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Electricity Help

Electricity Help

Old Feb 19th 2011, 6:20 pm
  #46  
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Default Re: Electricity Help

With regards to the ICP there is quite an informative article here

tonysparksinspain.blogspot.com this is a link from the Round Town News free paper
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Old Feb 20th 2011, 5:52 pm
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Default Re: Electricity Help

Originally Posted by amideislas
The we were advised that our service would need to be upgraded to 10800 watts (15A 3 phase, which they didn't really explain - I thought it was 10K per phase, but's that's irrelevant now), but there would be a €45 charge for this. I said again, yes, please do it.

Long story short, after the installation, which cut our capacity to a fraction of we previously had, we were charged €291 for the various taxes, permissions, down payments, etc. for the "upgrade", in addition to €40 for the free installation.

I should point out that it's now impossible to run our water pump without tripping the ICP, so I had no choice to wire around it so that we can pump water.
Using an ICP on a 3 phase supply creates real problems.

In Spain, if you need more than 10kw then you have to have a 3 phase supply. That means that you have 3 live cables coming into the main box. These are 230v each and they are distributed across all the sockets/lights etc in the house via a number of trips (fuses). That way the load is safely spread across all the circuits.

If you have a true 3 phase device such as your pump it needs 400v rather than 230v and that is achieved by connecting it to two phases rather than one phase.

So far so good – BUT, when you have to install an ICP it gets tricky.

You now have a nice beefy 10kw supply but it is controlled by an ICP rated at 45amp but it consists of three separate 15amp ICPs.

This means that each phase is effectively connected to a maximum of 3.3kw supply – that is why it is tripping all the time.

You can improve the situation by getting an electrician to reorganise which appliances are connected to each phase, but even then you will probably need to upgrade again to a 60amp ICP (3x20a) which will give you a total rating of over 13kw with each phase still having only 4.4kw.

I am not sure how a true 3 phase appliance is connected into the system but from what you have said it looks like the pump is over 6kw so it may be impossible to run it on the new reduced supply.

I do speak from the experience of having a similar setup. Originally, as I was on the off peak tariff, an ICP was not required and I could take up to 15kw with no problems. I was forced to have an ICP fitted and it cost me nearly €400 in total.

Now I have to be very careful what is switched on at any one time even though I have a contracted potencia of nearly 14kw which costs me nearly €400/yr just for the standing charge!

I would be much better of changing to a single phase 9.9kw supply (at a lower tariff). It would save me a considerable amount of money and give me a higher effective potencia – but the costs of changing the whole installation could be prohibitive.
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Old Feb 20th 2011, 7:41 pm
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Smile Re: Electricity Help

Yet again that is a brilliant post FRED. It will take me a day or two to assimulate all the info you have given but I will get back on here with info on what I find when I have been in the poolroom.
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Old Feb 21st 2011, 9:00 am
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Default Re: Electricity Help

Originally Posted by Fred James
Using an ICP on a 3 phase supply creates real problems.

I would be much better of changing to a single phase 9.9kw supply (at a lower tariff). It would save me a considerable amount of money and give me a higher effective potencia – but the costs of changing the whole installation could be prohibitive.
Thanks, Fred,

To me it appears as though the entire exercise has little to do with safety or any other rational benefit, other than profit.

The entire implementation of the ICP is a thoughless solution to an arguably nonexistent problem, since it only takes into account peak usage (e.g., wash machine, water heater and tea pot turned on simultaneously = violation), and doesn't consider average usage (e.g., 20 minutes per day in excess, remainder of the day well below the limit). So far, the ICP has served only to cost a lot of people a lot of money, and hasn't achieved one tangible benefit (except the benefit of profit for the electric companies).

The baseline "no-extra-charge" contract is 3.3kw, which is an entirely unsuitable peak limit for most modern homes. The average home must therefore "upgrade" their potencia at significant additional charge to avoid frequent blackouts.

