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New "Smart Meters" And Poor Customer Service
Posted by CO4 on 01/26/2009
TEXAS -- I currently have one of the new "smart meters" installed in my home. Over the last two billing cycles my electricity usage, according to the meter, more than doubled. During this time period I made no additions or changes in the way of appliances or heating / AC units that would explain the enormous load reported by my meter. I called TXU to request an inspection, and the representative did everything except admit that there might be a problem with my meter. I was quizzed about every appliance in my home, my current water heater and thermostat settings, etc - as if I am oblivious to factors that may effect my electricity usage. The rep suggested that I did not know how to read the meter correctly, although after a vague and confusing explanation, we agreed that I was reading the meter correctly. (By the way: I was going to post a link to the TXU website explaination of how to read your new "smart meter" but it turns out that no such instructions exist on the web - more outstanding customer service) The representative on the phone treated me as if she knew more about my home and electricity usage than I do. I was also informed that I would have to pay Oncor myself to have an inspection on the meter.

Finding this answer unacceptable I consulted my own electrician who gave me all the steps to shut off power entirely to my home, which I did. Turns out that even after shutting down each circuit breaker and the main breaker to the home the meter still gives a current load of 28.59 Kw (I was informed that this is enough of a load to adequately power four homes equal to the size of mine at the same time). So much for the "smart meter." Now, after informing TXU of this new information, I have to wait up to 5 days for an Oncor representative to inspect my meter. They made no effort to apologize for the way I was treated in the initial phone call, and I was told that I may have to pay an additional fee to have the technician inspect the meter. This situation was frustrating enough without the addition of poor customer service.

I honestly don't know if I will remain a TXU customer after this - I will update with the end result so that other consumers can see how TXU handled the situation.

----

Update: TXU sent out a service technician (from Oncor) to inspect the meter. I put in a specific request to be present when the tech was at my home (I gave the TXU phone rep two contact numbers), and what happened? Of course, I got no call. When I called TXU on the 5th day to see why I had not heard from the technician, I was informed that there had already been an inspection and that there was nothing wrong with the meter. I immediately asked to speak to a supervisor to request another inspection - one where I could supervise the technician and shut the power off in front of him to prove that the meter still shows a usage. Instead, after placing me on hold for an extended amount of time, the TXU phone rep offered to take $400 off of my current bill. Now, why would any company offer to cut the bill by more 60% if nothing was wrong with their equipment??? I immediately went outside to the meter only to find that now it is working properly. I now have no proof to show that my last months bill was due to equipment malfunction. This is the single most deceitful situation I have ever experienced from any company. I'm changing providers as soon as possible. Hope this post keeps some other person from signing up with TXU and experiencing a nightmare like mine.
     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2009-01-26:
One of co-workers in residency found out, through talking to his neighbors, that his power bill was 2x more than average. Turned out, the apartment complex had the communal washer/dryer hooked up to his meter. He found out by turning off the main switch in his apt. A few hours later, maintenance came by to see why the washer and dryer weren't working.
Posted by Lifemates on 2010-11-07:
These meters do not sound so smart after all
Posted by Julie on 2011-06-13:
the same thing happened to me. I live in Rockport also.
Posted by Deb on 2012-01-24:
Same thing here, and with several neighbors on our street. We're considering calling the utility commision. The price increase was almost $100.00 on all of our bills!
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TXU Energy Complaint
Posted by Texas instrument on 12/23/2009
DAKLLAS, TEXAS -- Wednesday, December 23, 2009


