Power factor surcharge is imposed when your power factor is less than 0.85.
Power factor surcharge for customers is calculated as follows:-
Current bill: RM2,000
Power Factor = 0.80
Surcharge = [(0.85 – 0.80) / 0.01] x 1.5% x RM2,000
Current bill: RM2,000
Power Factor = 0.60
Surcharge = [((0.85 – 0.75) / 0.01) x 1.5% x RM2,000] + [((0.75 – 0.60) / 0.01) x 3% x RM2,000] = RM750
Power Factor is an index used to compute the efficiency level of electricity usage. The index is measured from 0 to 1. A higher index shows efficient usage of electricity and vice versa. Low power factor shortens the lifespan of electrical appliances and causes power system losses to TNB.
To understand power factor, we will start with the definition of some basic terms:-
KW Working Power (also called Actual Power, Active Power or Real Power).
It is the power that powers equipment and performs useful work.
KVAR Reactive Power.
It is the power which magnetic equipment such as transformers, motors and relays need to produce the magnetizing flux.
KVA Apparent Power.
It is the vectorial summation of KVAR and KW.
Let’s look at a simple analogy in order to better understand these terms.
Let’s say you are at a park and it is a hot day. You order a glass of a carbonated drink. The thirst-quenching portion of the drink is represented by KW.
Unfortunately, along with your drink comes a little bit of foam. The foam does not quench your thirst. This foam is represented by KVAR.
The total content of your glass, KVA, is this summation of KW (the carbonated drink) and KVAR (the foam).
Power Factor is the ratio of Working Power to Apparent Power.
Power Factor = KW / KVA
Looking at our carbonated drink analogy, power factor is the ratio of carbonated drink (KW) to the carbonated drink plus foam (KVA).
Power Factor = KW / (KW + KVAR)
= Carbonated drink / (Carbonated drink + foam)
Thus, for a given KVA:-
i. The more foam you have, the lower your power factor.
ii. The less foam you have, the higher your power factor.
For efficient usage of electricity, power factor must approach 1.0. Power factor that is less than 0.85 shows inefficient use of electricity.
Examples of inductive loads are:-
Inductive loads constitute a major portion of power consumed by commercial and industrial sectors.
How to Improve Your Power Factor
Customers are advised to follow these steps:-
Benefit 1: Reducing KW billing demand
Benefit 2: Eliminating power factor surcharge
Benefit 3: Increased system capacity and reduced system losses in your electrical system
Benefit 4: Increased voltage level in your electrical system, resulting in more efficient motors
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