBLO

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    My first suspect would be the water heater as mentioned. Either the unit itself or a leak causing high use.
    Cheers and Stay Safe,

    Marky the Sparky

  9. #9
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    well pump short cycling

    AC condenser frozen

    broken ductwork

    any kind of water leak if on a well

    I had one that was easy to find, locked down motor (don't remember but I think was AC) repeatedly trying to start, kick out thermal overload, after overload cooled off tried to start again
    Dave Ruth
    Ready Electric

  10. #10
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    I"ve heard that leaky refrigerator gasket can make high power bill but never have seen
    Dave Ruth
    Ready Electric

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