customer service faqs

eBill

Payment Options

Billing Questions:

Electricity Use:

Reading My Meter

Power Quality

How Do I:

 

eBill

What is CMP’s eBill service?    

eBill is a FREE service from Central Maine Power that lets you view, pay and store up to 12 months of your CMP bills securely online. top ^

How do I sign up for CMP’s eBill Service?
You can sign up for eBill by creating an eCMP account and adding the eBill option.  You will no longer receive a paper bill, but you can now access your bill online.  Plus, you can store, print or download a copy if you need to.  top ^

Getting Started
To sign up for eBill you must:

  • be a current CMP customer
  • have an active checking or savings account
  • have access to a computer with an Internet connection
  • have a valid e-mail address
  • have a web browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, AOL, or other) that supports strong (128-bit) encryption to ensure privacy for your data
    create an eCMP account on our website

Click here to create an eCMP account and follow the simple steps to add eBill to your account.     top ^

Business customers, please note:  If you are a summary billing customer (multiple accounts on one bill) or a customer with a monthly bill that exceeded $50,000 in any of the previous twelve months, eBill service is not available at this time.


How does the eBill service work?
Thousands of CMP customers currently use eBill.  After an initial enrollment, you’ll be able to access your bill and pay online any time, too!   

1.   To enroll (one-time):
Before viewing and paying your CMP bills online, you will be asked to create a profile to confirm your identity and establish your online billing account. You will need to have a current or previous CMP bill handy as you will be asked a series of questions that pertain to the information on your paper bill.  You will also be asked to choose a user name and password which will uniquely identify you within eCMP and the eBill service.

2.   To log in to view and pay your bill:
Once you have enrolled, you will be able to make a payment immediately under your new profile. You will receive an e-mail message when your next CMP bill is available to view and pay online. We recommend that you schedule your payment date at least four business days before the actual bill due date to allow time for processing. Once a payment is scheduled, it appears in your list of scheduled payments until it is processed. It then appears in your payment history with a status of “Paid.”     top ^

 

How secure is my billing and personal information?
We use several methods to ensure that your information is secure.

  • User Name and Password: Your user name and password are unique identifiers that only you know. Keep them private so others can’t sign onto CMP’s site and access your account.
  • Encryption: CMP uses 128-bit encryption (data coding) to make your information unreadable as it passes over the Internet. You may need to upgrade your web browser (see below) to accommodate this security feature.     top ^


Do I need any special hardware or software to sign up?
No special hardware is required to use our eBill service. An internet browser with 128-bit (strong) encryption is required. You can check your encryption and update your internet browser in the following way:

  • For Microsoft Internet Explorer users: Internet Explorer users can check your encryption level by choosing “About Internet Explorer” from the Help menu. If the cipher strength is not 128-bit, you can upgrade your browser by visiting the following site: http://www.microsoft.com/windows/ie/downloads/recommended/128bit/default.asp
  • For Netscape Navigator users: Netscape users should point their browser to the following site: http://isp.netscape.com/software/download2.jsp.  It will display your current version and encryption level. If you do not have 128-bit (strong) encryption, follow the instructions to download and upgrade the 128-bit encryption version of your current browser.
  • For America Online users: America Online users should go to “keyword” and type in “128 browser”, and then follow the instructions provided by AOL.     top ^


Please note that browser upgrades can be very large files and require significant time to download, varying with the speed of your Internet connection. You may wish to contact your Internet Service Provider for assistance.


After enrolling for the eBill service, when can I start paying my CMP bill?
After enrolling, you can make an online payment immediately for your current bill. Look for “Don’t have an online bill yet? You can still make a payment here.” at the bottom of the View and Pay Online Bill page.  Your bill will be available in eBill starting with your next billing cycle and sent electronically to the e-mail address you provided when you signed up for eBill.  After that, eBill will follow your normal billing cycle.     top ^


What if I forget my password?
You can reset your password at the eCMP page. At the login screen, click the “Forgot your Password?” link. You will be prompted to answer your security question and provide your e-mail address.  If you continue to have trouble with your password, please call the CMP Customer Relations Center at 1-800-750-4000 (for residential customers) or 1-800-565-3181 (for commercial customers).     top ^


