Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

What are your office hours?

Monday - Friday

8:00am - 5:00pm EST

NOTE: LCUB offices are closed on the following holidays: New Year's Day, Presidents' Day, Good Friday, Memorial Day, Independence Day (2 days), Labor Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving, day after Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day. Exact closing dates are posted at each LCUB location and on our website.

How do I update my information on my account? It is important to keep your contact information current with LCUB. Please contact a Customer Service Representative as soon as possible to update your account.

Where can I find my account number? Your account number is printed on your monthly bill. If you do not have one available, please contact one of our Customer Service Representatives to obtain it.

General Billing Questions

How do I check my balance? You can easily check your balance online, review prior usage and all other account information here. Alternatively, you can contact one of our Customer Service Representatives to obtain this information.

Where do I mail my payments? Payment should be mailed to: LCUB, PO Box 449, Lenoir City, TN 37771

What payment options are available? LCUB offers many convenient ways to pay your bill, including credit card and electronic ACH payments. A list of all available options is available on our Payments Option page.

Why am I assessed a service charge on credit or debit card payments? Merchants must pay a transaction fee and a sale percentage fee on all transactions funded by credit cards. LCUB contracts with an external provider, EDS, who assumes complete liability for all credit card fees and processes all payments. EDS establishes and collects the service fee on all transactions. LCUB does not receive any portion of the fees you pay to use a credit card.

LCUB works diligently to keep our rates as low as possible for our customers and offers credit card payment options through EDS as a convenience for our customers. Free options, such as our Equal Pay Plan and recurring ACH withdrawals are also offered. If you have any questions please contact a Customer Service Representative.

Can I review my billing or usage history? You can easily check your balance and see a history of your prior usage along with all other account information here.

I did not receive my bill. What should I do? The number of billing days in a cycle can vary Typically, billing periods are between 25 and 30 days, depending on holidays and the length of the month. If you have not received a bill, please contact one of our Customer Service Representatives for additional assistance

Does LCUB “estimate” bills? Electric meters record actual usage of electricity at your home or business. LCUB works diligently to accurately read meters every 25 - 30 days. If, for some reason, we are unable to access your meter or extenuating circumstances (e.g., severe weather) prevent us from reading your meter, we estimate your current bill by evaluating prior usage and that month's weather. After the next actual reading, your bill is automatically reconciled and adjusted if our estimate was too high or too low. Either way, you only pay for the services you use. Estimated bills are clearly marked as such.

To ensure that your meters are physically read each month, please ensure that LCUB meter readers have access to your meter, free of obstruction and pets. If, in the rare event, you receive an estimated bill for more than one month, please contact a Customer Service Representative.

What is the Sanitation Charge on my bill? LCUB provides billing services for the City of Lenoir City for trash pickup service. The inclusion of trash pickup service for Lenoir City residents on your utilities bill saves time and money for everyone. Please note that LCUB does not actually perform this service; all questions regarding trash pickup should be directed to the Lenoir City Street and Sanitation Department at (865) 986-2715.

Service Activation Questions

Why must I pay a deposit to activate service? LCUB bills in arrears for actual usage after you have received the benefit of service. Because of this and in accordance with our Service Deposit Policy, LCUB requires a security deposit as a guarantee toward your final utility bill. We also accept a letter of recommendation from a previous utility that states you had one year of service with an excellent payment history.

Why must I pay a service charge to activate service? Service activation charges are assessed by each individual department to help control maintenance costs and to avoid unnecessary rate increases to existing customers for new service installations and activations. Currently, each department charges $25.00 to activate service. If you obtain more than one service from us, you will need to pay a $25.00 service charge for each service. Please contact one of our Customer Service Representatives if you have any questions.

What is a breaker and why must it be off to activate electric service? The electric breaker is a switch located inside, outside, or perhaps both. It turns off power to the entire house so the electric meter can be safely set or reset. LCUB employees are not allowed to enter your home to turn off the breaker.

You are responsible for ensuring that the breaker is turned off prior to your service activation visit. An additional $25.00 service charge will be billed if an LCUB employee must make an additional trip to activate service due to the breaker not being turned off.

Why must an LCUB employee visit my home or business to activate service? Do you not just flip a switch in your office? While technological advances have been substantial over the last several years, LCUB does not have any technology that allows us to press a button for you to receive utility services. We must send an LCUB employee to your physical location to start services.

Service-Specific Billing Questions

Electricity - What is the TVA Monthly Fuel Cost charge? LCUB purchases all of the electricity we distribute from TVA. TVA purchases large amounts of fuel to generate electricity across the seven-state TVA region and recovers the fuel cost associated with generation through a Monthly Fuel Cost

For simplicity, LCUB's electric rates page and customer bills INCLUDE the TVA Monthly Fuel Cost as part of the base rate. As a TVA distributor, LCUB must collect 100% of the TVA Monthly Fuel Cost from customers and remits 100% of all collections to TVA.

