Hydro Ottawa warehouse filled with spools of electrical cable

FAQs

Questions? If you don’t find the answer below, feel free to contact us. We’d like to help.

How do I report a power outage, or find details about an ongoing power outage?

To report a power outage, call our 24/7 outage line at 613-738-0188.

Information on current outages is available online and through the Hydro Ottawa App.

If you spot a downed wire, keep a distance of at least 10 meters (33 feet or the length of a school bus), call 911, and report the damage to Hydro Ottawa.

Where can I find my bill online?

Your bill is available through your online account. If you don't have one yet, registration is easy – it takes just a few minutes.

There used to be an online account feature called ‘Predict My Bill’. Is it still available?

Yes, the ‘Predict My Bill’ feature is still available through your online account under Billing.

My bill seems high, what could be the cause?

There are many factors that can impact your electricity bill, including rate changes, and the weather.

A cold winter means that heating systems have to work harder to keep up. Even if you don’t heat your home with electricity, your furnace motor and fan have to run more, sending bills higher.

Also, being away from home doesn't automatically lead to reduced electricity consumption. A number of appliances and electronics left plugged in are 'Always On' and still draw power while you're away, including your refrigerator and television. Your heating and cooling systems also continue to operate periodically, even if the temperature has been adjusted to vacation mode.

You can manage your electricity consumption through your online account and by taking advantage of Time-of-Use rates. These will allow you to monitor your use, and shift it to Off-Peak rate periods.

You may also reference our tools and tips that may help you reduce your electricity usage.

If you find you are having difficulty paying your bill, Hydro Ottawa encourages you to call us and make payment arrangements instead of leaving a bill unpaid. There are also a number of financial assistance programs available.

You can also sign up for our Equal Monthly Payment Plan to help smooth out your electricity costs over a twelve month period.

Do I qualify for the 8% Provincial Rebate?

Since January 1, 2017, residential customers, business customers with a demand of less than 50 kilowatts, and farm customers are automatically eligible for the 8% Provincial Rebate on their electricity bill. The rebate is equal to the provincial portion of the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST).

Business, institutional and industrial customers may also be eligible.

How can I update my billing address?

To update your billing (mailing) address without changing your service address, please contact a Customer Service representative by telephone at 613-738-6400 or by email at customerservice@hydroottawa.com

How do I pay my bill?

Hydro Ottawa offers many different options to allow you to make simple, on-time payments. Choose the method that’s most convenient for you and your family.

Does Hydro Ottawa offer an automated Credit Card payment option?

Hydro Ottawa offers automated payment plans where the amount due is automatically withdrawn from your bank account on the due date. While credit card payments are an accepted payment method, they are a one-time payment option at this time.

Can I make a payment in person at your office?

Hydro Ottawa does not accept payments in person. We do, however, offer many other options to allow you to make simple, on-time payments.

If your account is at risk of disconnection, please submit your payment at a financial institution, and forward the receipt (proof of payment) by email to RevenueRetention@hydroottawa.com.

I’d like my bill payment to be automatically deducted from my bank account. How can I make this happen?

You can register for automated payments, online or by telephone. If you choose to self-serve online, you will first need to set up an online account. Once you have an online account, log in, click ‘Billing’ and select ‘Automated Payment Plan’. Then select either ‘Pre-Authorized Payment Plan’ or ‘Equal Monthly Payment Plan’ and follow the instructions. If you experience a problem, contact us

What happens if there isn’t enough money in my account to cover my automated withdrawal?

If an automated payment is returned due to non-sufficient funds (NSF), a Returned Payment Charge of $15 plus any bank charges will be applied to your account. These charges will be withdrawn on your subsequent due date, at the same time as your monthly payment.

If you cannot pay the balance owing, your payment plan will be suspended until your account is up to date.

If you need help paying your bill, financial assistance programs are available. Give us a call and we’ll find one that works for you. 

Why is my last payment not appearing through my online account?

Your online account is updated as payments are received. Payments may take up to five business days to be applied, depending on the method of payment.

I am in the process of preparing my yearly tax return. How can I get copies of my electricity bills from last year?

Billing and usage data is available through your online account, free of charge, for up to two years’ worth of data. Hydro Ottawa is able to send bill copies, or other financial reports. There is a fee, however, to prepare and send these documents.

Can a credit balance be refunded?

Credit balances may be refunded by cheque.

