Looking into a high bill

There are many reasons why your bill could be higher than expected. The type of heating system in your home, building or facility, how it was constructed, as well as changes in your behaviour (such as doing more laundry, cooking more often), all factor into your overall electricity use.

What can cause a higher-than-normal bill?

Seasonal shift or change in outdoor temperature

The most common reason for a high bill is a change in season or outside temperature. In the winter for example, we use our heating system more to stay comfortable, and keep lights on longer.

A quick and easy way to check if a high bill is part of your typical seasonal shifts is to compare your current billing period with the same time period last year. You can also compare your usage to the average outdoor temperature to see how your electricity use changes. See our tips for tracking your electricity use in your MyHydro account. 

Log in to MyHydro to check your usage

Behaviour or household changes

If you’ve found that your bill is outside of your normal range for the season, consider some of the other common causes of a high bill. 

These include changes in your usage due to things like:

  • A life event such as a new addition to your household, or a circumstance that led you to spend more time at home.
  • An ongoing renovation, or a recently completed renovation that increases your electricity use.
  • A new appliance or electronic device, like a second fridge or an electric vehicle charger.

Understanding your bill and taking a closer look at your household’s electricity use can help you better understand your consumption, and why your bill may be higher than expected.

Billing factors

If your electricity use has remained relatively level, your bill may be higher due to other billing factors, including:

  • Equal Payment Plan adjustment: if your payments have been less than the electricity you’ve been using, your bill will be higher when you get your annual adjustment to account for that.
  • Longer billing period length: Your bill may cover a longer period of time than previous bills. You can see the number of days in the billing period by looking at the meter reading section of your bill.
  • Meter reading estimates or adjustments: If we were unable to read your electricity meter, your bill will be estimated based on your electricity use history and a message will appear on your bill. Your account will be adjusted the next time we read your meter to reflect your actual electricity use.
  • Rate changes: Changes to electricity rates will make your bill higher even if you use the same amount of electricity as you did previously.

Check your bill for indicators of the factors above to see if they’re contributing to a bill that’s higher than expected. 

Keep track of your electricity use

Your MyHydro account allows you to view your detailed electricity use by the month, week, day or even hour – up to the previous day.

We recommend checking your usage frequently to help you understand how factors like the outside temperature and your daily behaviours can impact your electricity use, which can help you avoid an unexpectedly high bill in the future. See our tips for tracking your electricity use in your MyHydro account. 

Follow our energy-saving tips 

Whether you own or rent, in a large home or small apartment, there are a number of energy-saving tips and projects that can help you save. In addition, rebates are available on energy-efficient products and renovations. 

Trouble paying your bill?

If you’re having difficulty paying your bill right now, we’re here to help with a variety of flexible payment options