Louisiana Electric Customers ‘Shocked’ As Bills Skyrocket Higher
No matter where you live in Louisiana from Lake Charles to New Orleans or Lafayette to Shreveport you're going to be getting some unwelcome correspondence in either your mailbox or your inbox. Which box brings you the bad news is dependent on what method you use to receive your electric utility bill.
[Spoiler Alert]: If you haven't gotten your bill for the most recent month's service be prepared to be "shocked". And I don't use that word because it's a great pun for a story about electricity I mean you will literally gasp out loud when you see what the total of your power bill is.
Several of you have reached out to us and wanted to know "Why is my electricity bill so high". We have a couple of theories as to why your most recent bill is anywhere from $40 to $140 higher than the previous bill.
The first thing you need to check is how long was the billing cycle for each bill. Most power companies fluctuate their billing cycles based on their ability to collect data from residential and commercial meters. In several cases where you shared your bill with us, it was noted that the billing cycle on the more expensive bill was actually several days longer than the less expensive bill.
Another thing to consider is that near the end of December and during the month of January much of Louisiana was experiencing temperatures that were at or well below freezing. Just as your power bill goes up when you run the air conditioner all the time, so shall the power bill when your heater is working overtime too.
Then there is the drain on electricity that comes from appliances that you don't think about being on. Your refrigerator, your computer, your smart television, and other similar appliances do use quite a bit of electricity, especially since they are usually running or at least turned on most of the time.
Almost all of the energy providers who serve customers in Louisiana have billing programs that can protect you from massive up-and-down swings in your power bill. Many of those same providers will work with you if you need extra time to pay your bill too. The important thing to remember is they can't help you if you don't contact them, so reach out.
Power providers are also having to pay higher bills for the energy they distribute to you. Many of our power providers point to this past summer's drought and lower water levels on the Mississippi River as catalysts for higher fuel prices they have to pay to create the electricity you need.
Many power providers are suggesting that the "spike" consumers are seeing in their power bills is temporary and that bills should return to a "near normal" level perhaps as early as the next billing cycle.
In the meantime, do what you can do to reduce your use around the home. When it's cold wear a jacket or a sweater around the house. Make sure your doors and windows are properly sealed against drafts. Have you changed the filter in your furnace or HVAC system any time in the past year? See, there are things you can do on a personal level that will pay off for you next month.
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