You have 21 days (19 days for commercial customers) from the billing date to pay your electricity bill using the method of your choice:
- Through a financial institution (by automatic teller, phone, Internet banking or at the counter)
- By mail (Hydro Westmount, 4333 Sherbrooke Street W., Westmount, Quebec H3Z 1E2) *
- In person at the Customer Service counter, Westmount City Hall, 4333 Sherbrooke Street W. *
* Cheques should be addressed to the City of Westmount. Please make sure to include the detachable portion of the invoice.
If you are moving and would like to close or open an account, please provide our Customer Service Office with all the relevant information. Call 514 925-1414. We would appreciate it if you would take a few minutes and send us your meter reading, on the day of your move, so that we can bill you for your actual consumption.
To better help you plan your budget, Hydro Westmount offers an Equalized Payments Plan. This practical payment method allows you to spread your yearly electricity consumption over twelve monthly bills. Your monthly payment is calculated once a year, based on the previous twelve months. This payment method is designed to save you unpleasant surprises and unexpected invoices. It remains in effect as long as your payments reach us on time.
Hydro Westmount offers customers the convenience of paying with a Pre-authorized Payments (PAP) Plan. Using this payment method, the exact amount of your invoice is automatically debited from your bank account on the due date. Pre-authorized payments offer a simple and convenient way to pay your electricity bill on time. Contact HW Customer Service at 514 925-1414 to obtain a PAP Plan application form.
There are many factors that can influence your hydro bill.
The time of year, thermostat settings, outside temperatures, the size and number of appliances in the home, improvements to insulation, a new baby, teenagers, and houseguests can all play a part.
As we all know, some winters are worse than others. If you heat with electricity, you will consume more during exceptionally cold ones. We can’t control the weather but, as you will see below, there are other things we can control.
Characteristics of your dwelling
Heating accounts for over 50% of your electricity consumption. Your home can lose up to 40% of its heat if its roof and foundation are poorly insulated. What you can do to make a difference:
- Have your insulation checked and upgraded if necessary, especially on the sides of your house facing north or facing the prevailing winds.
- Apply caulking or weatherstripping around windows, doors, fireplace, and anywhere else air sealing is needed. It costs little, and saves a lot!
- In winter, uncover the sun-exposed windows and close the curtains or blinds on the shaded windows.
Each family’s lifestyle is different, and it is normal to expect that your bill won’t be the same as your neighbor’s. Homemaking habits, hobbies, the number of children and their ages all vary from household to household and all have an impact on your hydro bills. Changing your habits costs you nothing, and can make a big difference in your energy bill.
- Operate appliances only when necessary.
- Take shorter, cooler showers.
- Repair leaky faucets.
- Reduce the heat in unused rooms.
- Turn down your thermostats at night.
- Open the refrigerator only as long as necessary.
Variations in the number of days in your billing period can also have a bearing. Hydro meters are read on a two-month cycle which means that the period covered by the bill can vary between 55 and 65 days. A difference of 10 days during the hottest period of the summer or in the middle of winter could really surprise you.
Vacations and your appliances
Being away from home doesn’t automatically mean a reduction in electricity consumption – many people don’t realize that a number of appliances continue to operate while they’re away. A refrigerator or freezer, for instance, will operate unless it is unplugged. When nearly empty, it often works harder. The heating system and furnace fan also continue to operate to keep the house warm. Even if we remember to turn the temperature down, the heat still comes on periodically to maintain the set temperature.
Before being installed in your home, the meter has been inspected by Measurement Canada, just as gasoline pumps and commercial scales. The majority of meters are tested every 12 years (some every 6 years). Once calibrated, the meter is sealed to ensure that no one can tamper with its mechanism. The meter is a reliable, high-precision instrument that cannot be reset to zero after a reading. Should an error occur when your meter is read, the next reading will automatically correct it. Experience has shown that the meter is tough and hard-wearing.
How does the meter operate?
Your meter keeps a running total of the kWh you consume, much like the odometer in your vehicle. It is equipped with a horizontal disk and four or five dials. The digits 0 to 9 appear on each dial.
- When you consume electricity, the disk rotates, driving a tiny sprocket wheel which in turn moves the pointer on the first, or units, dial.
- After one complete turn, the pointer on the units dial activates the dial on the second, ortens, dial.
- The hundreds and thousands dials are activated in the same way.
- Your consumption is calculated on the basis of the readings on the four (or in some cases, five)dials.
How do I read a meter?
