Hydro-Québec has warned Quebec residents that their heating bill is likely to be higher than average this November, due to the unusually cold temperatures we’ve experienced. On average, heating costs for a typical apartment will be up by about $3, while costs for an average-sized house will be up by about $18.
This applies only to people who heat their homes using electricity – although other homes could also see an increase in their gas bill.
Even if you haven’t turned up your thermostats, expect a more expensive bill for November – that’s because heating your home to a “normal” temperature still requires more electricity when it’s colder outside.
Hydro-Québec says heating accounts for up to 55% of electricity costs in the winter, while water heating accounts for about 20%. Together, they make electricity bills for Quebeckers skyrocket during the colder months.
The good news is, there are some things you can do to reduce your electricity bill:
- Insulate your windows with plastic film to prevent air drafts;
- Turn down the thermostat by 1-2°C in rooms that aren’t being used;
- Install energy-efficient electronic thermostats;
- Install energy-efficient lightbulbs;
- Take shorter showers;
- Do your laundry in cold water.
The crown corporation also says it’s hoping to implement new “dynamic” pricing structures that would help it manage peak electricity demand during the winter.