Solved

Why do I have restricted off peak hours?

  • 19 March 2019
  • 24 replies
  • 592 views

5.5 hours of off peak power Not the the 7 hours that Economy7 requires.
For the last six nights and for a week last month my off peak period has been shortened. My system is controlled by the Teleswitch Radio system, I do not have a smart meter and do not want one. I contacted UK power networks last night who told me to report it to OVO energy for a relevant bill correction and for OVO to then contact them about this issue
The OP hours for my area should be 22.30 to 00.30 - 02.30 to 07.30. But have been 00.00 to 00.30 - 02.30 to 07.30 this has affected my heating and my bills, And obviously the many others that are on this system.
Will someone from OVO please help.
icon

Best answer by TerryE 27 March 2019, 23:17

This one is complicated. You should see the following Youtube video for a b/g on the Energy supply chain: Electricity Bill - Who you pay and what you pay for?, and also browse some of the other videos by this author if you are interested. So the supply chain hub from a customer PoV is the Retail energy supplier (OVO in this case) who maintains the business-consumer interface with the end consumers , and then buys that energy (or more accurately power for a time varying profile at a time varying spot price and also pays the DNOs and TNO for transmission and distribution to the consumers tail.

AFAIK, the actual contractual relationship for Teleswitch Radio is with the DNOs. and this setup all predates the current electricity market structure set up completed in the early 2000s. This is why the use of TR and its operating modes vary by DNO rather than RES. Even so your contract is with OVO to supply dual rate electricity with 7 hrs a day at the cheap rate, and as I read the OVO T&Cs, this is their problem that their subcontractor is failing in this obligation. OVOs markup is there to cover the management of this complexity and hide it from the consumer.

I therefore suggest that that you do have an arguable case for a fair rebate for additional costs incurred for this failure. However given that the current average daytime temperature is now in the low 10s °C and we are already well into the spring warm up, I think that OVO could validly argue that any system sized to provide peak heating in Dec/Jan on 7 hrs a night will provide perfectly adequate heat for Mar / Apr on 5½ hrs, so this is more of an annoyance than having a material addition cost or capability to heat your home during a fairly mild spring..
View original

24 replies

Userlevel 6
Badge +4
Hi @markchatham,

This is a really bizarre situation. I don't know what would have caused your Eco7 hours to change in this way.

Two rate meters controlled by Teleswitch normally get changed when the clocks go forward/back. In Spring, this would shift the hours forward by 1, and then in Autumn they'd go back to the normal times.

I'd advise getting in touch with the team on 0330 303 5063 so they can investigate.

Can I ask how you discovered they'd changed?

Cheers
Hello Nancy, I no the times because my teleswitch clunks loudly and the storage heater sockets have red LEDs on when powered. Also I'm cold at midnight.
Userlevel 6
Badge +4
Hi @markchatham,

You'd need to complete a Load Test to check when the off-peak rate is turned on. You can find instructions on how to complete this here. I'd advise taking the readings at 7am and 11pm, to see which rate is clocking at this time.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Cheers
Hello and thank you for your response, As previously stated My system is the radio teleswitch this is controlled by a radio signal. The times for the South East area are 22.30 to 00.30 and 02.30 to 07.30, This alters by one hour in summer time.
Please understand that I am not mistaken I have been at this address for 20 years and the current off peak hours are being cut regularly. My concern is that hundreds of thousands of people are unknowingly being affected by this.
I have now fitted a timer and started to log shortages. If OVO or UK power networks or Ofgem are interested then I will have something to forward.
Userlevel 6
Badge +4
Hi @markchatham,

If you've got a traditional (non smart) meter, then the off-peak times are pre-programmed within the meter and wouldn't be altered. If you've got a smart meter, the times are set to 12am to 7am.

We've got no authority to change your Eco7 times, and wouldn't attempt to do so either.

@PeterR1947 @TerryE - have either of you heard of this happening before?

Cheers
Userlevel 6
Badge +1
@Nancy_OVO @markchatham As I understand it, there isn't a fixed time for E7 when a radio teleswitch is used. I think that they provide the E7 rate for a total of seven hours between the hours 11:30pm and 08:30 am. This is so they can load shed should there be a high load (unlikely?) between these hours. I'm not sure however that seven hours is guaranteed although I think it is.

