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Your Place: Possible Causes of Surges in Electricity Use

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By Alan J. Heavens

“I’m an electrician, and over the years, I’ve gotten a fair number of calls from people who think there is something wrong with their electric meter, and in all that time, there was only one situation where I found a leak,” he says.

Every other time it was due to an electrical load in the house that the owner hadn’t considered, Edelberg adds.

Joe Riggins, an electrical engineer who lives outside Ithaca, N.Y., asks if the reader is sure she is looking at kilowatt hours?

“The rate can be more than twice that of a previous day resulting in a variation in cost,” he says.

John Walker spent many years working in customer service in the billing-inquiry area for a large utility company.

“This involved field trips to determine high usage to rule out over-readings, previous estimates,” he says, adding that “newer electronic meters rule out most of the old problems.”

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