Frequently Asked Questions
- How do I Apply/Start, Stop or Transfer electrical service?
- New Customers: Stop by our office or call to sign up for your service.
Renters, Commercial and Industrial Customers: Please stop by our office or call at least a week in advance so that we can complete your paperwork. A deposit is required.
Other Parties: See us or call to sign up for your service.
*All deposits must be paid by cash or by check. New houses require a WBMLP Representative Assessment before price and terms are determined.
- How can I pay my electric bill? What choices do I have?
- 1. By mail using the enclosed envelope that comes with your bill.
2. Pay online. Click here to pay safely and securely with UniPay Gold.
3. By stopping by our office with cash or a check.
4. By automatic payment. Click here for an Automatic Payment Application Form.
- I didn't receive my bill. What do I do?
- Please call us at 508-835-3681 or use the Contact Form on this website. We will be glad to get you a duplicate bill.
- I think my bill is wrong. How do I get it reviewed and corrected?
- Please call us or stop in Monday-Friday between 8am and 4pm. We will help you understand the charge and assist you in reviewing and resolving any issue.
- My bill is higher this month. Why?
- Season reasons. In winter, cold snaps in some months can increase your bill by more than 10% as your heating increases. Because the sun sets earlier, you may use more lighting than you do in other seasons. Also, the type of clothing we wear is usually heavier in winter requiring longer electric dryer time. In cold weather, many people move inside and use more energy for lighting, cooking and entertainment. Even the types of food we cook in winter tend to be different and require longer cooking times.
In summer, the children are home. The hot, humid weather calls for more air conditioning and dehumidifier use. This alone can increase cooling costs by 10% or more. You may also use more energy for cooking outdoors, cleaning, home improvement projects and heating swimming pools.
Billing Periods: A typical billing period is between 29 and 31 days, but holidays may make your billing period up to 35 days long. A difference of 5 days on your bill can increase your bill by 17 percent.
Holidays: During holidays, you might use more energy for cooking, cleaning, lighting and heating and company.
- How do I report a power outage?
- For safety reasons, please telephone us directly to report trouble at 508-835-3681. Your call may be monitored and recorded. Do not send an email. In safety emergencies, please dial 911. Never assume that you neighbor has already called. Please make the call.
- How do I report a streetlight out?
- To report a streetlight out, please call us at 508-835-3681. If it's outside of our regular business hours, please leave a message with our 24 hour answering service with the exact location of the pole and light.
- I want to install solar panels or a wind power generator on my property. How do I coordinate with the municipal electrical system?
- There is no one answer for this question. Please call us at 508-835-3681 and we'll be happy to discuss your project.
- Before digging, do I have to notify anyone?
- YES. CALL DIG SAFE AT LEAST 2 DAYS BEFORE YOU DIG AT 811! IT'S THE LAW. Click here for more from DigSafe. Planning a home improvement job? Planting a tree? Installing a fence or deck? WAIT! Whether you are planning to do it yourself or hire a professional, smart digging means doing the following. CALL DIG SAFE BEFORE YOU DIG at 811. Please call, do not send an email. A DIG SAFE Representative will send out someone to mark underground facilities. Caution: the depth of utility lines varies and there may be multiple utility lines in a common area.
- How do I read my meter myself?
- Reading your electric meter is a good way to monitor how much you're spending on electricity. By the way, WBMLP’s residential rate is among the lowest in the state.
Electricity consumption is measured in kilowatt-hours. Electric meters keep track of how many kilowatt-hours you've used over some period time - typically about one month. Almost all of WBMLP residential electric customers have Automated Meter Read (AMR) meters with a digital display of electricity usage measured in kilowatt-hours (kWh). These meters transmit billing data via a radio signal to handheld receivers that our meter readers carry on in their trucks. AMR meters are more efficient and accurate for meter reading than the old-fashioned mechanical dial meters.
Reading a meter is easy. You can easily measure your own electric use by simply checking the meter and recording the appropriate display. All you have to do is read the meter like the mileage odometer in your car. Every time the number increases, that's another kilowatt-hour you used. Subtract the reading of last month’s bill from this month’s new reading to determine the number of kilowatt-hours (kWh) used.
The AMR meter at most homes typically displays a two alternating digital readouts:
1. The initial screen will display "88888…" indicating that the unit is functioning properly.
2. The next screen shows the total amount of kWh consumed to date. This 5-digit number is cumulative.
Pay attention to the bars that move under digital kWh display. Every time a bar moves from left to right you use one “watt-hour”. The bar typically can be seen moving through 5-8 positions across the display. The faster the bar moves the more energy you are using. Turn off some appliances and you should notice the bar moving slower and vice-versa.
Reading the meter to save energy
Reading your meter on a regular basis and keeping a record of activities that affect your usage is the first step on your way to conserving energy and managing your utility bill. Periodically read the meter, turn off unnecessary appliances, and re-read the meter to see if that reduces your consumption over that time frame.
Locate your meter, which should be in an accessible location. Bring a notebook and pen with you so you can write down the reading. Note time and date that you took your reading of the electric meter. Repeat the reading of your electric meter at a later date and note the date and time. Subtract the first reading from the second reading and you will arrive at the number of kilowatt hours used during that time frame.
The biggest electricity consumption in your home is typically from heating and air conditioning equipment. Electric water heaters are usually the second-largest user of electricity in your home. After that come major appliances like refrigerators, dehumidifiers, stoves, washers, and dryers, followed by smaller items like TVs, lamps, and stereos.
- Does WBMLP have an Energy Assistance Program that can provide me with guidance about energy and weatherization assistance to qualified households?
- Energy conservation help is just a phone call away. Save money by conserving electricity. WBMLP is a member of Home Energy Loss Prevention Service (HELPS) a residential energy conservation service for Massachusetts municipal utility customers. HELPS provides energy education, home energy audits, assistance with home energy improvements and ENERGY STAR Appliance Rebates. Call HELPS at 1-888-333-7525 or you can also visit them online at http://www.munihelps.org for more information.