If you have closed an account with a credit balance, a refund will automatically be issued 21 business days after we prepare your final bill. A cheque will be sent by mail to the billing address or the forwarding address listed on your account.

Balances of less than $5.00 will not be returned by mail.

Hydro Ottawa may transfer the credit to another active account under the same name.

What is online billing?

Online billing is a convenient, secure and environmentally friendly way to view your electricity bill. Once you have registered for ‘My Account’, you will receive an email notification (to the email of your choice) when your bill is ready for viewing. You can pay your online bill by telephone or online through your financial institution, or by enrolling in an automated payment plan.

How do I sign up for online billing?

Registration takes just a few minutes. First you need to create an online account. Once this is complete, all you need is a valid email address.

Register for an online account

How do I cancel my online billing registration?

If you would like to cancel your online billing registration, contact us by telephone at 613 738-6400. A Customer Service representative will assist you.

Will I continue to receive a paper bill in the mail?

No. Once you have registered for online billing, you’ll receive an email notification when your next bill is available. You will, however, be able to print or save your online bill at your convenience.

What software do I need to see my online bill?

You can access your online bill from any web browser that supports 128 bit encryption.

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 9+
  • Google Chrome
  • Firefox / Mozilla Users

To check the encryption level on your browser, click 'Help', 'About', and it will be listed.

Is the online bill exactly like my paper bill?

Yes, with one exception. You cannot print out your bill and take it to your financial institution or mail it to Hydro Ottawa for payment.

I have a lot of accounts I would like to enroll in online billing. Is there an easy way to do this other than registering each account individually?

An upload account tool is available that allows you to add multiple accounts simultaneously. Simply click "More than 5 accounts?" and you will be presented with a file upload dialog. The file you upload must be a plain-text file and must include one account per line. Each line must contain the account number, followed by an amount due from a previous bill, and finally by a 'Y' to indicate that you'd like to register the account for online billing, or an 'N' if you wish to simply add the account to your profile in order to access your consumption and billing history. Each value should be separated by a vertical line. 

Sample
9991234567|211.35|Y
9987654321|491.30|Y
1234567890|119.36|N

Why am I not receiving my online bill notifications?

First, ensure that you are enrolled in online billing by navigating to the Billing section of your online account.

Most of the time, your online bill notification (email) has been accepted by your service provider. Problems with delivery are most often associated with spam/junk mail settings as well as internet security and anti-virus applications. How your email, internet security or anti-virus applications are configured may determine if your online bill notification can be successfully delivered.

To correct this, we recommend adding @hydroottawa.com to your 'Safe List'.

If you have recently changed or modified your email address, but did not update your online profile:

  • Sign in to your online account;
  • Once logged in, click Profile;
  • Update your email address and click Update.

I can’t find ‘MyHydroLink’. Where is it?

We have updated our online services to include an improved online account experience (formerly known as MyHydroLink). We have also introduced a mobile application (app).

What if I forget my password?

If you have forgotten your password, go to the online account page and click "Login". Then click "Reset Password". Enter your email address and an email will be sent to you to reset your password.

When will my new password be activated?

Your password is active immediately after you reset it.

I can’t log into my online account. What could be the problem?

If you have a third-party ad blocker installed within your browser, you may need to temporarily disable it while trying to login. Or you can add hydroottawa.com to your ad blocker’s list of safe websites. 

If this doesn’t work, you may need to refresh your browser by using the keyboard shortcut CTRL + F5.

If this doesn’t work, try clearing your browser’s history and data.

If none of these actions work, please contact us.

I previously logged in to my online account with a username. Why do I have to login with my email address now? 

We made this change because one of the most common complaints with our website was related to the login system. Customers were forgetting their username and having trouble retrieving their password.

To make the process even easier, you can now sign in using your Facebook or Google account. Once your Facebook or Google account is linked to your online account, signing in can be done with just one click.

Can anyone who has my email address access my online account?

No. In order for someone to access your account through the app or our website, they need your password. We have security measures in place to safeguard your online account. For instance, consecutive failed login attempts result in the user's online account being locked.

Can I have two separate email addresses associated with my account and login to the app with either of them?

At this time, only one email address can be associated with your online account.

How do I register additional online accounts?

Once you log in to your online account, click on “Profile”. Accounts can be added or removed here.

When I try to view the Usage section of my online account, the page doesn’t load. What could be the problem?

