Time-of-Use (TOU) Rates, set by the Ontario Energy Board (OEB), typically May 1 and Nov 1 of each year will be applied on electricity usage based on the time of day, or day of the week in which electricity is consumed. The rates set by the OEB are based on demand and production costs. When the demand and costs are high, the rates will be higher, when the costs reduce, so will the rates.

There are three TOU periods: off-peak, mid-peak and on-peak. Prices are lowest during off-peak, higher during mid-peak and highest during on-peak. In Ontario, time-of-use rates vary according to demand. As daytime begins, more people turn on their lights and appliances, and businesses begin their operations for the workday. These create high demand times for electricity. As the demand for electricity rises, the price increases.

People also use electricity differently depending on the season, so the OEB has established two sets of time-of-use rate periods: summer and winter.


The summer rate period begins May 1 and ends October 31. In the summer, electricity peaks during the hottest part of the afternoon. On-peak hours are mid-day. PLEASE NOTE: On weekends and holidays the cheapest rates are in effect all day.


The winter rate period begins November 1 and ends April 30. In winter, less daylight means electricity use peaks twice: once in the morning when people wake up, and once when people get home from work. PLEASE NOTE: On weekends and holidays the cheapest rates are in effect all day.

The current energy time bands and rates as set by the OEB follow the WINTER RATE PERIOD:

Please note that the rates quoted below are as of November 1st, 2019 and relate to only the electricity cost on your bill. They do not include delivery, regulatory charges or the debt retirement charge.

See the current TOU period and price on the Ontario Ministry of Energy website.

2019 holiday schedule

Day of off-peak pricing Holiday
Wednesday, January 1 New Year’s Day
Monday, February 17 Family Day
Friday, April 10 Good Friday
Monday, May 18 Victoria Day
Wednesday, July 1 Canada Day
Monday, August 3 Civic Holiday
Monday, September 7 Labour Day
Monday, October 12 Thanksgiving Day
Friday, December 25 Christmas Day
Monday, December 28 Boxing Day

Electricity used on weekends and holidays is charged the off-peak price during both the Winter and Summer periods. This page lists the holidays when off-peak prices are in effect. Note: If a holiday falls on a weekend, the following Monday will have off-peak prices in effect all day.

TOU Time Bands and Rates, places the management of electricity costs in the hands of the individual consumer, at the same time reducing the strain on the electricity system and helping the environment. As an example, doing laundry on the weekend or running your dishwasher after 7 pm in the evening on weekdays will reduce your electricity costs as you will pay the Off Peak Rates.

Essex Powerlines has a Web based Presentment tool in place to allow you to securely view and track your electricity use by the hour, the day after the energy was consumed.

To learn more about how to take advantage of Time-of-Use Prices, your electricity costs, reduce the strain on the electricity system and help the environment download Introducing Time-of-Use Rates, a Quick Guide.

To assist in shifting your electricity use to see the difference it can make to your bill, visit Kilowatt Way
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