TXU executives enthusiastically embrace and TXU falsely claims, in violation of the Texas DTPA “Clear, straightforward terms of service with billing you can understand and trust” and “Responsive, knowledgeable customer care agents available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week”
This is a blatant lie, because I had a difficulty understanding, TXU’s foreign customer service representatives, lack of familiarity with the billings, and their ineffective responses to my inquiries.
My new electric bill this month went from $ 83.96 to a whopping $ 181.15 without any temperature settings changes and I was not even home for ten days of the month. I proceeded to dispute my bill in accordance with State and Federal laws including charges such as advanced meter surcharge and an Oncor rate change? Why Oncor I am with TXU?
So yesterday I tried to call customer service @ 972-791-2888 and for almost two hours their automatic answering service recycled my call, then after three or four cycles I had to redial the number never getting through.
Today 12/23/09 after trying again on my third attempt I got through to three (3) different customer service centers which were located in 1- Guatemala, 2- Manila, then # 3 located in El Salvador to my surprise I was told that there are no call centers located in the US and all TXU customer service operations are at overseas call centers.
The fourth agent told me he was in Guatemala. I asked him if he had anybody that could speak better English because his command of the English language was difficult to understand and had a strong accent and was told by him I should redial the phone number and or try 800-242-9113
After 5 attempts and still not getting anybody that could speak good English the agent told me that he was having a hard time understanding my accent. Then he told me that I could hang up and call again. I said no, I had been on the phone for about 2 hours and 45 minutes and if I called back I would only get someone else with an accent that I could not understand. He then hung up on me!
So I tried again and when I got to the Manila based service desk I told the lady there that I needed to speak with a manager and had hoped it would be an American she asked me the same questions again and told me I would be on hold 3-4 minutes. Guess what I was wrong, the Supervisor manager was also a foreigner and she wanted to know the details of my complaints and I told her the issues and that I wanted to speak to a US customer service person, to which she replied it will take 24 hours for that to happen, agreed and @ 15: 23: 22 we hung up and I am waiting.

What TXU executives who make these decisions do not realize is that Time is precious, and what customer wants to spend an inordinate amount of time in an often vain attempt to communicate with a company contact employee who is halfway around the world and cannot speak English effectively with having difficulty in navigating their electronic phone response systems, with excessive telephone hold times, and agents improperly trained to adequately handle service problems. It is easy to measure the savings TXU gets by farming out customer-service jobs to countries whose median income is an eighth of what it is in the U.S. to people that cannot speak our language. It is simply to say that working on the front lines of customer service means, first and foremost, being able to understand what the customer needs and then meeting those needs efficiently and TXU is showing profound disrespect for us the Texas consumer by violating their own statements about customer service and they do not understand that this practice does not help their reputation. I hope I will get my callback in the next twenty three hours.
My best advice to anyone thinking about using TXU is not to do it. They smack of false advertising and poor customer service. And I am not prejudiced but I feel that with a recession in progress in the US, with as many people out of jobs, we could and should open Customer Service up to those people here in the USA!


Cc: Texas A. G.

     
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Posted by goduke on 2009-12-23:
You guys voted to deregulate electricity because someone told you it was a good idea.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-12-23:
They're just saving money like all other companies with oversea call centers. Since the agent in Guatemala said he couldn't understand you, I was wondering if you speak with an accent?
Posted by texas instrument on 2009-12-23:
No I as an Attorney and being born in the US I speak and have good command of the english language.........Is saving money more important than putting our people to work not the people of Manila, etc? guess you must have voted for or are making your living outsourcing our country........
Posted by texas instrument on 2009-12-23:
Conversation with foreigners in far away places becomes an exercise in futility where neither side understands the other.
Posted by cedars on 2010-01-18:
I completely understand. I could barely understand them. Very frustrating and obvious they know nothing and don't care to learn.
Posted by Connoisseur on 2010-04-12:
Texas Instrument do you "tape" calls? DO SO. Then send it to the ATT GEN for violation of your consumer rights to have your concerns addressed appropriately by TXU. As a lawyer how about SUING TXU for monetary damage that is equivalent to the time they consume from you....which in your case is TIME=MONEY. GO ON DO IT FOR ALL OF US.............WHO ARE SICK OF FOREIGNERS WHO CANNOT UNDERSTAND US.
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TXU Places an X on You as a Customer
Posted by Poetic on 06/20/2012
DALLAS, TEXAS -- I view my previous bill with TXU and the KWH 12.5 and I knew if I called them, I would not grant the opportunity to a lower rate. My contract had expired moreover, I did not want to renew with them. I contact other providers and receive a rate of 8.6 without the 150.00 enrollment fee. I was perfectly happy with this rate and would not have considered anymore offer from another company.

On June 6, I receive a call from a TXU representative stating my KWH rate of 5.4 if I enroll within TXU's Plan - Residential Choice 12. On first, I was very concerned about the rate and asked three times to verify the rate. I asked her for a moment while I obtain a pen and paper to write down all the information given me.

I knew her name and three times, she quoted to 5.4 KWH rate. She explains it was special offer for maintaining customers. I was leery about the enrollment, but decideed to save money this summer. She stated the enrollment within the Residential Choice 12 program would allow for the 5.4 rate. After the conversation had ended, I immediately retrieved my account to check things out for myself. My account rate of was enrolling for 9.8. When I saw this I went through the roof and called them immediately, first speaking to a representative with a attitude that would make anyone get on a plane and fly to Dallas and smack her between her pearly whites.