Your meter has either four or five dials on it. Some hands move clockwise and others move counter clockwise. All hands move from 1 to 2 to 3, and so on. From left to right, read and record the placement of the hand on each dial. If the hand on the dial is between numbers, always use the lower of the two numbers. The only exception is if the hand is between 0 and 9, in which case you would use 9.
How often will Hydro Westmount read my meter?
For most of our residential customers, meters are read six times per year and you will receive an invoice six times per year. You can budget accordingly by calling our Customer Service Office staff to determine the invoicing date for your area, or you can determine the schedule based on the invoice date of your first bill. Once you receive your first invoice, you will be invoiced at approximately the same time every two months.
What is an estimated reading?
If we have not been able to read your meter, we will estimate your consumption for that particular billing period. An estimated reading takes into account past electricity use as well as adjustments relating to the season. Any differences will be adjusted at the time of the next meter reading. Estimated readings only take place when we are unable to gain access to read your meter.
Measuring electrical consumption
To calculate your consumption, Hydro Westmount uses an electricity meter that measures the kilowatthours you have used in a given period.
What is a kilowatthour?
The kilowatthour (kWh) is a time-based unit of electricity consumption.
- watt = basic unit of power of an electrical appliance
- 1 watthour = 1 watt of power used over a 1-hour period
- 1 kilowatthour = 1,000 watthours
In your opinion, what consumes more electricity: a 1,000-watt (1 kW) baseboard heater operating for one hour, or a 100-watt (0.1 kW) light bulb left on for 10 hours? And how much does that amount to in dollars?
Calculate the consumption for each case:
|x||Cost per kWh ($)||0.0733|
|=||Cost of the electricity consumed ($)||0.0733|
|x||Cost per kWh ($)||0.0733|
|=||Cost of the electricity consumed ($)||0.0733|
Surprised? The same amount of electricity is consumed in both cases.
Complaint procedure concerning the application of a rate or a condition for the supply of electricity
This procedure applies to any complaint concerning the application of a rate or condition for the supply of electricity within the meaning of sections 86 to 101 of An Act respecting the Régie de l’énergie (1996, S.Q., ch.61);
CUSTOMERS’ COMPLAINTS (first level of claim) Customer service
Any complaint relating to the application of a rate or condition for the supply of electricity, shall be first addressed to the customer service which can be reached at the telephone number or at the address appearing below;
CUSTOMERS’ COMPLAINTS (second level of claim) PROCEEDING BEFORE THE DIRECTOR OF HYDRO WESTMOUNT
The customer may address himself to the Director of Hydro Westmount if he or she considers that the answer received from the customer service is unsatisfactory. The complaint shall be formulated in writing and shall include a detailed description of the situation which is the object of the complaint, an indication of the results sought and the name, address, telephone number and the account number shown on your bill;
ASSISTANCE FROM CUSTOMER SERVICE
Upon request, the customer service employees will assist complainants in formulating their complaints and give them the opportunity to present their observations;
DECISION BY THE DIRECTOR OF HYDRO WESTMOUNT
The Director of Hydro Westmount shall communicate his or her written decision to the complainant within sixty days of receiving the complaint.
The Director shall indicate the reasons for the decision and the possibility of recourse to the Régie de l’énergie under sections 94 and following of An Act respecting the Régie de l’énergie;
If a notice of interruption has been transmitted or if service has been interrupted, the customer may formulate a written or verbal complaint to the Director of Hydro Westmount who shall communicate the reasons of his or her decision, in writing within forty-eight hours of receiving the complaint;
CUSTOMERS’ COMPLAINTS (third level of claim) PROCEEDING BEFORE THE RÉGIE
The customer may ask the Régie de l’énergie to study his or her complaint if he or she considers that the decision he or she has received from the Director of Hydro Westmount is unsatisfactory. The request shall be formulated in writing and shall indicate the reasons for such a request. The request shall be sent to the Secretariat of the Régie within thirty days of the date of transmission of the decision of the Director of Hydro Westmount to the customer. The request shall be subject to the procedure prescribed in sections 94 to 101 of An Act respecting the Régie de l’énergie.
City of Westmount
995 Glen Road
Westmount, Quebec H3Z 2L8
|RÉGIE DE L’ÉNERGIE
800 Place Victoria, Suite 255
P.O. Box 001
Montreal, Quebec H4Z 1A2
|Telephone:||514 925-1414||514 873-5050|
|Fax:||514 989-5254||514 873-2070|