Discuss Meter reading corrupted in the Electrical Forum area at ElectriciansForums.net

Karen W

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Hi looking for a bit of advice about an issue I have with some work arranged by a social landlord. The landlord had to fit a new consumer unit but sent out a contractor to fit an isolator switch the week before. He also renewed all the wiring from the mains fuse and the meter tails. When the new consumer unit was being fitted I got an email from my power company asking for meter readings. At this point I noticed a discrepancy in my meter reading of around 40,000 kw/hr. It’s one of the old style meters in the black case with the numbers that turn round.
The contractor originally denied having moved or changed the meter in any way however now admits moving it as I provided photographs which proved he did. The contractor and my landlord are both saying nothing could have happened to my meter during the works carried out. My power company intend to bill me as I have evidence of how the meter reading became corrupted during the work.

Can anyone here shed any light on what might have happened?
 

Mikegh

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Yes this is where the 40,000 figure comes from.
I said to the power company the reading has gone backwards but they said no it’s gone forwards by 40,000 but that does seem unusually high.
Haven't seen it but based on posts above looks like digits can skip.Telectrixs post seems a strong possibility then.

Power company's default position is reading occured through usage.

As advised make sure payment can't go through or you'll have 2 battles
 
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Karen W

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The most important thing to do first is to stop the Energy supplier from billing the O.P
If the O.P is on a similar rate to me per kwh then the outstanding for the 40000 is around £6700.

OFGEM should be able to at least get the supplier to hold back the charge for now on the basis, as Littlespark's example, it would have been almost impossible for that usage during the period.

However just a warning,the energy supplier may argue that the O.P has been sending under readings in and the 40000 is an accumulation of the outstanding.

AS the Energy supplier have closed the case that's perfect for an OFGEM complaint as the supplier will no longer discuss it and don't appear to have made any reasonable attempt to sort it out.

Whoever fitted the Isolator also appears to have replaced the meter to consumer unit tails ((brown / blue cables) and the tails from the fuse cutout (lower right) to the meter.
As the meter and the tails to the cutout are the property of the Energy supplier then whoever did that work, which involved cutting the meter seals and moving it, MUST have had authorisation from the Energy supplier.
If they didn't get it then the Energy supplier also needs to chase up why the work was done without their knowledge, initially through the Landlord who will have paid for someone to do it.
Thanks for this. I’ve asked the power company for a letter of deadlock if they are saying the investigation has been closed so that I can take it to Ofgem.
My understanding is that the power company and the DNO should have been involved but the power company have just said the moving of the meter looks reasonable in the circumstances despite the fact they knew nothing about it.
 
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Karen W

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Thank you to everyone for your responses and advice.
I have contacted the power company again and raised the issue of the meter being moved having the potential to change the numbers in the meter and I have asked for a letter of deadlock if the matter can not be resolved so that I can take the issue to Ofgem.
I have also raised a formal complaint with the landlords as they have not taken responsibility for the issues caused by the work they carried out.
I post any updates I get.
 

snowhead

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but the power company have just said the moving of the meter looks reasonable in the circumstances despite the fact they knew nothing about it.

So they accept the meter has been moved.

I doubt you'll get the person who moved the meter to admit they dropped it or mishandled it but if they knew you were faced with a £6000 + bill as a result of their actions they may have to think about what they did more.
 
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Karen W

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So they accept the meter has been moved.

I doubt you'll get the person who moved the meter to admit they dropped it or mishandled it but if they knew you were faced with a £6000 + bill as a result of their actions they may have to think about what they did more.
The contractors are well aware of what’s going on but are saying nothing the electrician did could have affected the meter. They don’t care that I’m facing such a big bill.
I have a photograph showing chips to the casing of the meter on the top left hand corner but I don’t know if this would be enough to evidence something happened to it as I don’t have a before image. I’ve logged it with the power company anyway.
 

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Karen W

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The contractors are well aware of what’s going on but are saying nothing the electrician did could have affected the meter. They don’t care that I’m facing such a big bill.
I have a photograph showing chips to the casing of the meter on the top left hand corner but I don’t know if this would be enough to evidence something happened to it as I don’t have a before image. I’ve logged it with the power company anyway.
 

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Karen W

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The meter looks like a Sangamo Floton meter.
I found this on a forum from a New Zealand (basically all the same systems as the U.K) meter calibrator / tester.

The Floton bearing meters 1970's ( Sangamo series ) did not have any major problems at all except Jamming jumping dials.
Thank you. Yes it says Sangamo and Floton on the face of the meter. I’ll look into that too.
 

baldelectrician

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Just had a look at the earlier picture, the meter seems damaged

Call your supplier and request they change the meter today as an urgent safety matter- let them know the social landlord contractor may have damaged it during works.
Emphasise you can see physical damage to the meter and you would like it replaced

As others have said- it is not possible to use this much power in that time, point this out also

As I said earlier- record the call and let them know at the start of the call.
 
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Karen W

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Just had a look at the earlier picture, the meter seems damaged

Call your supplier and request they change the meter today as an urgent safety matter- let them know the social landlord contractor may have damaged it during works.
Emphasise you can see physical damage to the meter and you would like it replaced

As others have said- it is not possible to use this much power in that time, point this out also

As I said earlier- record the call and let them know at the start of the call.
I’ve sent the images to the power company to log them as evidence. They have a copy of all the email correspondence with the landlords too.
I have everything in writing as evidence should I need it.
 
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Karen W

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I'd be reluctant to let the meter be removed unless it was going to an independant meter test / calibration company.
Once the supplier has the meter and it's been thrown around in vans along the way, you've lost any evidence that the meter may be faulty.
The power company is now sending someone out to inspect the meter. I have kept all the photographs and emails as evidence too.
They said if the meter is found to be faulty they will replace it and bill me accordingly. Maybe I shouldn’t let them remove it until this is all sorted then.
 

Vortigern

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I may be a bit old and stupid but I am sure 77001 - 17296 = 59705? i.e. 60k difference! Thus your meter moved back 60K by what appears to be the first digit slipping. I would be asking for a refund on the basis of the energy companys inability to see that it has gone back, and saying forward hence charging you for the extra. Incompetent hardly describes it.
 

brianmoooore

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Computer also says that if it's gone forwards, then you must have used the electricity.
That's the way things work with big, faceless companies. The default is that they are right and you are wrong, so they leave it to you to protest, and then protest again and again, and eventually someone will actually listen.
Don't take it personally, don't pay, and don't worry about it. Eventually they'll see sense, and you will normally get a little ex gratia payment for your trouble.
 

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