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Frequently Asked Questions

Who do I call if I have an Emergency, Power Outage or Service Problem?

Call Algoma Power's Emergency Telephone Number: 1-844-901-9473

 

Who can access information on an Algoma Power Inc. customer account?

Account holders (person(s) whose name is on the account) must provide authorization before we can assist anyone who is not listed on an account.

To add a secondary account holder, please call Customer Service at 705-256-3850 or 1-877-457-7378 Monday to Friday from 8 am to 4:30 pm.

  

Am I able to get my bills delivered to me electronically?

Yes, you may sign up for eBillling with Algoma Power, Click Here to register today.

 

Why do I get automated calls from Algoma Power?

Algoma Power Inc. (API) often communicates with its customers by automated messages. We advise of community meetings, important initiatives, planned outages, and past due balances.

 

Can I opt-out of recieving automated calls?

Yes, with each messge you can opt out of getting future messages. If you opt-out of any telephone communication from API, you will opt-out of all communications from API. Please contact us if you have opted out in error.

 

Why is my bill so high?

Below are some explanations of what could lead to high bills. As well there is information on the easiest ways to try and prevent high bills from happening again.

CLICK HERE for a listing of possible causes of high energy consumption in the home.

·          Inefficient Appliances

  • Old appliances in your home may by inefficient and may increase energy consumption
  • Check NEW appliances to ensure they are set to the most energy efficient settings

 Time-of –Use Billing

  • Review your bill to ensure you are using the bulk of your electricity during Off Peak times
  • Where possible, shift your home patterns to make best use of Off Peak times. For example:
    • Do laundry on weekends or after 7pm on weekdays
    • Run large appliances like dishwashers in the evening rather than during the weekday
    • Find tips on taking advantage of Time Of Use pricing to help reduce your bill

**Register for MyHydroEye using your Account Number and MyHydroEye Activation Code, both are listed on the left-hand side of your bill.  MyHydroEye provides quick and easy access to electricity consumption and cost information. You can view your usage and costs at multiple levels of detail (e.g. hourly, daily, monthly, bill period) in a variety of formats. You can also view bill predictions and set up usage and cost alerts to help you in monitoring and managing your electricity consumption. 

Click here to Create your account today.

 

Why do I see consumption in MyHydroEye account during a power outage?

The Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) feeds the MyHydroEye product and customers view what the IESO has recorded. In such cases the IESO will take the Kilowatt Hour (KWH) reading when the power went off and the KWH reading when the power came on.  It will then’ smooth’ or average the consumption over the period of the outage. Essentially you are being charged for exactly what you consumed but the buckets may not always align 100 % due to the smoothing process.

For example, your Smart Meter sends the IESO a reading at 9:00 pm. You power goes out at 9:55 pm and comes back on at 05:30 am.  On the next hour (06:00 am) your Smart Meter will send a new read to the IESO. Due to the power failure there was no read captured at 10:00 pm and no read captured at 05:00am.  Although consumption did occur between 9:00 pm and 9:55 pm and between 05:30 am and 06:00 am. This is the consumption that will get ‘smoothed’ over the number of hours that you were without power.
 

What does the Delivery Charge include?

A portion of the Delivery Charge is calculated at a fixed amount. Another portion increases or decreases depending on the amount of electricity you use, giving you another measure of control over your electricity costs.

Transmission Charge - A variable cost that is linked to how much electricity you use, which pays for the operation and maintenance of the high-voltage transmission system that carries electricity from generating stations to your local distributor.

Distribution Charge - A variable cost that is linked to how much electricity you use, which covers the cost of building and maintaining the distribution lines, poles, and transformer stations in your local area that deliver electricity to your home or business.

Service Charge - A fixed charge that pays for the costs associated with billing, customer service, account maintenance, and general distribution utility operations.

 

What is the Debt Retirement Charge?

The Debt Retirement Charge (DRC) is the residual stranded debt of the former Ontario Hydro and is currently managed by the Ontario Electricity Financial Corporation.

The government removed the Debt Retirement Charge (DRC) from residential users’ electricity bills for electricity consumed as of January 1, 2016, saving a typical residential user about $70 per year. The DRC will remain on all other electricity users’ bills until the end of March 2018.

The DRC line will still appear on residential bills but the amount shown will be $0 for most residential customers.

Multi-unit residential customers may qualify for the DRC exemption for up to 1,500 kWh per month. For more information on the DRC exemption, visit www.ontario.ca/drc. To apply for the exemption please call Algoma Power's Customer Service Department at 705-256-3850 or 1-877-457-7378 Monday to Friday from 8 am to 4:30 pm.

The Debt Retirement Charge will remain on commercial and industrial bills after January 1, 2016. The DRC will end on April 1, 2018.

 

Is the Equal Payment Plan (EPP) right for me?

EPP is a convenient, interest free way to budget electric bills on a monthly basis as long as your consumption stays the same year after year. If you are not on EPP, you are billed for the energy you use each month. The EPP averages your annual consumption/charges into 11 equal bill amounts (based on the consumption history of the service) over the course of 12 months – In the 12th month, your account will be reconciled or settled up. 

 

How will my Equal Payment amount be calculated?

Algoma Power uses your historical energy usage for the last twelve months to determine the average monthly EPP amount. Each month, you will receive a bill with your actual consumption charges – but, you will only pay the Equal Payment amount (less the 8% Provincial Rebate).  On the 12th bill, we will settle the account – you might receive a credit if you've overpaid during the year OR be charged what you consumed over the estimated amount.  

