Question

Why has my refund request failed on my online account?

  • 10 September 2021
  • 11 replies
  • 136 views

Userlevel 1

For the past two weeks or so when requesting a refund I get the message My refund request has failed. My balance is around £1200 and I want to reduce this by £160. This figure combined with my estimated usage will maintain a balance of around £1000 when my next DD is collected. I’ve asked the question with OVO and their reply did nothing to answer my question. They directed me to this forum so my question here is has anyone having the same problem and has anyone received an explanation why it continually fails?

 I will add that I’ve been with OVO since 2017 and have managed my account online without any problems.


11 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +4

Hey there @George !

You’ve been sent to the right place then. :) I think I can probably help to figure this out. I’d like to give you a quick heads up that this forum is public and as a forum volunteer I can’t access your account. Please don’t share personal info here as I can’t do anything useful with it and you might get hit with loads of email spam from random places (spammers do watch this place as well).

The first thing I’d check would be to make sure you've put in a recent meter reading for both your gas and electric meters. If you haven’t done one yet, this is a crucial step before MyOVO will authorise a refund. Once you submit a reading, give it about five minutes for the number crunching and you should then be good to try the refund again.

It doesn’t seem as if you’re attempting to pull out more than the £1,000 limit per refund so I know that’s probably not the issue. You do need to make sure to keep at least one Direct Debit’s worth of credit in the account after the requested refund amount, but I suspect that you’ve already factored that in.

I have a bit of a trick that you might want to try though, but I need to ask something first. Does the refund page in MyOVO look anything like these examples?

Actual appearance may vary slightly

If so, you’re on the new billing platform and my next trick should work (hopefully!). If not, then you’re probably still on the old system, but I have advice that can help there either way. Knowing the answer to this question mainly helps me to know what you’re seeing so that I can get the right notes out of my archives. :)

What you might want to try, is to use the OVO Energy app to see if you can do a refund from that. You’ll find the option under Payments > Ask for a refund. Sometimes these things work in the app in cases where MyOVO doesn’t.

Hope that helps, but please give us a shout if you’re still stuck!

Userlevel 1

Thanks for getting back. I manage my account with the OVO app on my phone. I have a gas and electric smart meter and as my balance changes daily I assume the meters are communicating.

my refund page is very different and probably around three year plus old. Do I need to change my app? But am open to suggestions in the mean time.

Userlevel 7
Badge +4

No worries, you’re doing everything the right way then.

In the same manner, sometimes doing the refund request via MyOVO on the web works in a few cases where the app is misbehaving. They both work in slightly different ways, so that can sometimes work to your advantage.

Given that you said you signed up in 2017, that definitely means you were put on the legacy billing system when you first signed up, while the screenshots I provided are from the new billing platform. You’ll be moved over soon if you haven’t already. You won’t need to replace the app either - it should automatically sort itself out when your account is migrated.

At the moment, I’m wondering if your account might be in the middle of being migrated over to the new platform. I can’t say for sure as I can’t see when these things happen, but it’s possible that a few things might be temporarily unavailable during that process.

If you’re really quick, you might be able to use Live Chat or Phone to request a refund manually. The office is closing in 30 minutes, but the live chat will be open again from 9am tomorrow morning. Otherwise, the office will be open again from 8:30am on Monday.

Userlevel 1

I think you have answered my original question to OVO helpline. I did think it was due to my plan ending soon.
I’m just off out but I’ll give it a bit more time. If I see a change in my app layout I guess I’ve been switched and try again.

Thanks for your help. 
George

 

Userlevel 7

Welcome to the OVO online community, @George!

 

Already some great advice here from our community volunteer, @Blastoise186 - pretty much covered the obvious reasons why you’re struggling to request a refund online:

 

 

The first thing I’d check would be to make sure you've put in a recent meter reading for both your gas and electric meters. If you haven’t done one yet, this is a crucial step before MyOVO will authorise a refund. Once you submit a reading, give it about five minutes for the number crunching and you should then be good to try the refund again.

It doesn’t seem as if you’re attempting to pull out more than the £1,000 limit per refund so I know that’s probably not the issue. You do need to make sure to keep at least one Direct Debit’s worth of credit in the account after the requested refund amount, but I suspect that you’ve already factored that in.

 

It sounds like your account might be on our original billing platform, in which case you’d need to check the last statement you received was billed to actual readings rather than estimates as this can sometimes prevent a refund request. If you’ve got smart meters, it may indicate that there’s been a dip in communication meaning we’ve estimated your usage recently. Have you checked the ‘Meter Readings’ page to see when we last received readings?

 

Hoping this helps get to the bottom of things - keep us posted though, we’re always help to help here where we can! :slight_smile:

 

Userlevel 1

I have been contacted by OVO and I’m not the only one affected by this problem. They are aware and have manually transferred my refund request.

Hopefully when fixed I’ll be able to manage my account once again. 

Userlevel 7
Badge +4

No worries, thanks for letting us know!

There’s only a handful of members still on the legacy billing system and I think the current counter is probably somewhere around 15-20k at this point. I know that loads of members have already been migrated this year alone and the plan is to get everyone migrated before the old system is turned off completely. Anyone who joins now will be on the new billing platform by default as well.

I’ve never had any experience with the legacy system myself though as I only joined last year. That means I’m limited to what I can find from publicly available documentation, forum threads and help guides. Won’t be a problem in the future though!

Userlevel 2

I'm having a similar issue on the app. Requesting a refund and it fails. My balance is £609.91 and it says I can request up to £489.91. I request £450 and it fails. I have a smart meter and on a 2 year fixed plan that started in March 2021.  So don't understand the issue. I just called customer service and they have issued the refund, but also didn't understand why I couldn't do it through the app. I've tried it before a month or so ago and it failed then too. 

Userlevel 7

Welcome back, @Dellara,

 

Thanks for letting us know you too were affected by this app/refund issue. I’ve taken this one away to the team to see if it’s a known issue with a fix in the works, so will keep you all posted here. :thumbsup:

Userlevel 1

Just requested a minimum £5 refund and it has gone through. Hopefully that’s me back to normal.

Thanks for the advice given here.

Userlevel 2

As a follow up, today sure enough and after ringing customer services a couple of days ago my £450 refund has appeared in my bank account. Very efficient and my call originally was dealt with well a speedily. So all good. Still not sure why the app failed. They raised it as a complaint so it's flagged. 👍

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