Our neighbour's shop is about the same size and the opening hours are almost the same as ours. Why is their electricity bill lower than ours?
We can't make a direct comparison of electricity consumption between different business units as the amount of electricity used depends on many different factors. Although the floor areas and opening hours may be the same, the energy consumption by two business units is directly dependent on the business nature, how each business unit uses electricity, the number and type of electrical appliances each has and whether they are energy efficient.
Why is my electricity bill higher than the previous one?
The amount of electricity consumed depends on many different factors. Take a look at this three-point checklist:
(1) Check for any difference between the period covered in the current bill and the previous one
To optimise resources, the route the meter reader takes is adjusted every month, taking into account various factors. This may affect the total number of days of electricity consumption covered by the bill, which in turn, affects the calculation of the total amount due. For example, if the total number of days of electricity consumption is 31 in the current bill compared to 29 in the previous bill, you might think your electricity bill has gone up. Check the number of days of electricity consumption on your bill and compare it with previous bills. Please refer to the illustration below:
(2) Check to see if the electricity consumption charged is based on an estimate
If we have been unable to gain access to read your meter, we will make an estimate of the total units consumed based on your previous electricity consumption. Any difference will be adjusted for the next bill when we can actually read your meter. We will indicate on the bill that it is an estimated figure. You can follow the instructions in the Important Messages box to inform us of the actual meter reading. Please refer to the illustration below:
(3) Finally, check to see if there is a significant difference in the daily average electricity consumption in the current bill as compared to the last one or one from the same period last year.
Another useful piece of information on the bill is the ‘Average Daily Electricity Consumption’ graph. The graph compares the average daily units of electricity consumed between the current and previous bills. This graph helps you understand the pattern of your electricity use.
Apart from above 3 major factors, certain environmental factors will also affect your electricity consumption, for example, the temperature and humidity of the months covered by the electricity bill, the addition of new electrical appliances. Other factors include the age of electrical appliances, installation locations and the levels of energy efficiency, etc.
Can you explain how did the environmental factors affect electricity consumption?
Temperature naturally affects the amount of electricity consumed, but did you know that humidity has the same effect?
Most people are aware that using heaters and air-conditioners consumes electricity. For example, a 2,000 watt electrical heater that is running for 1 hour consumes around 2 units of electricity, which is roughly the same as the electricity consumption of a 2 HP air-conditioner running for 1 hour. Did you know that dehumidifiers also consume electricity? In fact, a 24litre dehumidifier running for 1 hour consumes around 0.3 units of electricity, which is about the same electricity consumption of a 0.75 HP air conditioner running for ½ hour.
With changes in temperature, the electricity consumption of certain electrical appliances, such as refrigerators, air-conditioners and electric heaters, will also be affected.
New electrical appliances
A plasma TV set, for example, uses more energy than a traditional cathode ray tube TV set, and a desk top computer uses more power than a notebook computer.
Installation location, age, and energy efficiency level of electrical appliances
Is the location of the air-conditioner in direct sunlight? Is the filter cleaned regularly? These will affect how much energy an air-conditioner consumes.
An air-conditioner with a Grade 1 energy label uses 15% less electricity than one with a Grade 3 energy label. A refrigerator with a Grade 1 energy label uses 35% less electricity than one with a Grade 3 energy label.
An energy saving light bulb uses only ¼ as much electricity as a regular light bulb, with the same level of brightness. A 20 watt energy saving light bulb, for example, gives off the same brightness as a 100 watt filament bulb. The expected lifespan of an energy saving light bulb is 8 to 10 times that of regular light bulbs. This makes energy saving light bulbs a more sensible choice in terms of long-term material costs; it also means lower electricity bills and a greener living environment.