Nobody likes energy bills much but for many Npower customers there has been extra cause for complaints...lots of them.
The firm acknowledged over a year ago that its billing system was causing problems - we are talking about late bills, stopped payments and new accounts not being set-up. It's had a big impact on today's new complaints league table from the Citizens Advice Bureau.
Energy complaints league table: October to December 2013
- npower: 306 complaints per 100,000 customers - three times more than the next in the table.
- Scottish Power 100 complaints per 100,000 customers.
- EDF 62 complaints per 100,000 customers.
It's worth mentioning that the company with fewest complaints in this table was SSE with 31 per 100,000 customers - which means there was a 10 fold difference between the best and worst in this table.
Npower declined our warmest possible invitation to be interviewed, but told me they wrote to all customers apologising for the impact on them of the new billing system. They claim to be making good progress dealing with problems.
Interesting consumer point for those having problems with billing: Energy companies are only allowed to back bill for energy you used in the last 12 months, anything older than that should be written-off where the supplier is at fault.
Trust in energy companies is already wallowing at levels normally reserved for pantomime villains - or bankers. Today's figures won't do an awful lot to help.