Factors that might affect your bill
The most common factors that can increase or decrease your bill are related to energy rates, seasonal weather, and your energy consumption. Learn more about these factors, and others that resulted in higher utility bills starting late 2021 and into 2022.
1. Seasonal temperatures
Cold temperatures in winter means the average Albertan household consumes more energy to keep their homes warm, leading to an increase on your bill. Hot summer temperatures can also affect your energy consumption, for example if you have air conditioning running to stay cool. A lengthy cold snap like we experienced in December 2021 and January 2022 led to higher consumption and higher bills.
2. Transmission and distribution charges
The transmission and delivery of energy to your home can be the largest portion of your bill. These have both fixed and variable components based on usage, so when your energy consumption increases, so do these charges.
3. Fluctuating energy rates
If you are a Regulated Rate Option (RRO) customer, you may see the rate you pay for electricity change from month to month. This is because the RRO is based on the competitive market conditions in which electricity is purchased, so it can vary based on weather, supply and demand.
As a retailer and wires company in Alberta, EPCOR buys energy from the competitive wholesale market and delivers it to your home or business. When electricity demand is higher (like during a cold winter), the market price of electricity can increase. This leads to a higher rate and an increase on your electricity bill.
View current regulated rates.
You have the opportunity to choose your utility rate option:
The RRO: A default rate that will vary month to month. For more information on how the RRO rate is reviewed and approved, the
Alberta Utilities Commission offers important resources.
Competitive rate: Choose a plan with a competitive energy retailer, with options for a fixed rate plan.
Customers are free to purchase natural gas services or electricity services from a retailer of their choice. For a list of retailers, visit
ucahelps.alberta.ca or call 310-4822 (toll free in Alberta).
4. Energy consumption
How much or how little energy you consume varies for other reasons besides the weather. For example, due to COVID 19 health restriction guidelines, people have spent more time at home, particularly those working or doing schooling remotely. This means higher electricity, natural gas and water bills.
Lowering your consumption can lower your bill
It’s always a good idea to familiarize ourselves with some easy, low-cost ways that everyone can consider to reduce energy consumption. To learn more, read our
Efficiency & Conservation tips.
5. Other factors
Other charges related to your energy use and the cost to deliver that energy to your home or business, can also affect your utility bill. Learn more about the different charges and how they are calculated, with the detailed breakdown of your EPCOR utility bill.