Electricity Saving Tips For Homes And Offices

Know Your Electricity Bill

By on March 6, 2014

It is very important to understand the electricity bill and it’s components to make plans for energy savings. Our electricity bills have quite a lot of information to give us a good insight to our electricity consumption patterns. A good understanding of various components can help one plan for money saving exercise. In this article, we will discuss various sections/information on electricity bills that are important: 

Electricity Bill
  • Tariff / Category: Tariff and Category determine the rate structure applicable on the bill. Typical tariff codes start with LT (Low Tension) or HT (High Tension). LT codes are typically used for residential connections and small offices . HT codes are typically used for bigger industries and complexes. Category in the bill determines if the connection is residential, commercial or industrial. Different rates/slabs are applicable for different tariff codes and thus it is important to validate that the right tariff code is applied on the electricity bill. This information is available on bill header as shown below:bill header
  • Type of Supply & Connected Load: Connected Load is the total pool of supply that is given to a meter. This is calculated in kW (or Killo-Watts). This is the total peak kW given to a meter based on the appliances connected to the meter. This is not your actual energy consumption and only impacts fixed charges on your electicity bill. Connected load also determines if the connection will be a single phase or three phase. If load is more then supply is three phase and thus fixed charges are more. Utilities also charge more fixed cost for incremental connected load. Below is a screenshot from Reliance Energy bill in Mumbai:connected load
  • Units Consumed: Units consumed is the number of kWh (Killo-Watt-Hour) consumed in a month. 1 kWh is equivalent to keeping a 100 Watts bulb on for 10 hrs. This information is calculated by finding the difference between meter readings of two consecutive months. This is the total monthly consumption by all the appliances that are connected to the meter. This is the value that needs to come down in order to reduce the electricity bill. An observation of consumption history can give an indictor of the appliances having higher electricity consumption (typically Air Conditioners increase consumption in summers).units consumed
  • Tariff Structure: It is very important to note the tariff structure on your bill, as this is the best indicator of how the bill can be reduced. Typically for residential and SMB commercial connections, the structure is slab based (unlike industrial connections where units are charged at a high flat rate). The intent behind the slab structure is to reward low energy users and charge extra to those who have high consumption. The slabs are based on the “Units Consumed” that we discussed earlier. As the number of units consumed increase, energy charge changes and also the fixed costs associated with the slab increases. Below is a sample of tariff structure from a bill from Mumbai:tariff structure updated
  • Fuel Adjustment Charge (FAC): As you can see in the tariff structure above, there is a FAC rate applicable at each slab. This is the additional cost of power incurred due to fuel price increments during a year. Fuel in most cases is Coal. As per a study, after 2011, the production rates of coal will decline, reaching 1990 levels by the year 2037, and reaching 50% of the peak value in the year 2047. So invariably FAC will increase till alternate sources of electricity are not developed to a state where they can generate electricity that cheap. So electricity costs will surely increase in future.

Understanding the elements of electricity bill mentioned above can help you understand your electricity bill and will also help you to plan your electricty consumption reduction project. Two things that should be targeted are: Units Consumed and Connected Load. Reduce the two and your electricity bill will surely come down.inforgaphic17

Have question, doubt or comment? Leave a message (please submit once as the comments take time to appear online)

There Are 14 Comments

  1. shamsadali b. saiyad says:

    how to check online status of GUJARAT ‘ kosamba in d.g.v.c.l electric bill,pls help me


  2. manoj kumar thakur says:

    how to check online status of bihar electric bill,pls help me

  3. Safia khanam says:

    Hi Sir,
    how to check online status of Hyderabad electric city bill pls help me

  4. sanchita says:

    Sir,Is online electricity payment available for Ghola Sodepur Kolkata?

  5. ritesh mishra says:

    how to check online status of bihar electric bill pls help me

    • subodha parida says:

      first u go to internet type http://www.cesc.co.in then go to your state wise that is click (Kolkata electricity bill status) after that click payment electricity bill then put your consumer no, mobile no, Mail Id, then type under the given code then submit,

    • bibha sharma says:

      how to check online status of bihar electric bill,please help me.

  6. mahesh says:


    i am mahesh, Is there any possibility to find the connected load of a house based on the electricity bill units..?

    • Abhishek Jain says:

      Hi Mahesh,

      Electricity bill units is the actual energy consumption. Where was connected load is the maximum instantaneous power that can be withdrawn. To give you a analogy: connected load is similar to maximum speed at which a car can run (the car may or may not run at that speed), whereas units is similar to actual distance covered (in a certain time). Hope this helps.


  7. Vineet B says:

    Hi Abhishek, referring to the west bengal power distribution company’s bills, the fixed charges you refer above is part of the meter rentals. The fixed charges for residential consumers are Rs 5/KVA/mon which is basically the demand charges and the distribution infrastructure cost to deliver the electricity to the consumer for his peak demand. I’ve a small project running to monitor the electricity consumption/usage in real-time on the cloud. For the same I’m seeking to understand how WBSEDCL calculates the fixed demand charges, i.e. how does it come to the KVA figure for the month, any insight from your side would be appreciable.

    As per my understanding, there are two ways to calculate the KVA, some meters calculate it every 15 or 30 mins to see your peak demand and sets it for the month. Other method is using the KwH from the bill.

    KW = KHW/h

    KVA = KW/PF

    for example you have 300 units for the month on your bill this the KW will be 300/(30*24) = .417

    thus KVA = .417/ .85 (power factor as assumed by WBSEDCL in the absence of a measure) = .4905

    Thus as per the bill its Rs 5 per .4905, how does it calculate the total KVA load for the billing cycle to come to a month cost is what I seek.

    • Abhishek Jain says:

      Hi Vineet,

      You can check West Bengal’s Tariff order to get more details. It is available at http://www.wberc.org/wberc/tariff/wbsedcl/Tariff/ordnpet2001/index.htm. In general, power factor at most residential houses should be close to 1 as there is not a huge inductive load in any house. In most states the fixed charges are calculated per KW of connected load and there are no demand charges for residential connections. Also for commercial connections, the demand charges are based on the peak demand and it does not have any relation with the units or KWH consumed per month. So I do not think you can calculate it using the monthly units consumed. Connected load or peak demand is mentioned on the electricity bills and that is the best source for you to get that value. Hope this helps.


  8. punam kothari says:

    hey i hv to pay online bill dn wt to do . n hw to pay

    • Abhishek Jain says:

      Ms Kothari,
      You can try our link http://www.bijlibachao.in/Electricity-Bill/pay-your-electricity-bills-online.html to find online bill payment for the distribution company in your area.