She made the comment stating I would have to pay the cancellation fee of $150 if I cancel the account. Under the circumstances, I am receiving unprofessional treatment, especially when TXU has contact me to maintain my business. At this point, the conversation was not getting anywhere, and I asked to speak to a supervisor. I was transferred to a supervisor. I specially asked if she was with the Customer Retention Department. Her response was she was a Supervisor and we agreed that I would not be charged $150 cancellation fee. I advise I would pay my final payment and discontinue service with TXU. I advise the supervisor of remarks from representatives regarding my account.

I also mentioned I was misinformed in addition, training on how to overcome objections is necessary. Again another failure of customer service, representing a huge corporation. I think the way customer service is being handle today I would rather deal with a computer system-taking bids instead of dealing with incompetent and unprofessional representatives
     
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TXU Beware They Can Ruin Your Credit
Posted by Njtx19 on 05/18/2012
HOUSTON, TEXAS -- 2007 We terminated service with txu electric and sent in our final payment. We were never contacted by them again.

2010 They offered a good electric rate and we contacted them for service. We received a letter from them rejecting us. We have never had a credit rejection in 40 years and were shocked. We always pay extra on our electricity to avoid owing a large amount in December.

I made 5 or more calls to their foreign customer service office trying to get information. I received answers like we don't know or they hung up on me. I was also left hanging for a supervisor why they laughed and talked in their language and after 10 min I hung up. I was told they had no home office by their customer service. Finally thru the internet I found their home offices in the usa.

They claimed we owed a balance of $400. I said we sent you are last payment in 2007 and never received any bills or calls stating we owe money. They asked me if I had the checks. I did have the last one stating final payment, but that was not good enough. They wanted all of the 2007 ones which I no longer had.

This is the first business I have ever heard of who fails to send bills or notify a customer about (alleged) money owed. I asked why if this was a genuine debt they did not do this. They had no answer and we did not trust them and felt their records were incorrect.

Txu reported to all the credit bureaus that they wrote off a bad debt in 2010 never mentioning that this alleged bill was a 2007. This has
brought down our credit ratings and we can not resolve it. Credit bureaus have not interest in the individual problem.

To say we detest txu is an understatement. Beware***



     
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Posted by trmn8r on 2012-05-18:
I believe the procedure you need to follow is to dispute this with the credit reporting agency. Then they would investigate, *using information you provide*, and contact txu.

If you don't have proof of all your payments, this may be difficult. Good luck.
http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/credit/cre21.shtm
Posted by clutzycook on 2012-05-18:
You may be able to get copies of your cancelled checks from your bank.
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No Soliciting
Posted by Upset Lady on 05/01/2010
We live in an No Soliciting Neighborhood. The TXU people Keep Coming around knocking on my door and ringing the bell. I tried to tell the young man that I'm not interested but he keeps coming around. If I ever do busines with this company it won't be with a Door to door sales person I'll use my computer. My husband and I are ill and we don't won't to be bothered with Sales people, even if it's FREE! I've stopped answering the door, but he does not take the hint.
     
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Posted by i_am_canadian on 2010-05-01:
I would tell them point blank that no solicitation is permitted on your private property, and if this continues you will notify the police and press trespassing charges. Hopefully then they would take the hint.
Posted by Skye on 2010-05-01:
That's very annoying. How about if you place a small sign, next to your door bell, or directly on your door, that says:

NO TRESPASSING

NO SOLICITING

Posted by i_am_canadian on 2010-05-01:
It also sounds like your neighborhood is governed in part by a Homeowner's or Condo Association, perhaps you need to address this issue collectively with other members. Because chances are, your'e not the only one who they're bothering.
Posted by spiderman2 on 2010-05-01:
I wonder if it would help if you called TXU and asked them to stop coming to your house and if they continue, you will call the police because they are harrassing you. We had that problem with a religious group...they showed up every Sunday morning at about 8 and rang the doorbell. I will admit, I lost my patience with them after a few morning when they woke us all up (including a baby!) and I'm sure they are STILL praying for my soul but they stopped!!!
Posted by PepperElf on 2010-05-01:
i'd say ask their names... and then call the police since they've been told to stay away


