Why bills vary

Your monthly energy bill may vary from month to month or year to year. Many factors can affect your bill, including:

  • Seasonal changes. Cooler temperatures in the winter can result in more natural gas use to warm your home and heat your water. Warmer temperatures in the summer usually result in the use of more electricity to cool your home. While reduced sunlight in the winter can also mean turning on more lights for longer periods of time.
  • Use of additional appliances or equipment. Air conditioners, dehumidifiers, swimming pool pumps and hot tubs increase your electric use in summer months. New appliances like a television or second refrigerator can also impact your energy bill.
  • Efficiency of appliances. Older, less efficient appliances use more energy. Replacing them with high-efficiency ENERGY STAR® units can significantly reduce your energy costs.
  • Changes in living habits. Did keeping guests comfortable during an extended stay mean turning up the heat or turning on more lights or cooking more meals? Have you been washing and drying more clothes or taking more baths or showers lately? Do you have growing children who are using more electronic games and mobile devices? These kind of lifestyle changes can increase your energy use.
  • Billing days. The number of days between your monthly meter readings may vary slightly, which can impact your bill. Refer to your bill for the number of billing days included and how that compares with the same month last year.
  • Changes to energy rates. Did the price you pay for electricity or natural gas increase or decrease? Even small changes to energy prices can have a significant impact on your energy bill.