by Venus Zoleta, on category "Personal Finance"
June 5, 2019
Don’t you just hate getting shocked by how much your electricity bill has increased compared to the previous months?
If you hate surprises like that, then you have to prepare yourself and, of course, your budget for what’s to come. Before your next Meralco bill arrives, know how much you’ll pay for your electric consumption for the month.
Another benefit of doing a Meralco bill computation in advance is it enables you to determine which of your appliances and devices consume too much electricity and cause your Meralco bill to go up. In doing so, you can adjust how you use these power-hungry devices to lower your monthly electric bill.
Here’s a simple guide to computing your electric bill.
Your electric meter plays a critical role in Meralco bill computation. Meralco uses your meter readings for the past month and present month to determine your total electricity usage in kilowatt per hour (kWh), which is the basis for computing your monthly bill.
Why bother reading your meter yourself? Even if Meralco has trained meter readers who can do the job accurately, being able to read your electric meter lets you keep track of your power consumption to ensure that your household isn’t consuming too much electricity.
If your electric meter has a small digital screen display, finding out your electricity consumption is pretty simple and straightforward. Just read the numbers from left to right.
You have an electromechanical meter if it has four dials instead of a digital numerical display. It looks more complicated than a digital meter because its dials move in opposite directions (two moving clockwise and the other two moving counter-clockwise). But it’s actually easy to read. Simply take note of the number that each dial is pointing at, beginning from the rightmost dial to the leftmost dial.
Record your reading this month and subtract it from your reading for the following month. The resulting kWh may not match the actual kWh reflected on your next Meralco bill (as Meralco’s meter reading date may be different from yours), but it at least gives you an estimate of your monthly power consumption.
Many different factors affect electricity prices, and they change from time to time. Also, the monthly bill consists of several electricity charges that Meralco calculates using various percentages. Meralco bill computation is too complicated for an average consumer to comprehend.
So if you’re trying to figure out how to compute your Meralco bill, know that it’s impossible to do on your own. You won’t know in advance the exact amount to pay for a particular month until your bill arrives.
However, if you’re aiming to save on your electric bill, you can compute the cost of using each appliance and electronic device in your home.
Follow these steps to manually estimate the electricity consumption of a specific device:
List down the monthly electricity usage of your appliances and devices and rank them from highest to lowest. This will let you know which ones consume the most electricity and should be used less and unplugged more often.
The formula discussed above is a just simplified approach to estimating your monthly electricity consumption. If you want to know the cost of using your home appliances and devices, use an online calculator that will compute it for you. You may use either the Meralco Appliance Calculator or Wattmatters Calculator.
The best way to compute your Meralco bill is to use the power distributor’s appliance calculator, which is currently available on the Meralco Mobile app only. The app can be downloaded on iOS and Android devices.
You may access the Meralco Appliance Calculator without having to register for an account or logging in (if you already have an account).
After installing the mobile app, you can start computing the electricity cost of your appliances. Here’s how:
Using the Meralco Mobile app, you can compute only for one appliance at a time. You have to repeat the entire procedure if you want to compute your electricity cost for other appliances.
A project by the Department of Energy that promotes energy efficiency, Wattmatters.org.ph has an online calculator that lets you find out how much each of your appliance contributes to your monthly Meralco bill.
Unlike the Meralco Appliance Calculator, the Wattmatter Calculator allows computing for two or more appliances simultaneously to get your total monthly bill.
Here are the steps to compute your Meralco bill using the Wattmatters calculator:
Just like paying for your Meralco bill, computing it in advance can be somewhat painful but necessary to ensure that your household electricity consumption is under control and that you save money on your next bill.