tho the evil side of me says...
it's texas. it's your house. tell them you're too busy cleaning your rifles.
Posted by Disaster Worker on 2010-05-02:
Skye, you obviously don't deal with TXU in your area! I have the same problem with TXU as the poster. I have a "no soliciting" sign (also a "no Jehovah Witness" sign) posted clearly by my doorbell. The TXU rep always says, "I'm not soliciting. I'm here with the electric company." Then they get really huffy when I tell them I got rid of TXU 6 years ago and to get off my property. Either TXU reps think they are incredibly special and can ring any doorbell they want, or they are incredibly dumb and uneducated and do not know the definition of "soliciting".
Posted by Nohandle on 2010-05-02:
Upset Lady, I can appreciate where you are coming from. I have a neighbor two houses down who has really had a time with her cancer treatments. Her husband put a notice on their front porch "Please respect our privacy and do not ring the doorbell". Did that stop it? NO. Obviously some idiots cannot read or feel the notice does not apply to them.
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TXU are a bunch of crooks !!!!!!!!!!
Posted by Dr.dr on 04/15/2010
ARLINGTON, TEXAS --
In my entire life, I have never seen such BS and double talk from an electric company. I've lived all over the world, so I know what I'm talking about.

They LIE, CHEAT, and I swear, double bill their customers.

I have spoken to the stupidest people ever to have inhabited earth on their so-called customer service lines.

Please, if you're a customer switch services, they're cheating you!!!!!!!!!!

Call them and see if you are able to get a SIMPLE, STRAIGHT ANSWER FROM THEM. It won't happen, I promise.
     
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Posted by goduke on 2010-04-15:
I remember dealing with them. I always called a second time to double check that they did what they said they were going to do. Often they didn't. I always had the impression the person on the phone was brand new and had no clue how to use the system they were using.
Posted by Disaster Worker on 2010-04-15:
I agree. I'm over one town from you, and I remember when they were honest. I changed to another provider years ago and have never regretted it. My bills are much lower.
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Customer Service at TXU is ridiculously bad! Includes contact info for escalations
Posted by TXUhater on 03/23/2010
TEXAS -- Read to the end for contact info to get your issues resolved...but their customer service is still just awful!

-Well my journey through the TXU customer service debacle started some 4 yrs ago when I moved to Rockport TX.
After 2.5 months in my new place I got a phone call from their customer service asking where I would like my bill sent. I suggested it go the same place they were delivering the power!
The bill arrives with, you guessed it, LATE FEES. So I called to have them removed. After a couple hours on the phone and speaking to supervisors, they agreed to remove 1. Turns out, according to them, it is my responsibility to chase down my bill. I kept fighting it and ultimately got them waved and a $50 credit for my time. But after 8 hrs on the phone with these fools, I was not liking my hourly wage in my new unwanted role as customer service consultant. So I pressed the issue. And I pressed. Well let me assure you you will NEVER get satisfaction calling their customer service toll free line. So I finally looked up their corporate hdqs online and called their directly. I finally found a guy who cared. They sent me a check for my time and suffering. $200!
But it was not over. I have since had issues getting on their website which i8t only took them like a yr to fix. Stuck on the phone with all sorts of people on that go round. They are mostly not helpful and mostly incompetent.
Last week was the final straw. I called to find out about a $5.95 monthly fee. I got 2 different answers from the same CSR. He was basically just talking out his ass. Probably made it up. Then I made the mistake of asking him what I paid per kwh last month. OMG! He couldn't tell me. He kept talking about the energy multiplier and told me it was 4 cents. I finally gave up on him and divided the $ by the kw and got just under 12 cents. I asked for his supervisor. I had been on the phone at least 25 min by then. seriously. I asked her about the monthly fee. Got answer number 3. I am now demanding an explanation as to why it is ok for their customer service reps to be unable to answer the most rudimentary billing questions. Remember, we are approaching the 1 hr mark at this point.
They are on my clock! This woman kept interrupting and explaining to me how truly competent and excellent their staff is. I had had enough so she transfers me to AMerica!! The escalation dept at the CEO's office. This gal quickly tells me where to find the cost of a kwh and and gives me answer number 4 about the monthly charge. I complain about how their customer service dept, although admittedly bad now for yrs is still as bad. She told me they have weekly meetings and they talk about fixing it at each meeting. TALK IS CHEAP huh?
Well that was 1.5 hrs of my life I will never get back and so I start climbing the ladder to get compensation for my time. I sent emails which no one will follow up on when they sya they will and this time around they REFUSE to give me a credit for my time pain and suffering. The conclusion I am drawing is that they are very sorry, but they are now ok with stealing my time in spite of their admissions that their CSR that started this whole debacle sucks so bad they yanked him off the phone to train him.
Touch crap for me. And I got that during a TWENTY minute call with their COO. I have had it. I sent their CEO an email and his reply was to have his lackey COO call me to placate me with an official apology from way up the food chain. Money talks and bullcrap walks. I am done. As I told the COO I could probably drag their butts into small claims court and find a very sympathetic jury, but why waste more time. I see I am in good company here!

