WHY IS MY BILL SO HIGH?
Inland Power representatives are always happy to assist you with your billing questions, but you may consider gathering this information prior to calling. It may answer your questions or provide valuable information when you do call.
Review how much power you’ve used for the last 13 months. We call this the kilowatt hour (kWh) history. This history is provided for you on every bill. You can compare your most recent month to that same month one year ago. Weather fluctuations may be a factor in any major differences, but this is a good place to start your search. The kilowatt hours you use are the main driver of costs on your electric bill. Inland Power residential customers average about 1,500 kWh of energy use per month.
TRUE ELECTRIC BILL
Check to be sure this is a true high electric bill. Are there other charges beyond electric service? Any additional service fees (i.e deposits, connection/disconnection fees or returned check fees)? Did Inland Power have to estimate your meter read? This could have caused fluctuation.
Have any past-due amounts from a previous bill been added to the total? Are there ancillary charges added to the bill for other products or services? Don’t forget about state and local taxes.
DAYS OF USE
Check the number of days that are billed for your electric use. This varies from bill to bill due to the number of days in a month and a billing cycle may be a bit shorter or a bit longer month to month. If you submit your own meter read, there may have been fluctuation in the amount of days between each read that was submitted to Inland Power. We recommend that you consistently report your meter read, which helps to avoid a 15 day bill and then 45 day bill.
COMPARE WINTER TO SUMMER
Detailed usage information can be found through your SmartHub account. This allows you to see your daily, monthly and yearly energy usage information. Look to see if there are any anomalies that you can’t explain. Inland Power offers a budget billing program to help members with seasonal fluctuations.
YOUR ELECTRIC METER DOESN'T GO ON VACATION
If you leave your home for an extended period of time for business or vacation, any appliance you leave plugged in or connected will continue to use electricity even while you are gone, especially your hot water heater, freezer, refrigerator, HVAC system, landscape irrigation, well pump, etc. Login to your SmartHub account to check your energy usage while away. Most of us note that the TV and lights were not on, but we forget about these items.
No two households use energy the same way, so comparing your energy bill to your neighbor’s is like comparing apples to oranges. It is best to compare your current use to your past use.
Determine if the size of your household has increased or did someone stay at home more.
Have you added a new swimming pool or hot tub in your back yard?
Have you had “guests” stay for an extended period?
Do you have hobbies that include the use of power tools, ovens and other high electrical resistance tools or appliances?
Read and record meter reads and usage daily for 10-14 days before requesting a field visit.
If after studying all the above information, you still feel there may be a deeper problem, we are happy to take your call and assist you. After handling the high bill complaint on the phone, we determine if a field visit is necessary to determine any energy efficiency problems.
WHEN SHOULD I ASK INLAND POWER TO TEST MY METER?
Inland Power encourages customers to look for the cause in the above situations first. Meter tests should be a last resort instead of first. Inland Power’s new digital meters are extremely accurate.
In the case of a meter check, an Inland Power field representative will check the meter. There is a $25 fee for testing meters if test results show it is within range.
If it is determined that your bill is accurate and you would like some tips on how to lower your electric bill. Please see the energy efficiency portion of our website for ideas for your home or business.