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Economy 7 hours wrong, how to tell time on Horstmann timeswitch?

Discussion in 'Electrics UK' started by VarnishMarnish, 3 Jul 2021.

  1. VarnishMarnish

    VarnishMarnish

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    Hi,

    I recently had a fused spur plate replaced with a regular single switched socket, as the spur wasn't being used for anything (must have been an old storage heater which had since been removed). When the electrician first put it in it didn't actually work, and since he only came to replace a couple of sockets we just left it at that. But to my surprise, the socket actually started working later that evening at around 7:30pm - then switched back off the next morning.

    I did some googling around and quickly established this must be an Economy 7 socket that is only active for 7 hours, which means the socket is active between 7:30pm and 2:30am. All this time I thought my low rate was between 12am and 7am, so I had a look at the meter and while the Horstmann does show that the night rate comes on between those hours, I'm not sure how to tell the current time given how the socket came on at around 7:30pm, as opposed to am.

    Can someone let me know how to tell the current time? I have attached a photo that was taken at 12pm. Also, would it be possible at all to have the new socket switched over to the regular 24 hour circuit? Any help would be much appreciated!
     

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  3. AndyPRK

    AndyPRK

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    Current time is nearly 17:00

    that metal pointer at the bottom.


    Post a pic or your fuses boxes, and we can tell you it’s easy to make the socket 24 hr
     
  4. VarnishMarnish

    VarnishMarnish

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    Sounds like I need a few words with my electric supplier then! I would no doubt need to get the sparky in again since I'm actually renting.

    Here are my fuse boxes - I suppose the one on the left is the night rate circuit?
     

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  5. flameport

    flameport

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    If the circuit ends in the left unit it just needs moving to the right one, certainly possible.

    Do you actually have electric storage heaters? E7 only saves money if you use a substantial proportion of electricity overnight. Otherwise it can actually cost more than not having it.
     
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  6. SUNRAY

    SUNRAY

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    That is a very likely situation, however if the cheap rate is starting at 19:30... could be on a winner.
     
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  7. winston1

    winston1

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    They are not fuse boxes. They have no fuses in them. They are consumer units or distribution boxes.
     
  8. Canyer

    Canyer

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    With our E7 system the the digital meter is preprogrammed for the regional E7 timings and all the time switch does is power up the heaters and immersion via a contactor. In the OP’s case I wouldn’t be surprised if the smaller consumer unit isn’t using 4 1/2 hours of electricity @ the higher rate & 2 1/2 hours @ the lower rate rather than the full 7 hours @ the lower rate.
     
  9. Canyer

    Canyer

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    Totally agree with this, we used 65% of our electricity at the lower rate and still wasn’t economical, we’ve switched over to a flat rate and it works out £260 per year cheaper than the cheapest E7 tariff available.
     
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  11. VarnishMarnish

    VarnishMarnish

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    You're right - it does. I plugged a hair dryer in and the furthest MCB on the left powers the socket - I'm surprised the leccy never even noticed! So it would just be a matter of moving that to the blank plate on the right one?

    I don't have the storage heaters, they weren't there when I moved in. Instead there's two portable radiators (the landlords so not really mine) which I used with my own timer plugs, under the impression my night rate was 7-12... no wonder my energy bills were only getting worse.

    Not really, considering I power shower every morning and my desktop PC and monitors are on about 12 hours all day, on top of my immersion water heater coming on between 6-7am, again under impression of 7-12 but was being heated on the day rate all this time... argh!
     
  12. SUNRAY

    SUNRAY

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    And where does your meter get the signal from? If it's a meter anything like OP's it's the wire shown with a blue arrow:
    upload_2021-7-4_0-21-53.png
    In many E7 systems that is all the time switch or Teleswitch does and I've worked on a number where the wires shown with red and pink arrows don't even exist nor any off peak dedicated fuse box or fuses. Very recently I worked on a job where I moved the red wire into the henley tail splitter (white arrow) to move all of the dedicated off peak circuits onto 24/7 power.

    In this picture the meter is controlled by the time switch and assuming there is only one possible time setting in the timeswitch then the control signal and the off peak circuit have to be the same. IE off peak is 19:30 to 02:30 or thereabouts.
     
  13. Canyer

    Canyer

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    View attachment 238245
    There’s no signal as such, the meter is preprogrammed
    C14201D3-E4FA-4DBC-AF65-75539DAE8E5B.jpeg
     
    Last edited: 4 Jul 2021
  14. Canyer

    Canyer

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    That would have worked for me :) none of the faff setting timers to get the most saving out of off peak electricity.
     
  15. SUNRAY

    SUNRAY

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  16. Canyer

    Canyer

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    As far as I’m aware it’s not a smart meter? Why do you think it is?
     
  17. SUNRAY

    SUNRAY

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    It is possible to purchase 'Teleswitches' which are radio controlled devices to give you an off peak supply (assuming it's the same times as your smart meter). However the BBC have already stated the service will not be provided forever.
     
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