Here is some helpful information. There is a customer service escalation dept. The director is Mahesh at 972.868.8287 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              972.868.8287      end_of_the_skype_highlighting. Please call him and give him your feedback. He is laboring under the false belief there is a high percentage of customer satisfaction among those dealing with the customer service dept.
One of his people in the escalation dept is
Margaret Pirtle
mpirtle@txu.com
TXU Energy

Manager - Office of the CEO

Office: (972) 868-8287

When all else fails, you can email the CEO directly at jim.burke@txu.com
He seems to think things are just peachy as well. He thinks it isn't broken!! LMAO
     
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TXU Cut off before first bill
Posted by DallasJ on 01/20/2010
After 2 weeks of using TXU my electricity was cut off before the first bill even arrived!
I signed up for TXU electric, and my credit approved me for a $150 credit gift of service for signing up with them. The terms were $150 of service for free, $0 deposit depending on credit (which the website agreed after entering my social, and having to call to verify over the phone the representative said no deposit, and $0 installation fee. As I was young (20 yrs old my credit was impt to me.) after 2 weeks of having electricity I come home from work and there is no electricty! I was outraged and called TXU immediately, they said I failed to pay my first bill. I informed them I had only had their service less than 2 weeks and did not receive a bill. the man continued by saying I never paid my $300 deposit and that is my balance! (why would they hook up the service before the deposit I asked LOL)
I told the man I have every email and screenshots and the saved html pages from the website and had the phone conversations recorded to PROVE that I was not lying. thats the FIRST time I was hung up on.
I recorded every conversation on the phone and had all my paperwork bc I would rather take them to court than let them take advantage of me.
eventually one of these people admitted TXU was wrong but they refused to reinstate my service. TXU told me I would have to pay the $300 deposit, a fee for have service disconnected and another fee for having service continued (totaling around $400 then I could resume service within 2 DAYS of paying that!)
even with all the evidence I had I would have to miss work to go to court and so I sent the deposit and told them NOT to resume my service and if I did not have my deposit back within the 2 weeks that was agreed upon I would go to court. and that is only half of the mess.
Immediately after getting off the phone with TXU I called Reliant energy and had them hook up service within the hour. its been 2 years now and I have been happy with Reliant but TXU will NEVER get a dime from me or my family EVER. Till this day I still keep any and all copies of agreements and record every conversation with ANY company because next time I won't be a 20 yr old kid that is too busy working 60 hour weeks and afraid to lose money for missing work for court. bottom line TXU are liars that try to take advantage of people and I will always tell anyone to never use TXU
     
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Lies and overcharging-nothing but theft
Posted by Cedars on 01/18/2010
I complained about the bill being way too high for December as I have lived here 28 years. They told me the bill was right and that I had a new advanced meter that could be read with a computer. That was lie. I came home and read the old meter with the dials and called them back today. They then denied the conversation on Jan 14 about the new meter. The guy told me they could read it with binoculars after I informed him my yard has no access due to a pool. Right. So maybe it has never been read. I told him I read the meter and it would mean I had only used 385 units of power since January 4 (their last reading) He then told me I don't know how to read a meter. Really, I guess being Phi Beta Kappa and an honors grad means I am an idiot. He kept telling me it was correct. Well, in three hours a guy shows up to install a new meter. I took down his truck number and license number. Let's see them deny this. Was this a coincidence? I think not. I filed a complaint with the PUC but I am sure I will get a nice form letter back. TXU is crooked as the day is long. I will switch back to Reliant. I also had the highest summer bills in 28 years and have a new air conditioner. I highly doubt they have ever read the meter in all the time I have had this joke of a company. (one year)
     
