Having Power Reconnected
The Ontario Energy Board has issued a Decision and Order banning electricity distributors from disconnecting or threatening to disconnect homes for non-payment from November 15 to April 30 every year.
If a home has been disconnected for more than six months, ESA is required to do an electrical inspection before power can be reconnected by the utility. This is to address electrical safety hazards that may have developed during that time, including serious fire or shock hazards that could seriously injure or kill someone. If you require an electrical inspection before power can be reconnected to your home, please call the Customer Service Centre at 1-877-372-7233 to book an inspection.
Preparing to have your electrical service reconnected
Before your electric utility reconnects power to the home, do the following safety checks:
- Make sure all appliances are turned to the off position. In particular, check stoves and ovens.
- Clear any combustible materials – paper, clothing, plastic bags, blankets, etc – away from electrical outlets and appliances particularly those with elements e.g. ovens, stoves, space heaters, etc.
- Make sure nothing is on the elements of the stove that could burn such as papers, plastic or cloth.
- Make sure baseboard heaters are clear of any household items or debris.
- Turn your furnace and/or central air conditioning system to off and wait until power is restored before turning on.
- Make sure your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms have fresh batteries and test them to ensure they are working.
When Power Has Been Reconnected
Gradually turn on your heating and cooling system, appliances and electronics and monitor them initially. Look for any warning signs of potential problems with your electrical system:
- dim, flickering or surging lights
- fuses that repeatedly blow or breakers that repeatedly trip
- outlets that don’t work when the fuse is replaced or breaker is reset
- switches or fuses that are hot to the touch (turn them off immediately)
- a hot, burning smell where you can’t find the source
If you have concerns, contact your electrical utility or if you suspect danger call 911.
If Your Electricity Has Been Off for More Than Six Months
If your electricity has been disconnected for more than six months, an inspection by the Electrical Safety Authority is required to make sure your electrical system is safe before power can be reconnected. Please contact ESA at 1-877-372.7233 to arrange your inspection.
Preparing for Your Reconnection Inspection
- The ESA Inspector will need someone to provide access to your home to review potential electrical risks.
- Ensure the inspector can access your electrical panel (make sure there is a clear path to and in front of the panel).
- If the ESA Inspector finds serious electrical hazards in your home, you will need to have them repaired before ESA will authorize your electric utility to reconnect power.]
- Within 24-48 hours of your inspection, ESA will send you a list of any other electrical defects that require repair. Contact a Licensed Electrical Contractor to complete these repairs. You can find Licensed Electrical Contractors here.
Contact a Licensed Electrical Contractor right away to help you identify and repair electrical issues.