Reasons Your Bill May be Higher than Normal

 

You can help ensure that your bill is as accurate as possible by submitting your meter reading every month.

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Common Reasons for Higher Than Usual Bills

Estimate is lower than actual use
Check your bill and see if you’re being charged for an estimate or actual power use. If your bill is based on a meter reading and not an estimate, and previous bills were based on an inaccurate estimate, then your bill might be higher than usual.

Missed meter reading
Most meters are read every three months. Occasionally, meter readers cannot access your meter, which results in your bill being based on an estimate and not on an actual meter reading. Dogs, high fences and locked gates are the most common barriers for meter readers. Visit Meter Readings for more information.

Use of space heaters and air conditioners
Reduce the number of electrical appliances and lights that are in use at the same time, especially when it’s really cold or hot outside.

New electric appliances
New appliances can increase your power use. If you get a new appliance or item that uses electricity, try to offset the power needed for that item through electricity conservation in other areas of your home. Learn how you can save power and money in our Save Power at Home section.

Faulty appliances
Small problems with your appliances can lead to higher power bills. Common problems that can lead to higher power use include:

  • Leaky electric water heaters
  • Defective thermostats
  • Well pumps that run continually
  • Faulty door seals on refrigerators and freezers

Days billed
A typical bill covers about 28-33 days. Your first bill can range from 16-45 days, depending on how the billing date falls and when your service was connected. Sometimes a billing period can include five weekends, which would cause a bill to appear higher than usual.

Equalized payments
Equalized billing is reconciled annually. You may receive a bill that is higher than usual to account for any actual usage charges over and above the estimate charges. If your power use is lower, you'll see a credit on your bill. Check the 'Other charges' section of your bill for the reconciled amount owing.

Additional charges
Connection fees, disconnection fees and security deposits are one-time charges that can increase your bill. These one-time charges will not appear on your future bills if paid in full. Check the ‘Other charges’ section of your bill for any fees or deposits.

Incorrect meter reading
If the meter reader misread your meter, or if the meter is incorrect, then your bill may be higher than usual. If you believe this is the case, you can provide your own meter reading.

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