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Posted by goduke on 2010-01-18:
Aren't you required by Texas law to give them access to read the meter?
Posted by PepperElf on 2010-01-18:
this is why i've decided to not switch power companies, despite claims of lower bills

i have a feeling that if i switch it'll just end up being more of a pain than keeping my current company. besides my bills aren't that bad.
Posted by Nohandle on 2010-01-18:
So which one was it Cedars? Your meter was read by a computer or some character looked at it with a pair of binoculars? Mighty fancy equipment in your area from the sound of it from your company. Around here a meter reader actually comes into your yard or in some cases, a different company, the customer reads the meter and goes to the website to key in the reading.
Posted by redmx3racer on 2010-01-18:
Trying not to be a wiseguy and comment that I knew many a frat boy in college who could barely read a book let alone a meter..oops.
Posted by Nohandle on 2010-01-18:
Phi Beta Kappa is not a social fraternity, rather a scholastic fraternity. I still think the two answers from the utility company to be a bit hilarious. Come on TXU, which one is it?
Posted by cedars on 2010-01-18:
Phi Beta Kappa means a person had straight As in College. It is an honor society.
Posted by Nohandle on 2010-01-18:
Well Cedars, did you call TXU and tell them to buy those so called computerized meter readers with binoculars a new set? It appears what they have don't appear to work. I did at one time have my meter replaced because in comparison to others in the neighborhood my utility bill was way out of line. No error was ever acknowledged but I did receive a new meter and the bill went down. My goodness imagine that.
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TXU Unnecessary Disconnection
Posted by Steve123 on 09/01/2009
I have been a TXU customer for one and half years. Never missed a payment. Today I got a call from the guy that cleans the backyard pool about power being off in my house. I called TXU and asked what's going on. I was told I did not pay my bill in full and they disconnected my service. I was driving and did not have access to bills and payments. So, I went ahead and made payment in full on my cc. The representative that took the payment told me they would restore power by midnight. Just to be sure asked to speak with a supervisor - she told me it would not be restored until tomorrow. It's about 100 degrees where we live and TXU does not care. They have access to my phone and e-mail - they could have easily given me a heads up before taking the extreme measure of disconnecting power. I pay about $1200/month during summer. Tomorrow we need to throw out about $1000 worth of stuff from the freezer/refrigerator. I came home and saw my dog very uncomfortable and possibly dehydrated now that's very upsetting. I will talk to my state representatives about re-regulating the industry.
     
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Posted by goduke on 2009-09-01:
I thought texas had regs that they couldn't disconnect during a heat advisory.
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
I would think that's probably the case. Just like in this frozen hellhole, they can't turn off your heat in winter.
Posted by madconsumer on 2009-09-01:
1200$ per month?? ouch!

goduke, it is pst that time frame. that is june, july, august. september is open season.
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
1200 dollars a month is a massive amount, even with an air conditioner running non stop. I don't want to speculate on what other activities this person may be engaged in which would raise it to such proportions.
Posted by spiderman2 on 2009-09-01:
I don't think that any utility can disconnect you out of the blue. They need to send you notices. Its not their fault if you read your mail.
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
I believe (here anyway) they can disconnect without notice if they have reason to believe that such excessive power consumption is related to an illegal activity such as a marijuna grow-op. But I'm not sure if such a rule exists in Texas and even if it was the reason, the police should have become involved long before now.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-01:
Your a goner here. If your power gets turned of during the summer.
Posted by madconsumer on 2009-09-01:
hot tub, pool, water falls, atic fan ..........
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
I know but even with all those appliances, 1200 dollars? I'm unfamiliar with hydro rates in that country, but for someone to be spending that kind of money per month sounds awfully fishy to me.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-01:
If this happened to me, I would stay in a hotel for the night. Why suffer? Since there is nothing you can do at this point, you should think about your family (and dog's) health and get out of the heat.

When you're driving, you can still access your bills on-line with a laptop and wi-fi. Many restaurants/coffee shops have this service for free. Compared to the days of old, keeping up is pretty easy now.

Good luck. Hope your power goes back on as promised.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-01:
Kia, best answer!

Canadian, you are making a lot of assumptions there. Most of your comments on posts automatically assume the worst in people, and in this case you are suggesting illegal activities. That's not right.

