What is an average electricity charge for a French house

Sounds as if our set up is very similar to yours, except we heat our hot water for the house by an electric tank, and have an electric hob. Our EDF direct debit is €101 per month - big difference! Think you need to check yours out.

Hi, We’ve just finished refurbishing our place in France and although we had some high electricity bills, I put this down to the amount of electrical equipment in use on the refurb. Now things have settled down and we visit three or four times a year for one or two weeks each time I expected a significant reduction in our bills. But no, we seem to be paying about £900 p.a. for our six week at the house. We’re all electric but turn everything off except the fridge when we leave. Does this sound in line with anyone else?

Are your visits in summer or in winter, do you have the heating on? Do you have a pool?

According to EDF a good ballpark figure is 10€ / square metre / annum - for electricity consumption (i.e. not including any standing charges)

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Any electrician will be able to checkout your equipment, to ensure there is nothing “odd” going on.

But you yourself can check your Meter:
Switch OFF at the meter… take a reading… leave it off for a few hours, then have another look. If the reading is exactly the same, then the Meter is OK. If the Meter reading has changed… then the Meter is faulty.

This advice was given to me recently by the Helpline…(who also asked if the fridge and/or water heater was aged…as this can be a source of high bills…so they say).

Just wondering… why would you leave a fridge running . ?? Surely it would be safer to switch the electrics off when the house is unoccupied for most of the year.

Assuming you have a modern meter with an LCD display and a flashing LED which shows how much power you are using (1 flash = 1 watt hour) then you can do a crude test as follows.

Turn everything off at the tableau except one lighting circuit and on that circuit make sure a single 100W bulb is turned on. Now look at the meter - if the LED flashes once every 36 seconds the meter is OK. It’s a crude test as the power the bulb takes will depend on manufacturing variations and also on the voltage present at your property. A 60W bulb will make the LED flash once a minute.

A more accurate way of doing it is to get one of these https://www.amazon.fr/consommation-dénergie-mètre-wattmètre-compteur/dp/B00E5BONDU/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1487280612&sr=8-5&keywords=metre+puissance (or similar, this is just the 1st I found on Amazon, not a specific product recommendation) and compare the reading on it with the main electricity meter - again you would have to make sure everything is turned off except one load plugged into the power meter. you can then check your LED is flashing at the right rate (60W - once per minute, 120W once every 30secs, 180W once every 20 secs and so on - the load in watts is how many times the LED should flash per hour).

As to 900€ for a year that does seem high - if you are on a 12kW supply on tariff bleu then that is almost 5000kWh a year, even a large 'fridge should be less than 1/10 that amount. It is roughly equivalent to a continuous load of 500W.

Are you sure that you are turning everything off?

Have you taken readings at the beginning and end of your stay and worked out how much you have used while there? Readings when you are away would be useful as well. Have you looked in detail at the bill?

Crikey I’d rather stick pins in my eyes! :slight_smile: As I said earlier, EDF give a ball park guide of 10€ / sqaure metre / annum for consumption only.

And standing charges and all the various taxes can ( almost) double the bill

Sorry Simon, rather stick pins in your eyes than make sure you are not wasting a couple of hundred euros a year on electricity. Well, each to their own, I suppose :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

10€/m² is probably about right for an electrically heated house in year-round occupation, 900€ for a house occupied only 6 weeks a year seems steep.

I suspect that Jim has something left on that he hasn’t thought about - maybe the water heater. Or he has an absolutely huge place with a 36kW supply (currently 723.39€ per year standing charge on tariff bleu or 761.37€ on heures creuses). As yet we have no idea because he hasn’t said if he’s done anything to look at why he’s paying that much. It’s not terribly likely that the meter is faulty though.

For reference our 2016 bill was about €570 for a 12kVA supply in a 150m² property. Heating which is an air source heat pump is left on standby/“frost protect” (which didn’t :frowning: ) and I leave the ventilation fans on to stop the place getting too damp, that give me a base of about 2½kWh per day when we are not there (which is similar to Jim’s at 6-7 weeks but mostly shorter visits, including the winter).

Have you checked on your statement to see if your meter reading was estimated. It could be that your supplier is simply extrapolating your last meter reading in which case the overestimate will be eventually be refunded when your meter is actually read.

Hi Paul…

The EDF Helpline advised checking the meter as a first step…before they would consider sending anyone out…since the “excessive” usage was highlighted after major renovations/refurbishments (including new meter)… possibly a similar situation to Jim’s by the sound of it.

Something the customer can do, so easily, which costs nothing and is another box-ticked in the process of solving the query…