Will I be charged a fee for paying my bill online?
There is no charge for paying your bill online - and you save the cost of a stamp!     top ^


Will I still receive a paper copy of my CMP bill through the U.S. mail?
No, eBill is a paperless billing service so you will no longer receive a paper bill in the mail. You will be able to view and print up to 12 months of bill history online, and you can save a copy of your bill if you need to keep older bills for your records.     top ^


If I am an AutoPay customer, can I stay on AutoPay and be an eBill customer as well?
Yes, you can enjoy all the convenience of online billing and automatic payments. Now, with our new eBill service, you can select the way you want to pay your bill.  There are more payment methods to choose from and it’s easy to set up!

To take advantage of these new features immediately after signing up for eBill, we will remove your account from our AutoPay Program and cancel all scheduled payments from the next business day forward.  Then, within eCMP, you can re-establish your automatic monthly payment as you’d like. Automatic payments will be effective with the first eBill you receive.  Each month thereafter your payments will be automatically deducted as you’ve instructed.

Please pay your current paper bill as your automatic payment will start with your next eBill. Click here to make a single, convenient online payment using the payment method of your choice.

If you have any questions, please send us an e-mail and we’ll be happy to assist you.   

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Payment Options

Can I pay the same amount each month?
Yes, you can. Our SimplePay program lets you make a level monthly payment based on your average monthly electricity usage over the past year.  You'll get a bill for the same amount each month, so you'll always know what your bill will be.

Plus, once you sign up for SimplePay, we'll lock in your payment amount for the next six months!  We'll review your account every six months to make sure your payment amount is still accurate and working for you.

There are no hidden fees or costs - this service is FREE!  You’re free to go off the plan at any time, so there’s no risk.  Join the thousands of Mainers who open a stable electricity bill every month with SimplePay.

To enroll in our SimplePay plan, give us a call today at 1-800-750-4000, or fill out the online form here.     top ^

 

If I need more time to pay my bill, what can I do?

Please call us at 1-800-750-4000! We’ll review your account and work with you to make an arrangement.

Click here to see a list of local Community Action agencies in your area that may be able to help you.     top ^

 

Can I pay my bill automatically each month?

You can have your payment automatically withdrawn from your checking or savings account by signing up for our paperless billing program eBill.     top ^


Billing Questions

How do I read my bill?

Click here for help understanding your bill.     top ^
 

Why are there different charges on my bill?

Your electric bill reflects the costs of service from two companies - your electricity supplier and CMP, your electricity delivery company.  Read more...     top ^

 

Why does the number of days I am billed for vary each month?

The number of days in a billing cycle may vary between 28 to 33 days, depending on holidays and the number of days in each month.     top ^

 

How does CMP estimate my usage?

Most of the time, your estimate is based on your history of electricity usage at your address. Our estimation process starts by looking at your usage for the same month last year. If you have not been at your residence for a full year, the estimate is based on the previous month’s usage, adjusted for the time of year of the estimated bill.     top ^ 

 

Why do you estimate the usage on my bill?

We make every attempt to read your meter every month. In fact, thanks to smart meters, only 0.5% of over 7 million meter readings last year were estimates. Sometimes emergencies, including extreme weather conditions, prevent us from getting an actual meter reading. 

 
For customers choosing non-standard meters, we read their meters every other month
and estimate usage for the alternate months.   top ^ 

 

Why would you bill me for a full month when my power was out for days due to a major storm?

Major outage events are rare and our estimation program is built for normal operational situations. Meters measure usage on an ongoing basis and cumulatively over time.  So, when we estimate your usage at a given point in time, the next actual read will show actual cumulative usage.  Rest assured, even if we do have to estimate your usage for a month, we will obtain an actual read the next month and over the course of those two months, you will be billed only for the power you actually used. If at any point in time you believe your estimated usage is incorrect, please contact us to discuss.  We want to make sure we are billing you for what you used – no more, no less.   top ^

 

I looked at my hourly usage and it shows that I used power during the outage I had during the storm - why?

