FURIOUS E.on pre-payment meter customers say they've been left without electricity and heating following an online top-up glitch.
The problems have seen thousands of E.on customers complain about delays in online and app payments reaching their meters.
Others say they've struggled to access top-up facilities for their prepayment meters online altogether.
Customers are able to top up over the phone, but phone lines are said to be jammed and plenty of users have already had their payments taken too.
The problems appear to have started over the weekend, coinciding with plunging temperatures and snow as the Beast from the East returned.
On Monday, the Met Office warned of snow throughout this week until Sunday, with temperatures set to fall to -10C.
The Met Office has also issued yellow weather warnings covering almost all of the UK for today and tomorrow.
With most of us already spending more time at home due to the coronavirus crisis, plenty of customers have been left in cold homes.
One E.on customer vented on Twitter a couple of days ago: "@eonenergyuk
no power, website down, app not working, endless telephone queue – how else are we supposed to top up electric supply?"
While another added: "Absolutely appalled at the service we’ve been receiving no [email protected] recently.
"We’ve had an array of issues but being left on hold for 30 mins in a 9°C flat purely because their app isn’t working for us to top up really takes the biscuit."
And a third one said: "@eonenergyuk Did you notice your website and app are not working? Top ups don't go through and households going cold. Solve it asap!!
"At the moment I don't have heating because I can't top up!"
Plus a fourth added: "Took £200 online for top up, STILL NO Gas, Electric or even receipt for payment… or contact from @EONhelp or @eonenergyuk."
A spokesperson for E.on told The Sun it'll ensure no customer loses out financially, and added that it's "working to resolve" the problems.
However, it comes just a few weeks after E.on accidentally charged 1.5million customers two weeks early on Christmas Eve.
At the time, the energy supplier blamed it on an IT glitch with households set to be refunded on December 29.
The delay left some customers out of pocket over the festive break.
What to do if you can’t pay your bills
FALLING behind on your energy bills can be extremely stressful.
If you’re struggling to pay what you owe, contact your supplier as soon as possible.
Your provider has to help you come up with a solution, and you should be able to negotiate a deal that works for you both.
One option is to agree a payment plan where you pay off your debts in affordable instalments.
You may be able to pay off your debts directly from your benefits through the Fuel Direct Scheme.
A fixed amount will automatically be taken to cover what you owe plus your usage.
To be eligible, you must be getting one of the following benefits:
- Income-based jobseeker’s allowance
- Income support
- income-related employment and support allowance
- Pension credit
- Universal Credit (but only if you’re not working)
If you cannot come to an agreement with your supplier, they may try to force you to get a prepayment meter installed.
In very rare cases, where you refuse to negotiate, your supplier might threaten you with disconnection.
I've been affected by the top-up glitch, what can I do?
If you've made a payment online or via its app, E.on said it should eventually go through and show up on your meter.
However, the supplier has asked customers to "bear with it" for now.
If you want a refund of the payment you've made, you should instead contact E.on for help on 0345 366 5996.
You should also call the energy supplier if you're worried your that supply may stop because you haven't been able to top up, but be aware of long waits.
An E.on spokesperson said: "We are aware of intermittent issues with our online payment facilities for our Pay As You Go customers and are working to resolve these.
"We have been proactive in telling customers about these issues and asking that they allow extra time for topping up their energy in advance, just in case their payment is delayed.
"We apologise for any inconvenience and hope to have our online payment facilities running smoothly again soon."
Can I get compensation?
If you've been hit with extra charges due to the issues, it could be worth getting in touch with E.on's customer service about compensation.
The supplier told the Sun it'll discuss with customers on a case by case basis regarding any reimbursement.
It comes after British Gas paid back £1.48million to thousands of pre-payment customers in August after it failed to properly notify them about a switch in provider.
The change caused chaos for some households who were left without gas and electricity as temperatures plummeted.
Low-income families can get £25 a week to help with energy bills during the winter thanks to the cold weather payment scheme.
As of mid-December, struggling energy customers can also get extra help to pay bills and top up meters.
In other energy supplier news, British Gas workers have gone on strike – we explain why and how it'll affect customers.
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