 

Can I request to go on Equal Payment Plan at any time?

Yes, if you are a Residential customer, not on a contract with an energy retailer, and your account has a zero balance.  

 

Can my Equal Payment amount change during the 12 months?

Yes, the EPP plan can be reviewed and adjusted up to 4 times a year. This allows API to align with your actual electricity usage based on your meter readings. You can readily know how much you have not been billed for or how much you have overpaid into the plan by monitoring the running total located on the bottom of your bill. Feel free to contact us if you notice the amount owing is growing. The sooner we align the monthly amount, the less the adjustment will be at reconciliation. When API reviews and an adjustment is required, you will receive a letter noting the change.

 

Can I cancel my Equal Payment Plan?

Yes, you can cancel your Equal Payment Plan at any time.   Before we can remove you from the plan, we require a signature on our “Pre-Authorized Debit + Equal Payment Cancellation Notice”.  At the time of cancellation, any amount owing will become due immediately.

      

What is the difference between a Seasonal and Residential account?

There are different rate structures for these two account types. Both Residential and Seasonal accounts are billed on a monthly basis. A service is defined as Seasonal if occupancy is for a period of less than eight months of the year. 

To qualify for a Residential Account, all of the following criteria must be met:

A) This is the address on your Driver's license, credit card invoices and property tax bill.

B) Occupants must be eligible to vote in Provincial and Federal elections and are enumerated for this purpose at the address of the residence.

C) The location is where you reside and use the normal range of appliances associated with day-to-day living the majority of the year.

D) Occupants who are employed, or in business, go to and from this residence in order to work or conduct business on whatever is a regular basis for the occupant(s) particular type of work or business. 


What exactly do Energy Retailers do?

Energy Retailers are private companies that offer fixed long term contracts for the commodity portion of the electricity bill. Remember, when asking for a quote, make sure that the Energy Retailer is quoting on the electricity commodity portion of the bill. You will still be billed by Algoma Power Inc. for delivery, regulatory and government-related charges. For more information on Energy Retailers, please visit the Ontario Energy Board website.

 

What if I sign with an Energy Retailer?

If you sign a contract with an Energy Retailer, Algoma Power Inc. remains your distributor and will deliver electricity to your service.  Your invoice will show the Energy Retailer’s charge for electricity.

FYI - If you have signed with an Energy Retailer, you have a "cooling-off period" and may cancel by notifying the Retailer, in writing, within 10 business days. Please remember that a contract is legally binding and you do not want to sign a contract with more than one retailer.

 

What if I have inadvertently signed contracts with more than one Energy Retailer?

If you have questions or concerns about your contract you should contact your retailer. The contracts are legally binding agreements and there may be penalties associated with cancelling prior to the end-date as specified in the contract(s).  Once you have signed a contract with an Energy Retailer you should receive a confirmation letter from them. These letters contain confirmation of important information. This information will include: the contract price and length of contract,  retailer obligations - under the Electricity Retailer Code of Conduct and the Consumer Protection Act (Ontario), and retailer phone numbers for customer inquiries and complaints.

 

Who will bill me for my electricity?

Algoma Power Inc. will issue the bill on behalf of the retailer and it will display as a line item on your bill.   

 

Who will maintain the meters at my home or business?

Algoma Power Inc. is responsible for maintaining your meter.  Please ensure it is accessible to our crews at all times. Failure to allow access may result in disconnection of service.
 

Who fixes power lines if they fail due to weather or accidents?

Algoma Power Inc. is responsible for maintaining the power lines and ensuring that electricity is delivered to your property line in the majority of cases. Small repairs can be completed on private property by Algoma Power’s crews. Larger repairs will require the customer hire an electrical contractor on private property to repair the damage. 

 

Can I affix signs, flagpoles, satellite dishes, etc. to API poles?

According to the Electricity Act, 1998, Section 47 it reads:  Every person who, without the consent of a transmitter or distributor, nails or otherwise attaches or causes anything to be nailed or otherwise attached to or upon any wooden transmission or distribution pole of the transmitter or distributor is guilty of an offence and on conviction is liable to a fine of not more than $200. 1998, c.15, Schedule A, S 47.

 

Who do I call to report a non-operational street light?

Please call your local Municipal office to report a street light that is not operating properly or burnt out.

 

What do customers need to know if their service is fed over or under land owned by a third party?

If a customer intends to connect a service line to API facilities by crossing over or under land owned by a third party, API strongly recommends that the customer should preserve the right to cross the third party land by obtaining a registered easement in perpetuity from the third party owner. Failure to obtain the registered easement may result in the third party owner or a successor interring with the customer's ability to maintain, repair or replace the service line. It may also result in the third party or a successor taking legal action to require the customer to remove the service line from the third party which would require disconnection of the customer's service and may necessitate a new service line installation at another location at the customer's expense.  

IMPORTANT NOTICE:  If there are tree concerns at a property, it is prudent to manage the removal of the vegetation at a planned time and to do so in a controlled way. Disconnection of the service wire is recommended for your safety. Contact our office to ascertain ownership of lines and if required, to arrange for a disconnection. Costly repairs can result for a customer if a danger tree is not handled in a safe, timely manner.

 

 

 

 



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