Why is my bill unexpectedly high? — Bulb Community

Why is my bill unexpectedly high?

Here are the most common reasons you might receive an unexpectedly high bill:

1) You have entered your meter readings incorrectly on your Bulb Account. If so, just let us know and we can amend your bill.

You can check your previous meter readings in the “Energy Usage” section of your Bulb Account.

2) You submitted your first meter reading for a while.

When we don’t receive your meter readings we use estimates. These are not always exact. So if your meter readings were actually a bit higher than the estimates, it might look like you consumed a lot in one month. But this is actually the result of us catching up on the usage from all the months previous to this.

3) Your meter is broken.

This is very rare. If you think your meter is running too quickly, you can do a quick test to find out. Simply turn off all appliances in your home and see if the meter is still ticking over.

If the meter stops, turn on 1 appliance at a time and check the meter. If the meter starts to move very quickly, the appliance could be faulty.

We recommend giving meter readings once a month to get the most accurate bills and to give these just before your payment is due, or once every three months at a minimum.


Still not answered your question? Post it below as you might not be the only one.

Comments

  • Simply turn off all appliances in your home and see if the meter is still ticking over.

    The easiest way to do this is to just 'throw' (turn off) all the circuit breakers in the consumer unit (there should be a main 'on/off' switch in the cabinet). Remember when you do so that ALL the power will go off - lights, freezer, fire alarms, burglar alarm systems etc (just like a power cut) - so don't do this in the dark and don't leave them off for too long: ensure that all the circuit breakers are returned 'on afterwards (sometimes turning the main 'on/off' breaker switch back to 'on' doesn't turn the individual ones back on automatically).
  • Hey Eleanor
    I think my meter has some problems,my meter reading shows that I have used 15,000KWh for the last 6 months. That is ridiculous. I share a flat with a friend, and we only use electricity for heating, hot water, lighting and just several conventional household appliances. So what should we do next? How can we request a check if the energy meter is faulty?
  • cquliuxl said:

    I share a flat with a friend, and we only use electricity for heating, hot water, lighting and just several conventional household appliances.

    That list you've given includes pretty much everything electricity could be used for, including the two biggest consumers - heating and hot water. To give an example, my gas boiler typically uses about 14000kWh of energy for heating and hot water. I also use typically 3500kWh of electrical energy. That's a total of 17500kWh per year. The value you've stated is for just 6 months, but most heating occurs in the winter months and so it's not spread evenly throughout the year.

    Your 15000kWh reading for 6 months I'd agree is a little high, but it's far from ridiculous. But to answer your question, yes you can get Bulb to install a "check meter", which is another meter alongside your existing meter. If the two match within the expected precision of the meters then there is nothing wrong and you'll be charged for the check. If your meter does show to be out of calibration, your meter will be changed for free. If you want to proceed with this, you should contact Bulb directly via the contact information in the help pages rather than via this customer forum.
  • I've just submitted my meter readings for the first time in a while, I received a statement today to say I've used £252 in energy for the past 4 weeks! I nearly fell off my chair. That's impossible since its a small house and we barely have the heating on. We have a gas hob which is use and a gas fire which is never on. I'm baffled.

    Could this be related to point 2?
  • Without me looking at whatever point 27 says I would suggest the problem is due you not submitting regular meter readings . I would guess earlier months were based on low estimated meter readings and your recent meter reading is a catch up on your energy use?
  • Point 2 is:

    2) You submitted your first meter reading for a while.

    When we don’t receive your meter readings we use estimates. These are not always exact. So if your meter readings were actually a bit higher than the estimates, it might look like you consumed a lot in one month. But this is actually the result of us catching up on the usage from all the months previous to this.

    Hopefully this will clear itself over the Summer?
  • @GameOfThrowIns

    On the basis you have just submitted a meter reading it means you have brought your billing up to date. Personally I submit monthly meter readings in the time frame contained in the monthly email reminders from Bulb, thereby my bills tend to be accurate.
  • I always aim to, but we've just had a kid, well 6 months old now (no real excuse I know) but I keep meaning to submit them but then forget.
  • edited April 6

    I always aim to, but we've just had a kid, well 6 months old now (no real excuse I know) but I keep meaning to submit them but then forget.

    You're billed monthly, whether you submit readings or not. If you don't submit readings then estimates will be used instead, and these estimates vary between correct and wildly inaccurate. In your case, it's most likely that the estimates have been low. When you submitted your readings, your usage was brought up to date. The actual usage from all of your previously low estimates, when brought up to date with correct readings, then appeared on the most recent monthly bill. That's not the same as saying you've used all that energy in one month.

    For example, if your estimated readings were ...

    100 reading
    200 estimated
    300 estimated
    400 estimated

    But your actual usage was ...

    100 reading
    300 reading
    500 reading
    700 reading

    Then your bills would have been based on ...

    100 reading
    200 estimated
    300 estimated
    700 reading

    Which makes it look like you've used 100 units of energy in the first two months and then a massive 400 units of energy in the most recent month. Clearly that's not the case, it's just that your bills have caught up with your real usage in the last month.
  • edited May 20
    Is there any wrongdoing with entering Meter readings more often than per month, maybe every two weeks.
    As a new bulb Customer I'm interested to know how my usage will settle an DD.
    My previous supplier sse discouraged multiple meter readings-though that was their i.t. System.
  • I'm wondering the same thing. Would love some answers
  • There's no harm in submitting more than one meter reading per month.

    On the one hand, there is no advantage of doing this. If you submit your meter reading a couple of days before your statement is due (we'll send an email reminder) then your statements will reflect your usage exactly.

    However the advantage of submitting more than one meter reading is that if you do forget to submit your meter reading before a statement, our estimates will be more accurate. That's because we'll have more data points to calculate an accurate estimate.
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