Peter
Hello Peter, you are correct, generally my switch times are as I listed. The old SeeBoard south east area. My issue is the hours are being cut to 5.5 hours. And should be 7. Yes I'm guessing there is a loading issue but the cut hours could be made up later. I hope it not just a money maker.
I have kept a nerdy log for anyone interested, here it is;
Tues 4/2/19 off peak 00.00 to 00.30 ...0230 to 7.30
Wed 5/2. 00.00 to 00.30. 0230 to 7.30
Thurs 6/2 same
Fri 7/2 same
Sub total 6 hours short.


Thurs 14/3. Off peak 00.00 to 00.30 02.30 to 07.30.
Fri 15th same as above.
Sat 16th same as above
Sun 17 same
Mon 18 same
Sub Total 7.5 hours short.

Thurs 21. 22.30-22.50. 00.00-00.30. 0230-0730
Fri 22nd. 0000-0030. 0230-0730.
Sat 23. As above
Sun 24. As above.
Sub Total 5 hours and 40 mins short.

Thirteen days ,19 hours 10 mins short off peak hours.
Userlevel 3
This one is complicated. You should see the following Youtube video for a b/g on the Energy supply chain: Electricity Bill - Who you pay and what you pay for?, and also browse some of the other videos by this author if you are interested. So the supply chain hub from a customer PoV is the Retail energy supplier (OVO in this case) who maintains the business-consumer interface with the end consumers , and then buys that energy (or more accurately power for a time varying profile at a time varying spot price and also pays the DNOs and TNO for transmission and distribution to the consumers tail.

AFAIK, the actual contractual relationship for Teleswitch Radio is with the DNOs. and this setup all predates the current electricity market structure set up completed in the early 2000s. This is why the use of TR and its operating modes vary by DNO rather than RES. Even so your contract is with OVO to supply dual rate electricity with 7 hrs a day at the cheap rate, and as I read the OVO T&Cs, this is their problem that their subcontractor is failing in this obligation. OVOs markup is there to cover the management of this complexity and hide it from the consumer.

I therefore suggest that that you do have an arguable case for a fair rebate for additional costs incurred for this failure. However given that the current average daytime temperature is now in the low 10s °C and we are already well into the spring warm up, I think that OVO could validly argue that any system sized to provide peak heating in Dec/Jan on 7 hrs a night will provide perfectly adequate heat for Mar / Apr on 5½ hrs, so this is more of an annoyance than having a material addition cost or capability to heat your home during a fairly mild spring..
Thanks Terrye, you understand what I'm asking, and the teleswitch system. I did originally bring this up with UK power networks who advised me that it was for OVO to escalate it to them, But no one at Ovo seemed to understand my system and had decided I didn't no what I was talking about.
I think our energy system is to complicated and it seems possibly unaccountable . again I am grateful for your intelligent and full reply, I will check out the links.
All the best Mark.
Userlevel 2
Badge
Have you managed to get this sorted @markchatham?

If not, I'd recommend getting in touch with us via hello@ovoenergy.com

Cheers
Thanks for asking, Everything has been working correctly. Seven hours off peak again.
Userlevel 6
Badge +4
Glad to hear that, @markchatham 🙂
I have just noticed that I have the exact same problem on a radio switch system.
I am not at all happy that I have been paying more than I should as I set up all my big users (washing machine/dishwasher etc) to go on when I thought I was getting cheaper electricity.

To whom do I make a complaint and how do I go about claiming some financial compensation for this overcharge?
Userlevel 5
Badge
Welcome to the forum @Grumpypurple, this is something our team will need to look into for you.

You can send us a message on Facebook, Twitter or email the team on hello@ovoenergy.com, or give them a call. You can reach our Customer Care team 9-5 Monday-Friday on 0330 30 5063.

Hope this helps!
I have now had 4 different answers from OVO about when my off peak hours are and spent 2 hours on the phone.
I fail to understand how OVO doesnt know what I should be getting. Ended up speaking to the meter team who couldn't explain why I am getting different times than they think I should be.
Their method of diagnosis of what times I get off peak is to take readings at 9 pm and 9 am which will tell them absolutely nothing other than I am getting some off peak overnight but not when it changes rate.
Their only thought is that my radio switch is defective and needs to be replaced, despite the fact that it reliably flips every night and morning at exactly the same times, even though these are not the times that OVO believes they should be.
I am very tempted just to work out what my times are and stick with them and give up trying to get an answer from OVO.
Userlevel 5
Badge
This does sound like it's been a bother, @Grumpypurple.

