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How does the online account Direct Debit calculation factor in my new and efficient boiler installation?

  • 22 June 2021
  • 6 replies
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Userlevel 1

I’ve had a new boiler installed in my home, we’ve gone from a 1970s ~60% efficient boiler (probably less) to a 94% efficient A-rated boiler. The old (G-rated?) water cylinder is now a C-rated thermal store.

 

So, the gas payments should be going down considerably, estimating a reduction of £500 a year. The OVO billing system doesn’t know this.  I can only guess what the payments should be with some hints from my heating engineer. How does this get handled?

 

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Best answer by Blastoise186 22 June 2021, 13:34

Welcome @cybermaggedon !

I have some good news for you, in more than one way. Firstly, since you’ve switched out the gas boiler for a new one, your gas usage will likely plummet quite a lot. This will also cause your usage to drop and you’ll begin to pay less too. By the time you reach the next Direct Debit Review, MyOVO should hopefully have enough data to have picked up on the changes and suggest a reduced monthly payment. It will then automatically apply the changes unless you object.

However, it may be possible for the Support Team to intervene sooner than that. If you let them know about the changes that you’ve made, they might be able to do some number crunching and attempt to calculate new estimates. If they agree to reduce the payments, they can also override the system and force it through.

Don’t worry though, you’ll only ever pay for what you actually use. All the rest will simply stay on the account and be carried over to future bills. :)

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6 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +4

Welcome @cybermaggedon !

I have some good news for you, in more than one way. Firstly, since you’ve switched out the gas boiler for a new one, your gas usage will likely plummet quite a lot. This will also cause your usage to drop and you’ll begin to pay less too. By the time you reach the next Direct Debit Review, MyOVO should hopefully have enough data to have picked up on the changes and suggest a reduced monthly payment. It will then automatically apply the changes unless you object.

However, it may be possible for the Support Team to intervene sooner than that. If you let them know about the changes that you’ve made, they might be able to do some number crunching and attempt to calculate new estimates. If they agree to reduce the payments, they can also override the system and force it through.

Don’t worry though, you’ll only ever pay for what you actually use. All the rest will simply stay on the account and be carried over to future bills. :)

Userlevel 7

Great question this, @cybermaggedon and nice work on that efficient boiler. We’d prefer an air source heat pump, but using less gas is still a win for your wallet and a win for the planet!

 

Since you’ve switched out the gas boiler for a new one, your gas usage will likely plummet quite a lot. This will also cause your usage to drop and you’ll begin to pay less too. By the time you reach the next Direct Debit Review, MyOVO should hopefully have enough data to have picked up on the changes and suggest a reduced monthly payment. It will then automatically apply the changes unless you object.

However, it may be possible for the Support Team to intervene sooner than that. If you let them know about the changes that you’ve made, they might be able to do some number crunching and attempt to calculate new estimates. If they agree to reduce the payments, they can also override the system and force it through.

 

Yep this is pretty spot on. We’ll review your Direct Debit regularly and if you have a smart meter (or submit your meter readings manually regularly) we’ll see that you’re set to exceed the £0 target for the contract end date and make a reduction.  

 

 

My advice is to let this happen automatically. If you happen to build up some surplus credit, you can request a refund online, and in the meantime, earn interest on your credit!

Userlevel 1

I have some good news for you, in more than one way. Firstly, since you’ve switched out the gas boiler for a new one, your gas usage will likely plummet quite a lot. This will also cause your usage to drop and you’ll begin to pay less too. By the time you reach the next Direct Debit Review, MyOVO should hopefully have enough data to have picked up on the changes and suggest a reduced monthly payment. It will then automatically apply the changes unless you object.

However, it may be possible for the Support Team to intervene sooner than that. If you let them know about the changes that you’ve made, they might be able to do some number crunching and attempt to calculate new estimates. If they agree to reduce the payments, they can also override the system and force it through.

Don’t worry though, you’ll only ever pay for what you actually use. All the rest will simply stay on the account and be carried over to future bills. :)

 

Thanks @Blastoise186 and @Tim_OVO. My current credit looks like about a year’s worth of energy costs, I contacted support about reducing my monthly payments, but they like to do this based on 3 months’ usage as you say @Tim_OVO. I’ll leave it for now and review in 3 months. Smart meters installed this week, so that should help the process.

@Tim_OVO this install is part of a much bigger project, making a big old victorian house energy efficient is quite a bit of work. Solar coming on-stream next year (once the roof is fixed), and a seasonal shift system.

Userlevel 7
Badge +4

Nice! The smart meter upgrade will definitely help there. Not least because it will give OVO accurate readings once it's fully commissioned. 

Userlevel 7

I’ll leave it for now and review in 3 months. Smart meters installed this week, so that should help the process.

 

 

Don’t forget that you could request a refund for some or all of that excess credit…. 

 

@Tim_OVO this install is part of a much bigger project, making a big old victorian house energy efficient is quite a bit of work. Solar coming on-stream next year (once the roof is fixed), and a seasonal shift system.

 

Ummmm wow @cybermaggedon I’m super keen to hear more about this. How would you feel about making a new post sometime to share what you’ve done, what you’re planning on doing and results? This kind of activity might really help anyone following in your footsteps and looking from some advice. 

 

Plus you have access to home builders and engineers here who might even be able to help. For example see @Transparent’s 5 part topic series on domestic heating systems, here:

 

 

Just an idea, I’m happy to help or advise, and of course it doesn’t need to be an essay. 


Tim

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

Hi @cybermaggedon - the Direct Debit assessment mechanism works like a digital filter. It compares with the previous meter readings and adjusts the ‘average’. Thus a sudden change, such as you’ve made, takes time to reduce the amount being requested.

Your new Smart Meters aren’t immediately activated on the Billing System. There can be several days or weeks whilst off-site commissioning work is done. This completes when OVO send your actual tariff data to the Communications Hub, and you are likely to see that reflected on your IHD.

Homes with Smart Meters are going to have their Direct Debit adjusted sooner because it will be sending daily readings, rather than monthly.

You will receive an email recommending the new DD payment. But you can pre-empt this by visiting your online account and selecting the link from the Payments page:

 

Remember that you earn interest on the amount you are in credit with OVO up to £1000. So many customers keep their monthly payments artificially high. It’s often more than you could earn from a bank’s savings account.

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