And there doesn't appear to be any sort of safety check to receive this "upgrade" - consumers are forced to pay extra money to receive nominal service, all of this fully supported by, and in full cooperation with the government. Thus it smells of an exercise solely for the purpose of profiteering, because there doesn't appear to be any other justification for it.

Think about it. Let's be really conservative and assume 1 million homes "upgraded" their potencia. Even dismissing the "installation charges", when you calculate those additional monthly tariffs conservatively, it reflects at least €10 - €20 million in additional profits per month (without any incremental cost to the company - it's pure profit). And that's being nice. In reality, it's likely much much more than that.

Safety certainly isn't the rationale. If that were the case, then one would expect safety checks prior to paying/receiving an upgrade of potencia, which never occurs - at least here in Mallorca.

I think the public is much too complacent, apparently wholly accepting the unfair imposition of these substantial tariffs under law. It seems to me that the fairest way to charge for electricity would be charge for what is used, much like paying for petrol at the station. Use more, pay more. Simple, fair, and easy to enforce without cost to the public.

If a customer needs more capacity (e.g., a factory etc.) then they would have the proper wiring and equipment properly installed to support their required capacity, and their actual Kw usage will be higher, and naturally, higher cost. Is this not rational? and fair?

I think the public should revolt. This is simply a matter of taking money from your pockets and putting it in theirs. Nothing more.
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Old Feb 21st 2011, 7:55 pm
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Smile Re: Electricity Help

Originally Posted by John & Kath
Yet again that is a brilliant post FRED. It will take me a day or two to assimulate all the info you have given but I will get back on here with info on what I find when I have been in the poolroom.
My Casa is new and received its Boleten and Licence in April 2009. Pool pump is rated at 230 v but does talk about P1 and P2 on the plate. The trip in the pool room which also has an air pump for the bio-digestor and pool lights is rated at 40 amp. My ICP has a rating on of 20amp and the three phases seem to split between the Casa, Casita and Pool.

However in January on a particular cold Sunday with the pool pump running aircon unit on for heat in the Kitchen, Fan Heater for the lounge and fan on the woodburner. My wife put the kettle on for tea the oven and the induction hob to heat dinner and the microwave to warm the plates. That was it the ICP tripped!

Fan Heater 3kw, kettle 3kw, pool pump 1.5 kw, oven say 5kw and the microwave, aircon, woodburner fan, induction hob say another 2 kw. So about 15kw.

Last edited by EsuriJohn; Feb 21st 2011 at 7:58 pm.
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Old Feb 21st 2011, 9:36 pm
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Default Re: Electricity Help

With your 60amp ICP, if you turn on all the appliances on one phase, it will trip at about 5kw because the individual fuses are only 20amp.

You need to check exactly how the phases are distributed.

Before I had the ICP fitted I could run the UF heating in all rooms at the same time with no problems and that is about 17kw. I have to be very selective now about what is switched on.

If there was a 3 phase ICP that measured the current across all three phases then there would be no problem but I don't think such a device exists.
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Old Feb 22nd 2011, 9:31 pm
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Default Re: Electricity Help

hi, quick question, im hoping to move to fuengirola, can anybody give me details of the company that supply's electicity please? been looking on the net and so far all the info i can find is very confusing.....i have been previously told that the prices are much the same as i would be paying now which would be around the £35 (not sure how much that is in euro's)
any help would be great
Thanks
Gem
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Old Feb 23rd 2011, 6:20 am
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Default Re: Electricity Help

Originally Posted by xgembeanx
hi, quick question, im hoping to move to fuengirola, can anybody give me details of the company that supply's electicity please? been looking on the net and so far all the info i can find is very confusing.....i have been previously told that the prices are much the same as i would be paying now which would be around the £35 (not sure how much that is in euro's)
any help would be great
Thanks
Gem
As you will be renting, you need not worry about finding a supplier as it should already have a supply already, unless of course you will be the first occupier, then that is a differen matter and whole new can of worms.