The TVA Monthly Fuel Cost FAQ has additional information about why TVA uses this pricing structure and what affects the Monthly Fuel Cost rate

Why do LCUB meter readers drive by my home or business and not read the meter? Are they estimating the bill? LCUB has installed radio frequency meters that allow meter readers to obtain readings within a short distance of the meter. This helps save time and improves accuracy to keep our rates low for our customers. Also, meter readers are very familiar with meters and many have the ability to accurately read them from several feet away.

LCUB is also in the processing of installing an Automated Meter Reading System that allows your meter to remotely communicate with LCUB Administrative Offices to obtain monthly meter readings without dispatching meter readers.

Gas - What is the PGA for natural gas? Your monthly gas bill will reflect the cost of the natural gas that LCUB purchases, as well as the cost of storing, transporting, and delivering that gas. These costs fluctuate due to the deregulated, competitive marketplace. Like virtually all natural gas utilities, LCUB uses a Purchase Gas Adjustment (PGA) to pass along these increases and decreases in gas costs to our customers.

Gas - Why do gas prices fluctuate so much? As a commodity traded on the open market, natural gas prices fluctuate based on the laws of supply and demand. When the nation's demand for gas is greater than the available supply, prices are driven up so that the distributors must pay more for natural gas.

Gas - How does the PGA appear on my bill? LCUB combines the base natural gas rate and the PGA as a single charge on your monthly bill. The actual PGA used for the month appears as a separate line item directly under the gas line item.

Water - Why must I pay sales tax on water? LCUB is required to collect sales tax on residential water sales, as mandated by State Tax Code. According to Tennessee Code Annotated § 67-6-334, energy used for residential use (including gas and electricity) is exempt, but water is not.

Outage Questions

If my service goes out, what should I check? Before contacting LCUB, please check to make sure that your outage is not an onsite problem. For electricity, check your circuit breakers or fuses to see if it's an isolated problem. Check your meter for damaged wires and contact a licensed electrician if you have any questions.

If the outage is not isolated to your home or business, contact LCUB to report the outage.

Does LCUB automatically know when I have lost power? If your home or business has an Automated Meter Reading Systems installed it will provide us with some notification that a customer has lost electric power. Depending on the type of outage, LCUB may be aware of your specific residence, based on the conditions and other prevailing circumstances.

However, to ensure that LCUB knows that your specific address is without service, please contact us to report your outage.

Who do I call if electrical wires have been pulled away from my house? LCUB service agreement outlines that we provide electrical service to your weatherhead (overhead service) or to the secondary spade of the transformer (underground service). You are responsible for repairs from the weatherhead into your home. If wires have been pulled away from your home, contact a qualified electrician to make the repairs.

How do I know if a downed power line is still carrying electricity? You should automatically assume that all downed power lines are energized! Never go near any downed power line. Review our safety information page for important information and contact LCUB immediately at 1-844-687-5282 if you see any downed power lines.

Is power automatically shut off during a tornado? LCUB will not turn off power automatically during a tornado or other severe weather emergency, unless instructed by TVA. For the safety of our crews, we will not attempt to restore service until conditions improve.

What if I have special medical needs that reply on continuous electric service? If you or a family member rely on life-sustaining medical devices in your home, please contact us so we can obtained the required documentation from you. In return, LCUB will notify you if we plan to turn off power to make repairs to our equipment.

Because severe weather and other acts outside of our control could cause interruption to your electrical service for an undetermined amount of time, it's important that you have a backup plan in place to ensure that equipment will continue to operate during an outage.

Please note that providing medical documentation to LCUB will not stop us from disconnecting your power if you do not pay your bill, as outlined in our Service Termination Policy.

Do elected officials, employees, or other VIPs receive special attention during an outage? Absolutely not! LCUB works diligently to restore power to emergency-level providers (hospitals, police department, and other public safety critical areas) first and then works each request according to location and size of outage.

Why would an LCUB service truck pass my house without stopping if I don't have power? The crew could be troubleshooting the cause of the outage or working on a nearby location. Also, the crew may not be aware that your home is without power if you have not reported it to us.

How long does perishable food last after the power goes out? During a power outage, do not open the refrigerator or freezer doors unless absolutely necessary to preserve cooling and to minimize food spoilage. According to the FDA, food stored in a refrigerator will stay cool for about 4 hours if the doors are not opened. Food stocked in a fully-stocked freezer will stay cold for about two days. A half-full freezer will keep items frozen for about one day.

Immediately after service is restored, check the temperatures inside of your refrigerator and freezer. The temperature inside of the refrigerator should be at 40 degrees or below and the freezer should be at 0 degrees or colder. The FDA recommends throwing away all food exposed to temperatures greater than those thresholds during an outage.

Should I purchase a generator to use during an outage? Portable generators provide backup electrical service during an outage, but they do come with risks and operational hazards. Please review our safety information on portable generators before deciding to purchase one.

Water Questions

How do I know that LCUB water is safe for me and my family? Each year, LCUB must create a Consumer Confidence Report (Water Quality Report) based on samples taken during the previous year. This report shows what contaminants, if any, are present in your water.

LCUB posts its most recent report here and mails one to each water customer. EPA provides a list of FAQs to help you better understand the report.