Electric shock

12Mar10

Three months ago I told you that we had a new electricity meter. You may recall that the meter is connected to a device in the kitchen which shows us how much energy we are using every 15 seconds. A bright green, amber or red light alerts us when our electricity use gets higher.

Since then we have been stumbling around in the dim glow of energy saving bulbs, we have been switching off lights and appliances every time we notice them, we have moved all washing up, clothes washing and bread-making activities to the cheaper-rate-dead-of-night. I have even disconnected the speakers from my laptop.

Yesterday we got our first electricity bill since the change of meter. I opened the envelope with eager anticipation to see how much money we have saved and how many less kilowatt hours we are using each day.

Our bill has increased. Our daily electricity usage has increased and our dead-of-night consumption has decreased. How can this be?

Aha! I thought. There is seasonal variation. In the cold dark winter months we have the lights and central heating pump on for longer. That will explain the difference.

But no. A quick investigation reveals that we are using more electricity than in the same period last year. What can have changed? Why are our decisive actions not making a difference? What is different from last year?

I can only think of two changes. First, I am now working from home on some days. But I’m sure that doesn’t make a difference as I am usually freezing and squinting at my keyboard in the near-darkness. Second… we have a new smart device in the kitchen with an LCD screen and a bright light showing how much electricity we are using.

Could it all be a plot by the energy industry to get us to use more power?



3 Responses to “Electric shock”

  1. 1 Ian

    Does the device in the kitchen use power … but not tell you? All those red, amber and green lights can’t come cheap!

  2. 2 Mrs R

    Presumably they keep on glowing through the night though so that wouldn’t explain why the nighttime consumption has decreased.

  3. 3 Andrew

    Is the clock set …. not 12 hours out :o)


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