Again, this is rare but you are right, it does occur and is confusing for our customers. If you experienced an outage, you were definitely not using power and were not charged for power that you did not use. You are not billed on the hourly intervals displayed in Energy Manager, instead you are billed based on the total usage for the month – we take a reading at the beginning of the month and subtract that from the reading at the end of the month and bill difference.   top ^

Energy Manager presents usage for a time period (day or hour) by subtracting the previous meter read from the current meter read to determine usage in the last time period.  If we do not receive all of the hourly meter readings from your meter then Energy Manager averages any usage during the missing time period over all of the missing intervals.  In some cases the missing intervals come in through our system later and if they do the Energy Manager is updated with your actual usage. 

 

Is there anything I can do to avoid an estimated meter reading?

For our customers with standard smart meters, an estimate is rare. You can, however, avoid any fluctuations in your monthly bill amounts by enrolling in our SimplePay plan. The actual cost of your annual electricity use is divided into equal monthly payments so you know exactly what your bill will be every month.  Enroll on our website cmpco.com.

Customers who have chosen non-standard meters are always welcome to select a smart meter which provides a reading every month. You may also provide a meter reading yourself on the alternate months using our automated phone system. Please have your account number ready and dial 800-750-4000 and choose option 6 and then option 2.   top ^

 

Electric Use

Why is my bill different than my neighbors?

Every home and family is different and each household has its own unique energy needs.  Different lifestyles, appliances (models and age), heating systems, home construction, family size and age all affect the amount of electricity you use.    back to top

 

How can I determine how much I am spending for various appliances or tasks?

Our online Home Energy Calculator  will provide you with an estimated cost to run your appliances.  Understanding how you use electricity in your home is the first step to managing it.     top ^ 

 

How can I get an energy audit?

Efficiency Maine sponsors a program for residential customers called Maine Home Performance. This program puts you in touch with a local Home Performance Evaluator who completes a site visit and provides tips on making your home more energy efficient.
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Reading My Meter

How do I read my meter?

Reading your meter is simple, takes just a few minutes, and can help you understand what’s using power and when.  We provide detailed instructions on how to read your meter here.    top^

 

Power Quality

Why are my digital clocks blinking when I come home?

Your clocks are blinking because of a momentary power interruption, most likely caused from a tree branch coming into contact with electrical wires. Sometimes, a small branch that comes in contact with a wire will clear on its own (fall to the ground for example). Other times, a device called a recloser is used to protect the circuit and help prevent a longer power outage.   top^


When will CMP be trimming the trees along my road?

Each year, CMP’s qualified contractors prune and remove trees along hundreds of miles of public roads to provide you with safe, reliable electric service.  Because protecting the health of your trees in important, our Tree Care standards are endorsed by the Tree Care Industry Association.  We schedule our Tree Care crews to rotate throughout the service area to maintain all 20,000 miles of power lines.  You can view this year’s Tree Trimming Schedule on our Web site. 

Of course, if trees cause outages or pose an immediate hazard to safety or service reliability, we must take immediate action.  Emergency tree trimming will be completed when there is:

  • A broken limb directly over wires.
  • An uprooted tree directly over primary wires, and burning or sparking lines.    top^


How Do I:

Establish electric service in my name?

Please call us at 1-800-750-4000. We’ll need your name, premise address, mailing address, ID information, and if possible, the name of the prior occupant or account number.  When you apply for service, we’ll explain CMP’s costs to you.    top^

 

Have my lines covered so I can do home repairs?

Based on visual inspection, we will install a cover-up for your protection where the service connects to your home or business.  Please call us in advance of your project and allow at least 10 business days for us to install the cover-up. Also, please call us when you are done with your project so that we can remove the cover up.

  • Residential customers: call 1-800-750-4000
  • Commercial customers: call 1-800-565-3181    top^


 Move my electric meter?

We can temporarily detach your meter enclosure away from your home while you are working on a project.  Please call our Customer Service Center at 1-800-750-4000 for residential, or
1-800-565-3181 for business customers, and we will respond to your request in 10 business days.  Once your project is completed, give us a call and we’ll have the meter back in place within 10 business days.    top^
 

Close my seasonal home?

Leaving your seasonal home for an extended period of time means you want to protect it and minimize electricity usage.  Follow these tips to button up your seasonal home and rest easier when you’re not there.    top^