It sounds like the metering team have asked you to perform a load test, this can help determine the off peak and on peak times of the meter, but I appreciate this wont determine the time of the change. In any case our team are going to be the best place to get advise.

I'm sorry I can't be of any further help.

After a lot of discussion with various people in OVO I thought I had got a definitive answer to when my off peak hours are from someone called Elf in August. He/she said:

Your meter's peak and off peak periods are governed by a radio time-switch and the time periods are:

OFF PEAK: 1am to 7am and 11pm to 12.00am

PEAK: 12am to 1am and 7am to 11pm

All UK electricity meter radio time-switches are linked to GMT and do not adjust for BST, so in summer your peak/off peak hours will be different by one hour and you will need to adjust your usage pattern accordingly.

 

We are now in GMT/UTC and I am still getting off peak until 0800. 

I despair that anyone in OVO has the slightest clue about what my off peak hours are and I cant set my off peak devices to the correct times so it is costing me money. 

Please can OVO get its act together and find someone in the organisation who knows what they are talking about.

I am very grumpy as this is wasting my time.

 

 

 

 

Userlevel 5
Badge

It sounds like Elf gave you the correct information, @Grumpypurple, when it is daylight savings in the winter, the clocks will push the meter forward an hour because our time is changed to an hour earlier but the meters isn’t. 

I hope this helps.

Amy

I think that you have got the adjustment the wrong way around.

0700 BST is the same as 0600 GMT as BST is one hour ahead, which is why we put the clocks back in the autumn.

0700 GMT would become 0800 BST.

Elf stated that the time periods are set in GMT. We are now in GMT so Elf’s times should apply and off peak should end at 0700. Mine ends at 0800.

In July (BST) when this thread started my off peak came on at midnight, which is correct according to Elf but I went onto day rate at 0730, which doesnt seem to tie in to anything.

One night I will stay up late and check what happens between midnight and 0200.

But as it stands I am no nearer getting to the truth.

 

Jos

 

For info here are the various OVO responses I have had:

27 March

The economy 7 will kick in between 22:30 - 00:30 and 02:30 - 07:30. 

I hope this has been of some assistance to you.

Kind regards,

Aimee

24 July

I have input your meter details into our systems which show us your peak and off peak rates. Your off peak hours should be between 0015 until 0715. Your meter is also not affected by Day time savings as it has a built in teleswitch which operates using using a radio signal. This means that your meter is able to  adjust timezone based on the time of year (BST/GMT).

Kind Regards

Tracy

24 July

I am very sorry that your meter is showing different off-peak and peak times. I have checked the system again for you today and it is displaying your economy 7 times as 22:30 - 00:30 and 02:30 - 07:30.

This system is always correct, These are the times that you are being charged the night rate.

Kind regards,

Thomas

1 August

Your meter's peak and off peak periods are governed by a radio time-switch and the time periods are:

OFF PEAK: 1am to 7am and 11pm to 12.00am

PEAK: 12am to 1am and 7am to 11pm

All UK electricity meter radio time-switches are linked to GMT and do not adjust for BST, so in summer your peak/off peak hours will be different by one hour and you will need to adjust your usage pattern accordingly.

Kind regards,

Elf

14 November

After checking with our Billing Team for you today, they have provided further information, with any Economy 7 meter there is a delay period between the Peak and Off Peak Rate. 

Your meter's peak and off peak periods are governed by a radio time-switch and the time periods are:

OFF PEAK: 1am to 7am and 11pm to 12.00am

PEAK: 12am to 1am and 7am to 11pm

All UK electricity meter radio time-switches are linked to GMT and do not adjust for BST, so in summer your peak/off peak hours will be different by one hour and you will need to adjust your usage pattern accordingly.

 

Userlevel 6
Badge +4

Hi @Grumpypurple,

Wow - I’m really surprised to hear all these differing times. All advisors should be using the same resources to get these times for customers, so they should be getting the same results.

I’d like to look into this myself - can you pop me a PM with your account number, full name an DoB?

Thanks

Nancy

Thanks. I have searched everywhere to see how to write a private message but havent discovered how to do it.

Perhaps another issue that OVO could make clearer.

If you can advise me how to send you a PM I will provide the details you need.

Userlevel 5

Just click on @Nancy_OVO’s username and her profile will come up, you’ll see two options to “follow member” or “send message” just click on the send message option! :) 

Thanks Eva.

Reply