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How to actually get some help

posted by stella86 | 3 years ago
Ok so I moved into my home in March. Scottish power are the suppliers. Since then I have had nothing but problems. I provided meter readings when I moved in. To be told they were wrong as the smart meter had provided readings. When I called two months later because I had received nothing from Scottish power I was told they were estimated readings!! They are charging me over £250 per month. They keep upping my DD and they now want £174 per month. Yet on my bills it stares I’m paying by quarterly cash. I have submitted meter readings every month yet my bills are still estimated. I have screen shots of my submitted readings yet they still don’t care. I am now nearly £400 in debit as they are telling me I’m using over 200 units per month nightly and over 500 units per month daily. I have complained and was told the meter wasn’t sending the readings due to a signal fault. I was told an engineer would come to fix it. Nobody came. I get passed from pillar to post and I was told I couldn’t speak to a manager last time I called. I am now getting letters demanding full payment for an estimated bill. The point of smart meters is to stop estimated bills!!!! Somebody please help
9 comments

posted by Jonnel | 3 years ago
Re: How to actually get some help

If you haven't lodged a complaint with Scottish Power yet you should do so - get the ball rolling so you can take it to the Ombudsman as soon as possbe.

I don't have a smartmeter (for just this kind of reason) so I don't know if there is a fault reporting hotline to ring specifically for them, but if there is, call that, bypassing SP and get your meter checked out asap. In the meantime, report a fault with your smartmeter to SP and lodge a complaint on that too - the more fuss you make the more likely they are to take notice of you. SP is a big dumb, sleepy beast and the finance department probably doesn't have the slightest idea there's a problem.

BTW - don't let them fob you off with saying theyll call you back - they won't.

posted by ItsRKM | 3 years ago
Re: How to actually get some help
Why did you agree to Direct Debit payment when the payment terms on the tariff are quarterly cash?
At some point you must have completed a DD authorisation for your bank. Cancel the DD with your bank and tell SP you will only pay on the terms stated on your bill.

Or, as I am currently in the process of doing, switch suppliers away from SP -they will then have to close your account with verified meter readings provided by the new supplier.
I would rather pay more to get reliable billing than continue with the farcical "Manuel in a Kilt" that SP now is!

posted by AndySwain | 3 years ago
Re: How to actually get some help

Good luck!!!!

We've been suffering problems with the  Scottish Power 'smart' meters for nearly 12 months!

When realised and reported, last Spring,  we've had a whole variety of responses/excuses, and attempts to bounce the blame between  the installer and Scottish Power. Allegedly, the installer couldn't attempt a fix until a certain request was submitted by Scottish Power, but then SP say that there's a more fundamental problem at the data centre!

I even put the comments through to the CEO's office, and got fobbed off.

And yet STILL the adverts in the media claim(/lie) that a smart meter will SAVE people money. It only saves people money if they can see their energy consumption, (which I can't), and it's actually losing me time/money in having to check that the meter readings are actually going through ok!!!

Even the options on the online dashboard have been downgraded,  for months!

I've now had enough - Let's see what the Ombudsman says...

 

 

posted by ItsRKM | 3 years ago
Re: How to actually get some help

Andy Swain wrote "And yet STILL the adverts in the media claim(/lie) that a smart meter will SAVE people money. It only saves people money if they can see their energy consumption, (which I can't)".

Andy, you are not missing nearly as much as you think.

The only time I look at mine is to submit manual readings - and even then Scottish Power were sending someone round a couple of days later to check my readings (and issuing new bills for those few days, because their dumb system issues a bill every time a meter reading is entered!).

Even  Mike O'brien admitted he has had his removed because they are a complete waste of time and after a few days he never even looked at it!  He was only the Minister of State for Energy that launched the smart meter roll-out.

posted by Davc | 3 years ago
Re: How to actually get some help

Hi RKM.  The real reason for smart meters is to enable variable pricing and so even out peaks of demand. This leads to better management of power stations and green energy. Once everyone has a smart meter it will become normal to pay extra for power early in the evening when everyone comes home and switches on. It will become cheap to run washing machines and tumble driers at night, and so on.    Making consumers aware by looking at their IHD is only a small part of the overall stategy, and yes you are right, a smart meter will not save you money unless you look at your IHD and turn off unnecessary appliances.

posted by ItsRKM | 3 years ago
Re: How to actually get some help

        Hi   Davc,

I am well aware that the "real" reason for smart meters is to benefit suppliers, not consumers, but that isn't how they are being sold. It is a con, today's PPI in the making, and yet another mis-conceived policy.

There will be no real saving with time variable pricing: not once the insurance companies make the connection with increased payouts - and they will.

It is completely irresponsible to run washing machines or tumble driers overnight!  It isn't just the noise, its simple common sense and safety.  Companies with price policies which persuade people to take such risks would, sooner or later, be complicit in mass murder.   For anyone who thinks that is being over-cautious, I have a single word response: GRENFELL.

So the real reason for smart meters is to kill consumers, for the convenience of suppliers.

posted by AndySwain | 3 years ago
Re: How to actually get some help

What annoys me the most is the way that it's the consumer that is being misled and inconvenienced, especially when it then results in 'mishaps' in bills because energy providers such as SP apparently don't even calculate their billing on the frequent 'smart' readings, but on a set of readings they are sent, just at billing time. I discovered this when SP were oblivious to the fact that their 'smart' gas meter hadn't been sending results for months, SP hadn't noticed (or daren't flag it), and I hadn't noticed that our bills were estimated because allegedly everything was now 'smart'!

The fancy features being advertised aren't working, or are flakey or subtly 'unavailable at the moment and they're "working hard to resolve it..." (Ha... ha... ha!), and SP just seem to ignore any complaints.

It's time for the Ombudsman to take action...      but I wouldn't be surprised if that just raises bills...

posted by Davc | 3 years ago
Re: How to actually get some help

Hello RKM. You make a good point about safety of appliances, but off peak times are not all at night, there are Saturday and Sunday mornings , in fact Sunday most of the day. I don’t know how it will all work out but we will have to get used to cheap and expensive time slots. Some predict smart appliances will do it for themselves, so your fridge and freezer would avoid certain time periods if they can. Maybe if the wind is strong we will get flash power sales. Who knows?

posted by Davc | 3 years ago
Re: How to actually get some help

BKM. Of course in the future of power pricing home battery storage will become popular, charge the battery at low cost and use it at high cost, automated of course so you are not even aware. If batteries are sold by monthly fee the savings should pay for the battery rental and still leave a saving. We are not there yet but power is going to get more and more costly and a lot of new technology is just around the corner. Smart meters are the start of this future. But it has been a rocky start and has a long way to go, probably not fully working until 2030.