The only way to describe the weather so far this winter is UNPREDICTABLE. Mild weather has traded places with very cold temperatures on several occasions. However, overall, December 2016 was 82 percent colder compared to November which was warmer than normal.

As a result, many customers have seen their energy usage noticeably increase with their latest bill. Along with the unstable temperatures, there are several factors to consider.

Colder Weather
Weather is the biggest reason for fluctuations in your electric bill since heating costs account for approximately 50 percent of your total bill amount. Significant swings in outside temperature make your heating system run longer and use more electricity. The following chart shows that the average daily temperature for December 2016 in blue was consistently colder compared to the previous year.

December Temperature Chart

We’ve also broken down the data using degree days, which determine how much need there is to heat your home by measuring how weather compares from month to month. This chart shows how much colder December 2016 was compared to October and November, which were milder than normal.


Billing Days
Because of the meter reading schedule during the holidays, many customers have additional days in their December billing cycle compared to the previous month of November. Those extra days can make a significant difference on the total bill amount.

Higher Rates
The TVA seasonal rate structure is adjusted four times a year depending on the season. The rate is higher in the summer (June-September) and winter (December-March) and lower during transitional months (April-May & October-November).

Holiday Activities
Additional energy usage during the months of November and December can come from holiday cooking, extra company, spending more time at home, putting up Christmas lights, etc.

NES has been working one-on-one with customers who have reached out to us with questions by calling NES Customer Relations at 615-736-6900. If you receive a high bill that you know you’re going to have trouble paying on time, we encourage you to contact us right away.

We also offer several bill pay and energy-saving tools to better manage your energy costs.

  • Balanced Billing provides predictable bills based on your average energy usage.
  • The online do-it-yourself audit delivers a personalized report with helpful ways to save and a free energy-saving kit.
  • Project Help offers temporary energy assistance to elderly, disabled and low-income customers who qualify.

Visit to learn more about the programs and services that NES offers.