What is Power Factor?

Power factor is a measurement of how effectively electricity is utilised. Certain appliances have a power factor of 100%, meaning that they're 100% efficient. However in some appliances whereby additional power is needed, for example to heat up its coil, precious electricity is wasted. This constitutes a loss to both the consumer as well as TNB.

How does Lower Power Factor Cost you Money?
When your average monthly power factor falls below 85%, a surcharge is added to your electricity bill. The lower your power factor, the higher the surcharge. The rates fixed by TNB are as follow:

(a) Below 0.85 to 0.75.....1.5% per unit
 (b) Below 0.75..................3.0% per unit

The % total of (a) and (b) will be levied on your electricity consumption for the month.

How To Tell If You Have Low Power Factor?
When there is an additional sentence in the particulars column of your electricity bill as illustrated here.

How To Improve Low Power Factor?
Poor power factor can be corrected in a number of ways:

1. Installing automatically - switched capacitors the most common method used.

2. Adjusting existing capacitors - proper control and maintenance is essential to ensure the smooth running of the power factor corrective equipment.

3. Upgrading of capacitors - power factor corrective equipment has to be upgraded accordingly as the factory expands.

4. Reducing harmonics - as harmonic current is being generated, careful consideration must be give to the design of power factor corrective equipment.