The cost of electricity of course depends on how much you use, gas cookers are common but if your place has electric cooker then, the average of 35 ish could be way off the mark, heating and aircon have to be takein into consideration.

I have no idea what our bills are but allowing for the exchange 35ish pounds, sounds very little to me.
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Old Feb 23rd 2011, 6:34 am
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Default Re: Electricity Help

Originally Posted by JLFS
As you will be renting, you need not worry about finding a supplier as it should already have a supply already, unless of course you will be the first occupier, then that is a differen matter and whole new can of worms.

The cost of electricity of course depends on how much you use, gas cookers are common but if your place has electric cooker then, the average of 35 ish could be way off the mark, heating and aircon have to be takein into consideration.

I have no idea what our bills are but allowing for the exchange 35ish pounds, sounds very little to me.
I have tenants in a 1-bed flat who are at work from 9-8 every week day. They have electric hot water, electric hob and electric oven. I would say that their bill is nearer 45 euros each month.
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Old Feb 23rd 2011, 6:40 am
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Default Re: Electricity Help

Originally Posted by snikpoh
I have tenants in a 1-bed flat who are at work from 9-8 every week day. They have electric hot water, electric hob and electric oven. I would say that their bill is nearer 45 euros each month.
And if there is a daughter or 2 that need hair straightners, that would skyrocket.
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Old Feb 23rd 2011, 2:48 pm
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Default Re: Electricity Help

i have my husband, myself and our toddler.
we have the fridge and a bed side clock on all the time.
the tv is for like maybe 10 hours intermittantly during the day and 2 computers as well.
we have butane for cooking and heating up water.
my last Iberdrola bill for a 2 months period was 650.00 euros.
HOW IN THE HELL.
a friend of ours who runs a bar pays less and he runs fridges, freezers and tvs all day.

I DONT GET IT
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Old Feb 23rd 2011, 3:14 pm
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Default Re: Electricity Help

Originally Posted by fadingstarlight
i have my husband, myself and our toddler.
we have the fridge and a bed side clock on all the time.
the tv is for like maybe 10 hours intermittantly during the day and 2 computers as well.
we have butane for cooking and heating up water.
my last Iberdrola bill for a 2 months period was 650.00 euros.
HOW IN THE HELL.
a friend of ours who runs a bar pays less and he runs fridges, freezers and tvs all day.

I DONT GET IT
That sounds as ridiculous as my bills often are. They are almost always wrong. And if you pay it, you'll have a hell of a time getting the money back.

First, CHECK YOUR METER. Always. If the reading on the bill is "estimated" or doesn't match the meter, go to the office and dispute it. Be sure to bring the latest meter reading(s) with you.

Second, if, after the previous exercise, you know and can prove it's an overcharge, and they already took the money through direct deposit, go to your bank and tell them to take it back. You have every legal right to do this (even if they send you threatening letters). This way, you can be assured that there won't be any excuses about refunds for the overcharges, since you'll have the money back already, and you can pay the correct amount when it's sorted.

Third, if this happens consistently, tell your bank to block further direct deposits, and before paying, check every factura for accuracy. Pay it only when you know it's right.

This is apparently very common thing in Spain (to overcharge). Virtually everyone I know has experienced it at some point, and for many like me, it's a monthly ritual.

Good Luck.

Last edited by amideislas; Feb 23rd 2011 at 3:26 pm.
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Old Feb 23rd 2011, 4:06 pm
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Default Re: Electricity Help

Originally Posted by amideislas
That sounds as ridiculous as my bills often are. They are almost always wrong. And if you pay it, you'll have a hell of a time getting the money back.

First, CHECK YOUR METER. Always. If the reading on the bill is "estimated" or doesn't match the meter, go to the office and dispute it. Be sure to bring the latest meter reading(s) with you.