We are continuously working to improve the online account experience and resolve any technical issues.

If you’re having trouble viewing your usage, it may be an error related to Internet Explorer or Safari.

To work around this issue, try logging into your account and viewing your usage through Google Chrome or Firefox.

If this does not fix the issue, please contact us.

I used to be able to download my daily and hourly data through my online account. Is that feature still available? Where can I find it?

Yes, this feature is still available through your online account.

Once you login, click on “Billing” to navigate to the “Download My Data” option.

Why does the content on my online account profile page not display correctly?

Hydro Ottawa makes every effort to ensure that access to your online account is up to date with emerging technology. There may be web browsers, however, that are not compatible. We encourage you to refer to information provided by your web browser for help with troubleshooting and known product issues. To ensure you are also receiving an optimal browsing experience, we suggest upgrading to the latest version of your browser.

How is my personal and financial information kept safe?

We use several methods to ensure that your information is secure:

  • Your email and password are unique identifiers that only you know. This information is personal and confidential and should not be shared.
  • We use SSL (secure socket layers) which ensures that your connection and information are secure from outside inspection.
  • We use 128 bit encryption to make your information unreadable as it passes over the Internet.
  • We automatically sign you out of a session if it is inactive for 20 minutes.

Are all computers safe to use?

Computer security experts advise that you may put your information at risk when you use a public computer for personal business. While Hydro Ottawa uses numerous security measures to protect your personal information on our website, the use of public computers may compromise the security of your information. Public computers include those in schools, libraries, and internet cafés.

For maximum security, you may want to avoid using public computers when enrolling or modifying your personal or banking information.

Why is my account locked for security reasons?

If you receive a message that your account has been locked, it may be that an incorrect password has been attempted more than six times. As a security measure, your account has been locked for 24-hours. Should you require access prior to the end of the 24-hour period, a Customer Service representative would be happy to unlock your account for you at 613-738-6400.

I generate my own electricity. Why can’t I see how much I have generated on my online account?

Your online account (My Account) only shows how much electricity you have consumed. It currently does not show what has been generated. Details of your generated usage may be found on your bill or by submitting a data request through ceservicerequests@hydroottawa.com.

What is the ‘Neighbourhood Comparison’?

The ‘Neighbourhood Comparison’ is an insight that allows you to benchmark your electricity usage against that of similar homes in your residential area.

Why are you comparing me to my neighbours?

Experience shows that this type of comparison can help customers save electricity. It provides you with an idea of what you could potentially save. 

Which neighbours are you comparing me to?

Our goal is to provide you with a comparison that is valid and meaningful. We do this by looking at other households in your area – homes that are geographically close to yours, based on postal code. So you may or may not be compared to your direct neighbours. We can also provide better insights and analytics if you update your home profile.

Do my neighbours see my electricity usage information? Is my personal information being shared with my neighbours? Can I get a list of neighbours that I’m compared to?

No, the ‘Neighbourhood Comparison’ does not reveal your specific electricity usage to your neighbours.

Personal information collected and used for this service was done in accordance with Hydro Ottawa’s Privacy Policy. You may visit this webpage or contact customer service with any questions you may have about the collection and use of personal information for this service.

What is Appliance Breakdown and how does it work?

Appliance breakdown takes the electricity data provided by your meter and your appliance profile to categorize the usage of individual appliances. Each appliance uses electricity in a unique pattern - think of it like an appliance fingerprint. We detect and extract these “fingerprints” and use the data to provide useful insights and recommendations.

How much detail does the appliance breakdown provide?

We breakdown your usage into as many as 12 appliance categories. You can track the usage of each category over the course of the year and see how they change based on season, weather and your behaviour. We identify the categories that consume a large amount of electricity, like ‘Always On’, furnace, cooling and pool pump, based on the usage from your meter. Knowing this usage, we then use statistical data to estimate how much your other appliance categories, like laundry, cooking, lighting and entertainment, are consuming. In the end, through a combination of your actual usage and our rule-based model, we can compose a holistic picture of your total electricity consumption.

Why is my online account not showing the electricity usage of my individual appliances?

We take the electricity data from your meter and refer to your appliance profile to pinpoint the usage of each individual appliance.

Your online account will show the electricity usage of your individual appliances once you update your appliance profile. You can update your appliance profile under the Usage section of your online account.

