I am still following this thread after I posted a message half a year ago, was hoping we will have a clear answer from SP, it seems to be still a hopeless on going problem. My case is a bit awkward as I switched supplier after SP installed the smart meters, SP is no longer my supplier, my online account is no longer active.
I looked at our direct debit payment for past few years, thought I'll just share with you below. The monthly payment for both gas and electricity during 2015 to 2017 is more or less £100 in average (2015 is a bit higher, our second daughter was born in Dec 2014 and my monther-in-law was with us during the first half of 2015, after we closed the account with SP, we had about £200 refund in total). SP installed the smart meters January 2018 (can't remember the exact date) and my fixed tariff with SP was soon expired. When I looked to renew it seemed there was nothing better than what we had before. Never shopped around before, but tried this time, used 'USWITCH' site, switched to British Gas after February 2018, I used the annual consumption figures in the past, uswitch predicted I may save over £200 with British gas. Initially the monthly payment was £77.5, then increased to £214 since August, now we have been paying this high monthly rate for half a year, and I don't think we are overpaying much based on the consumption figures from these 'SMART' meters. For our energy consumption behaviour and home appliances, we have nothing changed in the last few years, there is no obvious reason for the mysterious increase of consumption - more than doubled. My trouble is that - British Gas won't mind this, they charge based on the readings; I would assume Scottish Power won't bother either as I am no longer with them! The very first time I made a switch, and thought I could save money, how ironic!
@Yingchun Have you checked your balance ? I should think BG work on the same principle as SP when customers pay by DD in that they estimate the usage over the year and then divide the total estimated usage by 12 to get a monthly DD. But that's only a starting point. Any increase in your usage, however small, will increase the following DDs exponentially as the supplier assumes the increase in usage will continue proportionally during the rest of the year. If you joined BG in March and your usage was low, your DD would be low, then as you get into autumn and you use more, the increase skews the projection so the supplier thinks you're using incredibly higher than your original estimation, resulting in a huge increase in the DD
If your account isn't in credit with BG there may be another reason for the huge bill incease, but above is where these comparison sites usually fall down - they don't take into account the time of year people start with a new supplier and the usage projection that new supplier employs. It always comes as a shock when you're told your payments will be low and in autumn they go up dramatically - but then, if the suppliers told people the REAL winter figures they'd be paying, I suppose no one would go onto their tariff.
Hi Yingchun, Check the daily standing charge of your BG account. We should always look at the daily standing charge and the p/kWh on our bills as these are the only true explanation of costs, assuming the meters record accurately of course.
@Yingchun So that makes your aug to jan DDs about 40% higher than 2015/16 even when for just over a month of 2018 you were using minimal supply. That does seem odd.
I would be inclined to look deeper into my account charges and pay,ments, looking for specific anomalies, especially if British Gas have been billing you from smart readings obtained from a meter installed by Scottish Power. I wasn't under the impression this could be reliably done unless you are one of those lucky few who have a SMETs2 meter. I've always been told changing suppliers would dumb down the meter so actuals had to be taken until the SMETs2 infrastructure was s et up. If you have taken your own regular readings you would have noticed where and when the increas was cropping up. Is it possible all BG bills were actually estimates? Perhaps if you never queried them, they wouldn't have checked.