Second, if, after the previous exercise, you know and can prove it's an overcharge, and they already took the money through direct deposit, go to your bank and tell them to take it back. You have every legal right to do this (even if they send you threatening letters). This way, you can be assured that there won't be any excuses about refunds for the overcharges, since you'll have the money back already, and you can pay the correct amount when it's sorted.

Third, if this happens consistently, tell your bank to block further direct deposits, and before paying, check every factura for accuracy. Pay it only when you know it's right.

This is apparently very common thing in Spain (to overcharge). Virtually everyone I know has experienced it at some point, and for many like me, it's a monthly ritual.

Good Luck.

Direct Debit seen it a couple of times and thought I'd just mention it.
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Old Feb 23rd 2011, 4:36 pm
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Default Re: Electricity Help

Originally Posted by amideislas
That sounds as ridiculous as my bills often are. They are almost always wrong. And if you pay it, you'll have a hell of a time getting the money back.

First, CHECK YOUR METER. Always. If the reading on the bill is "estimated" or doesn't match the meter, go to the office and dispute it. Be sure to bring the latest meter reading(s) with you.

Second, if, after the previous exercise, you know and can prove it's an overcharge, and they already took the money through direct deposit, go to your bank and tell them to take it back. You have every legal right to do this (even if they send you threatening letters). This way, you can be assured that there won't be any excuses about refunds for the overcharges, since you'll have the money back already, and you can pay the correct amount when it's sorted.

Third, if this happens consistently, tell your bank to block further direct deposits, and before paying, check every factura for accuracy. Pay it only when you know it's right.

This is apparently very common thing in Spain (to overcharge). Virtually everyone I know has experienced it at some point, and for many like me, it's a monthly ritual.

Good Luck.

Yes
You can get the money put back in your account, but I think that you only have about 15 days from the day it left your account. Best just to check and see though.
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Old Feb 23rd 2011, 6:07 pm
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Default Re: Electricity Help

Originally Posted by John & Kath
My Casa is new and received its Boleten and Licence in April 2009. Pool pump is rated at 230 v but does talk about P1 and P2 on the plate. The trip in the pool room which also has an air pump for the bio-digestor and pool lights is rated at 40 amp. My ICP has a rating on of 20amp and the three phases seem to split between the Casa, Casita and Pool.

However in January on a particular cold Sunday with the pool pump running aircon unit on for heat in the Kitchen, Fan Heater for the lounge and fan on the woodburner. My wife put the kettle on for tea the oven and the induction hob to heat dinner and the microwave to warm the plates. That was it the ICP tripped!

Fan Heater 3kw, kettle 3kw, pool pump 1.5 kw, oven say 5kw and the microwave, aircon, woodburner fan, induction hob say another 2 kw. So about 15kw.
I'm absolutely gobsmacked by the amount of power people are consuming! Electric this, electric that, huge consumption for kettle, hair straightners? WTF! Global warming may or may not be a myth, but get real people!

My family are not connected to mains electric, instead we use solar with a genny backup.
Our inverter is 1.5kw and this provides power for the entire house. We're considering getting a connection to the mains, but will only get the absolute minimum of 3.3kw. For us that will be a huge amount of power.

We don't live like hillbillys, we have a modern house with modern appliances. The kids watch tv and listen to their music. We iron clothes and have even have lights on at night!
Ok, we don't have a pool. We have a gas cooker and a gas fridge, gas/solar hot water. Wood burner for heating. Kettle is put on the gas hob.
Actually the main reason we are thinking of connecting to mains is because we are fed up of the gas fridge - no warning before it runs out, and then it's only when we've done a big shop and fill the fridge up that we realise it's gone out, then it takes a day or so to get back to temperature.

But we really will only be swapping the convenience of an electric fridge for a regular monthly electric bill. Is it really worth it? Hmm...not sure. Even on cloudy days we only use the genny for maybe an hour or so, just to top up the batteries.
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