Why do I see a neighbourhood comparison for some of the appliances in the breakdown but not others?

We are able to determine the consumption of certain appliances including Furnace, ‘Always On’, Pool Pump and Cooling directly from usage data provided by your electricity meter. This allows us to provide you with a neighbourhood comparison. The remaining appliances are determined using rule-based techniques and that comparison is not possible. More information is available to help you better understand what each category includes.

What is 'Always On'?

‘Always On’ is a term for the devices in your home that are consuming electricity whether you are using them or not. You may have heard of it referred to as ‘vampire loads,’ ‘phantom loads,’ or ‘base loads.’ ‘Always On’ includes personal computers, monitors, printers, gaming consoles, phone chargers, stereos, televisions and cable boxes.

My 'Always On' usage is really high. Is that normal?

Possibly. Depending on the home, ‘Always On’ usage can represent 15% to 50% of a home’s monthly electricity use.

I noticed there have been changes to my online account. It was formerly called MyHydroLink. Will I continue to receive notifications when I’ve reached my electricity usage thresholds?

No, but you will still be able to monitor your electricity usage, just in a slightly different way.

We have discontinued the ‘On-Peak Consumption Threshold’ and ‘Electricity Consumption Threshold’ notifications that were available through your online account, formerly called MyHydroLink. The ‘Due Date’ and ‘Electricity Bill Threshold’ alerts will continue. 

We also offer a variety of email notifications about your electricity usage, including ‘High Usage Alerts’.

Other information about your electricity consumption continues to be available through your online account, including billing and payment history.

How will I know what the peak times are?

Time-of-Use rate periods are available online.

I have electric heat. How will this impact my bill? What about my other appliances, which run all day?

As a general rule, electric heating operates more often at night when the temperature drops. This is also when electricity is the cheapest.

In a 168-hour week, only 30 to 40 hours (depending on season) are at On-Peak times. There are nearly three-times as many hours at Off-Peak rates.

Do I pay Time-of-Use rates if I’ve signed a contract with an electricity retailer company?

You have two options for electricity supply. You can have your electricity supplied by Hydro Ottawa through the Regulated Price Plan (RPP) where prices are set by the Ontario Energy Board (OEB). The other option is to sign a contract with an electricity retailer. As a residential customer, you are automatically part of the RPP unless you choose to purchase your electricity from an electricity retailer.

An electricity contract covers only some parts of your bill. You will continue to pay other charges to Hydro Ottawa regardless of whether you sign a contract with an electricity retailer. 

How can I read my meter?

Your meter displays the following pieces of information in sequence:

  • A segment test where all parts of the display are turned on at once to ensure they are still functioning
  • Your kWh consumption in a five-digit format
  • A communications network address identification number for Hydro Ottawa’s use.

Why does my most recent Time-of-Use data consumption change a few days later?

Recent consumption data is considered "unbilled usage" because it has not yet been validated by the provincial Meter Data Management and Repository (MDM/R). The MDM/R is a common platform for processing, storing and managing all Smart Meter data within Ontario. Once your consumption data has been validated and obtained from the MDM/R, the values may change.

The following message appears on all Time-of-Use pages: 

*Note: Unbilled electricity consumption has not been loss-adjusted and may contain estimated data.

What if some of my consumption isn't appearing in my account history?

Occasionally there may be communication difficulties between your meter and Hydro Ottawa's meter data collectors. Metering data is stored within your meter and may be collected once the connection is re-established. Contact us if this problem persists.

Why does my account no longer show Time-of-Use information?

Time-of-Use information will only appear if your online account is active.

If you’ve closed your electricity account and moved to a new location within our service territory, you can add your new electricity account to your existing online account profile. This will allow you to view Time-of-Use data for your new electricity account. You will continue to have access to previous consumption and billing information.

Why am I unable to view my Time-of-Use information after I close my account?

Once you close your account, you may still view up to two years of electricity consumption based on your regular bill intervals. Time-of-use information is only available for active accounts.

 Moving

What should I do if I’m moving to a new address?

If you’re moving to a new address, you will need to fill out our moving request form at least 10 days in advance.

Learn more

Can I reactivate an old account at a new address?

Unfortunately, we are unable to reactivate an old account at a new address. Each account number is unique to the account holder and the service address. The first 10 digits of your account number represent the customer or account holder and the last 10 digits represent the premise. This is to ensure that your account information is accurate.

Customer Service


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