Texas power companies are not regulated. A friend of mine in Texas has a 650 square foot apartment and his electricity runs a minimum of $400 per month in the summer. If the OP owns a house, runs the air, and as he stated has pool, $1200 doesn't surprise me in the least.
Posted by madconsumer on 2009-09-01:
also the rates in texas are between 10 cents and 22 cents per kilo watts hour.

to the poster, how many kilo watts hours do you use per month?
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
Then you folks must have astronomically high hydro rates, I apologize. I pay 600 dollars a month for the same sized apartment, including hydro and all other utilities. 1200 dollars is my approximate monthly income, and anyone who spends that in this province would automatically start ringing some alarm bells with Ontario Hydro.
Posted by madconsumer on 2009-09-01:
"1200 dollars is my approximate monthly income."

ouch!
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-01:
IF I had to pay that kind of money for utilities. I'd be broke like a joke. You need to be rich to afford to pay that. I pay around 80 to 100 bucks a month. I turn of things I dont use.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-01:
Mad, The cost of living in Canada is probably way laid back then it is here in the us. The average Joe there can survive fine on it.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-01:
Rents, taxes, utilities, etc. are not always be comparable from from state to state, or in this case from country to country.
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
I do just fine on that, and most people around here don't earn much more than I do. It's better than welfare, which for a single person equals 572 dollars a month.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-01:
With inflation, and all this government spending. Just imagine how much things will cost in the future yikes.
Posted by *Brenda* on 2009-09-01:
Wowzas I have a 1700 sq foot house (all electric) and my electric bills are $120.00. That's with the AC on 67 all the time.
Posted by old fart on 2009-09-01:
I live in a 950 sq.foot mobile home and last month's bill was 68 dollars including air...
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
John, incomparable would be an understatement. I had no idea your basic cost of living was so high.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-01:
Canadian, why don’t you move here to our fine country. And try to survive on 1200 a month.
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
No thanks, although I'm sure a lot of people pull it off somehow. I'll stick with this frozen hellhole for a little while longer.
Posted by old fart on 2009-09-01:
What keeps you there..? family? It sure can't be all the loot you're raking in...!
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
This a very beautiful country, when it's not under 6 feet of snow. I feel safe walking down the street, I can earn a comfortable living and if I get sick, I don't have to go into debt for the rest of my life in order to pay for treatment.
Posted by old fart on 2009-09-01:
I have been to Winnipeg Manitoba and Windsor Ontario... both places are cosmopolitan and pleasant...I could have lived there when I was younger but 6 feet of snow makes Michigan look like a tropical paradise...
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
Southern Ontario around the shores of Georgian Bay is known commonly as the Snowbelt region, because of the tons of white crap that get dumped here every winter. I've only ever lived in Owen Sound (directly on Georgian Bay), but not every city gets hammered with snow. Live in Vancouver, you get to deal with rain for 360 days a year. Or Northern Ontario/Manitoba, where temperatures can dip to -45 in January.
Nonetheless this place is home to me, even with its inhospitable climate. I wouldn't trade it for all the Texas heatwaves in the world.
Posted by old fart on 2009-09-01:
If I were 30 years younger I'd move back to Toms River New Jersey in a heartbeat..50 miles from New york city, 50 miles from Philadelphia and 50 miles from Atlantic city... the center of the universe..

I had more fun there and made more money than anywhere else in my life...
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
Everyone has a place they'll always call home :)
Posted by old fart on 2009-09-01:
I was born and raised in Saginaw, but I consider NJ my home...
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
I would eventually like to go a little farther west to Manitoba. Stake out a nice farm on the Southern Plains, just sit and listen to the silence. A long way off, but with any luck that's where you'll find me until the end of my days.
Posted by old fart on 2009-09-01:
Winnipeg is a cool as heck city....
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
It is, in more than one respect :)
Posted by old fart on 2009-09-01:
-50 degree winters make it so...
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
Yep, the flagpole theory definitely applies there. I strongly suggest you don't put it in to practice, :lol:.
Posted by old fart on 2009-09-01:
never lick a pump handle in Winnipeg...LOL
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-01:
When I was in elementary school, someone convinced a little Down's Syndrome kid to put his tongue on a metal drinking fountain in the middle of winter. They wound up having to basically peel him off, a piece of his tongue got left behind. The poor kid, whoever did that to him should have got their ass kicked.
Posted by old fart on 2009-09-01:
The difference between -30 and -50 degrees is academic...
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