Understand Your Bill

Cold Weather Impacts on Energy Use

The Polar Vortex brought extreme cold temperatures to the Northeast

During the week of January 28, frigid air from the polar vortex in the Midwest traveled into the Northeast bringing below normal temperatures to Connecticut.

Energy usage varies from day to day and month to month, depending upon a variety of factors including your daily habits, the weather, and the time of year. An increase in your energy usage could be caused by a variety of factors:

Winter Weather

Bills may be higher during the winter months, due to both the increased energy requirements for home heating and fewer daylight hours, resulting in increased use of lighting.

Changes in the Weather

Your heating system is the largest energy user in your home. As the weather gets colder the heating system operates longer, increasing your bill. If you use an energy-efficient heat pump, your energy bill will be higher. Be sure to review operating instructions for maximum efficiency.

Malfunctioning Appliances

A sudden spike in energy usage may indicate a repair problem with an appliance, heating system, or water heater. A spike can also be caused by a period of very cold weather in the winter. Don't forget that since billing cycles are about a month long, sometimes it can be a few weeks before the effect of really cold weather will be seen on your bill.

An Empty House

If your home is empty for extended periods of time during the winter, you won't necessarily use less electricity. Your daily activities when you are at home generate a fair amount of heat. When you are gone the lack of activity means your heating system must work harder to keep the house warm.

A Full House

If the number of people living in your home increases, your energy use can go up. More people means more showers, cooking and laundry, which can significantly increase your energy use.

We offer FREE tools to help you better understand your electricity use.

  • Our Energy Analyzer tool gives you targeted energy efficiency information, advice and support to help you achieve savings.
  • Visit our Smart Energy section to view our menu of energy efficiency resources


Helping you understand

When looking at your winter bill, consider these activities that may impact your use of electricity or gas.

  • Additional people in the home (children out of school, guests)
  • Heat pump hot water heater / heat pump
  • Outdoor hot tub
  • New appliances / Seasonal appliance
  • Pumping wet basement
  • Electric portable space heaters
  • Heat tapes on pipes, roofs or walkways
  • Auto engine block heaters - diesel trucks
  • Home construction


We offer the following to assist with managing your energy bills:

Budget Billing: This program allows you to keep your bill consistent on a monthly basis to avoid seasonal variations. 

Payment Arrangements: If you are having difficulty paying your bills you may qualify for a payment arrangement. Call 1.888.315.1755 for more information. 

Customer Meter Reading: You may choose to read your own meter on the months we don't read the meter, so that you will receive a bill based on your actual energy use every month and eliminate estimated bills.

Check your electricity supply price and shop for a lower price.