Common Causes of High Electricity Use

Does your hydro bill seem higher than normal? The following is a list of the most common causes of higher-than-normal bills.

Seasonal Appliances
Appliances and other equipment used at different times of year (air conditioners, dehumidifiers, pool pumps, etc.) can make a significant difference to your electricity usage.
Pool Heater / Pool Pump
A pool heater or pool pump that runs 24-hours a day uses a lot of electricity. Put your pool pump and heater on a timer - 12 hours on during off-peak hours and 12 hours off - to save on your electricity bill.
House Guests or Additional People in the Household
House guests, students who have returned home and new babies can all cause your electricity and water usage to increase since more hot water is likely to be used for bathing, dishwashing or clothes washing.
Addition of a Large Screen Television
Televisions, and the components that go along with them, now consume as much as 10 per cent of the energy in many households. That's because Canadians are buying bigger TVs, and more of them. On average, each household has 2.5 sets. And, because screen sizes are growing ever larger, each TV consumes more power. In fact, some of the largest, high resolution, direct view TVs (versus rear projection products) can use as much electricity as a standard, new refrigerator - roughly 500 kWh, every year.

So, in addition to picture quality and size, consider looking for the ENERGY STAR® symbol on the set you buy. ENERGY STAR qualified TVs consume about 30 per cent less energy than non-qualified models. Find out more at Natural Resources Canada.

 Use of a High-Performance Gaming Computer
According to a study conducted by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in 2015, a typical high performance gaming computer can use as much electricity as three refrigerators. If students are home from school over the summer and gaming during peak hours (11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.), costs will be higher.
Addition of New Appliances

Every additional appliance adds to your energy bill. If you purchase a new refrigerator and move the old one to the basement, your electricity bill will go up

When buying new appliances, consider purchasing ENERGY STAR® models. For more information, visit Natural Resources Canada.

Replacement of Old Appliances

Although most people think that a new energy efficient refrigerator will be cheaper to run than an old one, that is not necessarily the case. If the new refrigerator is larger and features an ice maker or water dispenser, it may use more electricity than the smaller model it replaced.

When buying new appliances, consider purchasing ENERGY STAR® models. For more information, visit Natural Resources Canada.

Faulty Appliances
A leaky water heater or toilet, a pool pump or well pump that's running constantly, a fan motor that is about to fail, a faulty thermostat, a refrigerator or freezer with a poor door seal - all of these appliance defects can lead to a surprisingly high electricity bill.
Leaking Hot Water Taps
If you have an electric hot water heater, a leaking hot water tap will drive up both your water and electricity usage.