Why is My Electric Bill So High?

ResidentialCalendarNovember 30, 2018

Were you surprised by your last electric bill? Did your utility company charge you more than you thought they would? Do you know why?

In this article, we’ll explain why your electric bill is so high. We’ll also share some tips for lowering your next bill.

Why is My Electric Bill So High

There are several reasons why your electric bill is so high. Some reasons require simple fixes. Some reasons require more expensive investments in appliances and home repairs. Other reasons are mostly out of your control.

Here are some of the most likely reasons why you’re dealing with a more expensive bill.

Your bill is wrong

It’s possible that your electric bill is simply wrong. Double check this month’s electric bill against past years’ bills during the same billing period. If it’s December and your bill is higher than it was in Decembers’ past, it’s possible that the power company simply made a mistake. 

It’s likely that your power company made a mistake if your electric meter and bill information do not match. Double check whether or not your bill actually matches your meter. You can read our post on how to read an electric meter if you need instructions. You can tell if they match because your meter number will be slightly higher than the number on your bill. It’ll be a little higher because you’ve used electricity since you were first billed. But since it hasn’t been that long, there shouldn’t be a huge difference between the two numbers.

Electricity prices have gone up

States, cities, and power companies alike will raise the price of electricity from time to time. Price increases happen for a variety of reasons from covering the cost of an infrastructure update to increased coal costs.

There’s not much you can do about the cost of electricity other than using less power or getting your electricity from a secondary source like a solar energy system.

You’re using more electricity somehow

Have you bought any new appliances? Have you installed a new heater? Maybe you’ve had guests over the holidays and they’ve been taking long showers? All of these are reasons why you might actually be using more electricity than you think. 

New light fixtures and appliances tend to be more efficient, but if they’re also more powerful than whatever you replaced them with, it’s still possible that they’re using more energy than your old appliances. Think back and ask yourself what has changed recently that could explain the higher bill.

Appliances are old and out of date

Older appliances are not as efficient as newer appliances. Technology improves, regulations change, quality becomes less expensive to produce. There’s a bunch of reasons why your older appliance won’t be as efficient as newer ones may be.

Also, older appliances are less efficient than when they were new. Parts wear out, mechanisms get dirty and clogged up. Things start to slow down with the onset of age.

Whether your appliances need a tune-up or need to be replaced entirely, check out your appliances to see if there’s a reason why they’re eating up more electricity than normal. Usually, the big appliances need a fair amount of electricity as is, and any sort of mechanical inefficiency could easily explain the increase in your electric bill.

Poor insulation

A lot of electricity is used to either heat your house up or cool it down. Either way, bad insulation means your house has a harder time regulating temperature. 

That means your heater has to run hotter for longer and so does your air conditioner. This causes your house to use a lot more electricity. If you notice that your heater and air conditioner are always running, it might be worth checking your insulation. Temperature control devices should only need to run once in a while to maintain temperature. Anything more than that indicates your home isn’t retaining the heat or cold how it should.

How to make your home more efficient

There are some basic things you can do to make your home more efficient. The more efficient it is, the more money you can save in the long-run.

Here are some suggestions for making your home more energy efficient.

Change your thermostat

Lowering your thermostat a little bit will help you get your electric bill under control. Nothing says you have to wear a coat inside your house to stay warm, but nothing says it needs to be so hot that you can dress like it’s summer during the winter. Keep your thermostat at a reasonable temperature and watch the effect it has on your electric bill.

Regular maintenance

Keeping your house in tip-top shape takes a little bit of work, but it also saves money in the long run. Clean out your air vents, change your filters, give your water heater a tune-up, and reseal your windows and doors. All of these things will help you protect your home from wasting energy.

Make better lighting decisions

Ceiling fan lights aren’t very efficient. They’re designed to light up an entire room and they usually require a lot more energy to do so. It’s actually recommended that you use standalone lamps to light specific parts of your home instead of giant ceiling lights. This will also help you save on your next electric bill.

Take care of the outside of your house

People are usually pretty good at taking care of the insides of their homes, but what about the outside? Cracks in walls and broken seals can all cause problems for homeowners who want to save money on their electric bills. Go around your home at least once a year to make sure the outside is taken care of just as well as the inside.

Solar Can Help Lower Your Utility Bill

There are so many reasons why your electric bill is so high, and there are so many things you can do to try and lower it. Getting a solar energy system is another way that you can lower your electric bill.

Solar energy has come a long way in a short period of time. You might not realize it, but your home probably meets the requirements for a solar energy system.

The easiest way to find out for sure is by contacting one of our Vivint Solar reps. They’ll come to your house, inspect your sun exposure levels, rooftop layout, and energy-use needs. 

After gathering this data, they’ll let you know whether or not you could save money on your utility bill by going solar.

Contact one of our reps to find out if you qualify today!

How to Go Solar

Vivint Solar makes renewable energy a simple and affordable alternative. We take care of everything from solar system design, to paperwork and permitting, to installation and maintenance.

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