Gas customer slams Npower over billing


An angry gas customer has accused a utilities company of misleading customers over its prices.

Ian Simpson of Gamlingay says Npower has constantly mischarged him for his gas and has not been consistent with its pricing.

Ian, 66, says he has now switched his supply to another provider after six months of complaints and confusion with Npower.

He said: “It started in June last year when my previous oil boiler was on its last legs so I decided to switch over to gas and install a new one.

“I have had my electricity from Npower before so it seemed like the obvious decision to get my gas from them as well.”

A direct debit was set up for Ian, of Fairfield, which seemed straightforward at first.

But then the problems started.

Ian said: “I switched over on June 19 but then when a bill arrived later it transpired that they had been charging me since June 1.”

Npower then started sending Ian confusing letters that stated that the direct debit would be reduced – only to quickly put it back up again.

He said: “In November they wrote to me to say that I was £89 in credit on my account and that my direct debit would be reduced to £5 a month.

“But then only a matter of weeks later they send me another letter to say that I had somehow ended up in debt to them to the tune of £190, and that it would be going up again.”

After some long phone calls to the customer services department a manager later admitted to Ian that there was a major problem with the computer systems that process accounts.

Ian said: “He apologised and said that they were experiencing ongoing problems, but my concern is that there are customers out there who are being charged a lot more than they should be paying.

“There are a lot of elderly people, particularly, who have to be very careful with their heating as they cannot afford to pay much, and the last thing they need is incorrect billing.”

Ian is particularly concerned about the discrepancies that he says often exist between the letters and bills.

He added: “Often they will bear little correlation with each other, which is a worry as some elderly people especially may not look at their bills in a lot of detail.”

An Npower spokesman said: “I would like to apologise to Mr Simpson for the level of service he has received.

“We are working really hard to resolve Mr Simpson’s billing queries as quickly as possible and we will be keeping him updated on the progress.”