If you think your electric bill is too high, understanding some of the most common causes of high electric bills is something that you can do to control the amount of energy you use.
· Check your bill – Make sure you understand your bill. Are there charges besides the regular monthly bill? Such as:
o Additional service fees such as deposits, connection or disconnection fees, or returned check fees
o A past-due amount from a previous bill that is still outstanding
o Charges for products or services you may have purchased
· History – Review your history that is provided in the 13-month chart on your bill and compare your recent month to the same month a year ago. Many times, weather fluctuations are a factor. The average GCREC residential customer uses about 1,000 kWh of energy each month.
· Weather – High humidity can lead to higher electricity usage either from running an air conditioner or turning on additional fans. Additionally, lightning can cause damage to pumps, or appliance causing these devices to run more.
· Seasonal Use – Shorter, cooler winter days can lead to more electricity consumption from heating sources in your home. Likewise, longer, warmer summer days causes increased electricity usage for cooling.
· Increased Usage or Change of Lifestyle – Visiting guests, new family members, college students returning home, etc. can mean more use of electricity.
· Home Renovation or Additions – If you are remodeling or adding a new addition, make sure that the proper size HVAC system is installed. A system that is too large or to small can increase your electricity usage unnecessarily.
· Appliances and Electronics – Many of these devices continue to draw power even when they are not turned on.
· Length of Billing Cycle – Electric bills can vary due to the length of the billing cycle. Be sure to look at this figure when comparing monthly bills.
High Bill Troubleshooting
Here are some basic items to check when you feel your electric usage is higher than normal:
· Check your meter to see if it is working.
· Shut all breakers off at the panel box. See if your meter stops working. It should.
· Turn breakers on one by one and see which one starts the meter working. Then see what the breaker controls.
· Read your meter each day at the same time for 3 or 4 days. This will how you how many kilowatt hours you use per day.
If you still feel there may be a problem after checking the above items, please call our office at 319.824.5251 or 800.390.7605.