Your heating bills are going to see the biggest increase in more than a decade. Just in time for the winter season, when we need it the most.

National Grid expects customers will see a 31% spike in heating bills from November through March 2022, the biggest increase in more than a decade. Bills are expected to be $651, a jump of $155 over last year.

"This is the largest increase we've seen in many years," Kellie Smith, National Grid's New York gas pricing manager said during a conference call.

The increase is in two parts - National Grid’s delivery charge of $284 and the natural gas commodity price of $367. “Our customers pay exactly what we pay for energy, and not a penny more,” said Melanie Littlejohn, the National Grid vice president of customer and community engagement in New York. “And that cost is reflected in the energy supply portion of the bill.”

“The forecast is based on information available at the end of September, and assumes normal winter weather because energy costs and use are impacted by weather conditions,” Littlejohn said.

Unfortunately, Accuweather is predicting an early winter arrival with cold temperatures moving into the Northeast in November and a late start to Spring. We'll get a break before going on a 'roller-coaster weather ride' this winter. "The severity and frequency of the snow and cold air are likely to let up a bit by mid-December before returning with a vengeance in January," Accuweather Senior Meteorologist Paul Pastelok said. “At the end of the winter into early spring, there could be another attempt of the polar vortex being displaced or split.”

National Grid is proposing another delivery rate increase over three years that the PSC has to decide on by the end of the year. If approved, rates would increase by $1.51 per month in the first year, $2.37 in year two, and $2.56 in year three and would take effect on January 1, 2022.

Low income families can get help through the Energy Affordability Program or start changing their habits to save money.

Energy Saving Tips

Heating

  • Lower your water heater setting to 120°F.
  • Revisit your thermostat settings to make sure they’re changing with the weather and your schedule.
  • You can’t be everywhere at once. When not spending time in certain areas of your home, turn down the heat supply to those rooms to reduce your energy usage.

Appliances

  • Make sure to only run full loads in the dishwasher and dryer and don’t forget to clean the lint filter after each use.
  • Did you know you can conserve energy by simply flicking a switch? The switch on the side of your fan reverses the blades to spin clockwise, pushing hot air down into your home.
  • Set your refrigerator’s temperature to 38°F.
  • Try to minimize the number of times you open the fridge and freezer during the day.
  • Use a toaster over to reheat or cook small meals. It uses less energy than a traditional oven.

Electronics

  • Smart power strips can help you control the amount of energy your electronics use. If you don’t have one, unplug the electronics you aren’t using.
  • Don’t leave chargers plugged in if they’re not charging your devices. They’re still drawing energy.
  • Adjust your TV’s display settings to significantly reduce its power use without compromising picture quality.

Lighting

  • Make use of natural light sources during daytime hours by keeping blinds and curtains open.
  • Turn off lights, appliances, TVs, audio devices, and computers when not in use.

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