Yesterday my wifed received a telephone call advising us that our electricity consumption had gone up FOUR-FOLD over the past 12 months, and that our monthly payment to EDF would now rise to €220 a month from the now €70 we pay.
Needless to say we were shocked, but we did the sensible thing and asked for a name and reply telephone number whilst we checked our own meter. This was provided. In the interim we spoke to a neighbour who warned us of a telephone 'sting' where this was happening a lot, and of which we had never heard. However no attempt had been made to sell us anything and we checked the EDF telephone number and rang back. Their first reaction was to warn us against this sting - so it is widely spread. Unfortunately this did not apply to us as their checks revealed the same information and the person was one of their staff, so it was true.
How is it possible for an electricity consumption to increase four-fold in a year when you have done nothing different in that time? We have not added any structures, and the only thing that changed about a year ago was the fitting of a new control box by an EDF contractor. We have asked that this be checked which can be done 'at our expense' which seems a bit unreasonable. We have also been advised to check ALL units in the house to see if there is an anomaly anywhere.
As we are NOT electricians, and apart from noting on most appliances a Kw rating (per hour?) we haven't got a clue. So we have asked a friendly electrician to call and check things for us - chargeable of course.
Two things seem to appear, and I wonder if anyone can give me a Kw rating on a laptop computer? The back of the machine is loaded with all sorts of labels, but not one that I can see that provides this information. I spend both my working life (yes I am still trying to work at least!) and social life on the computer so I readily admit to being on for many hours in a day. However this has not changed in five years, and I can't really see how possibly a bit of extra time of say 4 hours a day would have made such a difference - or could it?
If it IS the computer then it will be like 'end of days' for me, as that is where my whole life just about functions - whch may sound a bit sad but really isn't as I enjoy what I do, and as think is the case for others much as I deplore computer usage (in others of course) it is my window to the world.
We have the pompe a chaleur heating, and apart from my excessive use of the computer just the usual things like induction cooker, freezer, and oven. The induction had been problematical but is now fixed, could that have had an effect? We did use oil-bath heaters for a few days in the cold snap when the pump couldn't cope, but again could that have made such a massive difference?
Incidentally and oddly we were told we had peaks in January, probably understandably, and then in March? As the reading was only done in mid-March how could that be a massive peak?
Any thoughts appreciated, but notably the Kwh factor on a laptop.