Frequently Asked Questions UCEMC 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Do you offer convenient ways to pay my bill?

    Pay at our Offices:

    You may pay your electric bill or conduct business at our UCEMC district offices between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding observed holidays.

    Pay at our Drive Thru:

    The Drive-thru is available for bill paying only. You may pay with cash, check, or money order. Account number or bill is required at the drive-thru.

    Pay by Night Depository:

    Bills may also be paid after office hours in the night depository at each district office. Payments do not post in real-time. Payments are posted the next business morning and backdated to the previous business day.

    Pay at the Bank:

    Payments can be made by check or money order (bill required) at the following participating banks:

    • First Freedom Bank, 376 West Jackson St., Cookeville, TN 38501
    • One Bank, 404 Main St., Baxter TN 38544
    • First Freedom Bank, 614 West Main St., Algood, TN 38506
    • Citizens Bank, 116 South Grundy Quarles Hwy., Gainesboro, TN 38562
    • First Freedom Bank, 307 East Hull Ave., Gainesboro, TN 38562
    • American Bank and Trust, 808 West Main St., Livingston, TN 38570
    • One Bank, 1477 West Main St., Livingston, TN 38570
    • Regions Bank, 120 South Public Square, Smithville, TN 37166

    Payments made at banks do not post in real-time but will be posted as of the date stamped on the remit slip by the bank.

    Pay by Mail:

    Payments mailed in will be posted as of the postmark date stamped on the envelope by the post office.

    Pay at Kiosks:

    Payment Kiosks are available 24/7 at the following locations:

    • Carthage Corporate Office, 907 Main St. North, Carthage, TN 37030
    • Cookeville District Office, 1794 West Broad St., Cookeville, TN 38501

    Kiosks accept cash, check, and credit or debit card. Payments made at kiosks post immediately. Credit and debit card payments charge an additional 2.45%. Cash and check payments charge $0.50. Coins are not accepted, and the kiosk will not give change back.

    Pay by Phone:

    Payments may be made by phone at 800-261-2940 and selecting Option 2 to pay bills or get account information. Account will automatically be looked up by the phone number you are calling from, provided that the same phone number is listed on your account. Listen to and follow instructions if you wish to pay on a different account. We can look up accounts with either an account number or the phone number associated with an account.

    You may pay with a credit or debit card for an additional 2.45% or e-check for an additional $1.00 per transaction. To pay by e-check over the phone, you must first set up a payment profile for the e-check account under Pay My Bill on the homepage. Payments made by phone will post immediately.

    Pay Online:

    You can make payments online at our Official Website at www.ucemc.com or our app, UCEMC. An online account must be created first using your account number, and a valid email address must be on file to complete the online account process. Call 800-261-2940 to speak with your district office to update or add an email address to your account. You may pay by debit or credit card for an additional 2.45% or e-check for $1.00 per transaction. Payments can be posted immediately or may be scheduled for a future date. It is recommended that you do not pay your bill through a DOX site, which poses as a UCEMC website. This website is not associated with UCEMC, will charge an additional fee, and might pay your bill late or not at all. Please use our OFFICIAL WEBSITE here at ucemc.com for all of your UCEMC transactions for your safety and security.

    Pay by Autopay:

    You may also sign up for AutoPay through the website or app. AutoPay is available with an e-check, debit, or credit card. Auto payments will still be charged the additional fee (2.45% for debit or credit card, or $1.00 per e-check). You may schedule automatic payments for any date of the month. The Autopay date you choose needs to be scheduled on or before the billing due date to avoid late fees or service interruption. AutoPay is not available for our Power Your Way members.

    Pay by Bank Draft:

    Bank Draft is another auto-payment option. Bank Draft does not charge any additional fees. Once on Bank Draft, the bill amount will deduct from the checking or savings account provided on the billing due date. If the due date falls on the weekend or an observed holiday, the payment will draft the business day afterward. You must complete the Bank Draft form to begin. A voided check from the account you wish to draft from will need to be attached to the completed form. If you do not have checks for your bank account, you may get a letter from your bank stating the account information (name, address, account type, routing number, and account number). The letter must be on bank letterhead and signed by a bank official. If you do not have your signature witnessed by a UCEMC employee, two forms of I.D. will need to be included to verify your identity. If you are drafting from an account with a different authorized user from your electric account holder, the authorized user of the bank account will have to be present in the office to sign or send in two forms of I.D. for verification. The bank draft is not available for our Power Your Way members.

    Pay Where you Shop:

    You can now pay where you shop (at participating locations) with UCEMC CheckOut. Learn more at Pay My Bill>Pay Where Your Shop

    -Get the barcodeVisit ucemc.com and follow the instructions to download your barcode. Please print out the barcode or retain it on your mobile device.

    -Separate transaction. The UCEMC bill payment is a separate transaction, and your retailer scans the barcode at the register and completes the transaction before you can ring up other items. It’s quick and easy but is a separate transaction.

    -Find a store near you. Visit ucemc.sedccheckout.com for store locationsBusiness chains such as CVS Pharmacy, Dollar General, 7Eleven, Walgreens, and Family Dollar are just a few businesses where you can pay your UCEMC bill while shopping. More than 50,000 retailers nationwide are participating in the CheckOut system.

    -Scan the barcode. As you pay for your goods in the checkout line, scan the barcode you’ve saved on your mobile phone or have printed out.

    -At this time, UCEMC CheckOut only accepts cash payments. There is a $1.50 fee for using the service. UCEMC CheckOut locations cannot view or look up member account details.

    -Get real-time verification. Once your bill is paid, you’ll get real-time verification that your payment has been approved. UCEMC also receives verification, and your account is updated.

  • Why was my bill so much higher this month?

    When extreme temperatures are sustained over a long period, many members increase their energy consumption. Heating and cooling can account for more than half of a member’s electric bill. The HVAC unit is running longer during prolonged periods of extremely cold or extremely hot weather because it’s struggling to keep a comfortable temperature inside your home.

  • But I use gas to heat my home, why would the electric bill be high?

    Gas furnaces typically have blowers that are electric-powered, helping move the hot air through the ductwork. With extremely cold temperatures, those gas furnaces were running for long periods to help maintain the desired temperature inside. If you use an electric humidifier during the extreme cold to compensate for the extremely dry heat from your gas furnace, that could also add to increased electric consumption.

  • Do space heaters make my bill higher?

    Space heaters can heat a small area for a short time, but long-term use can lead to substantial energy consumption and cost. Check out our NEWS YOU CAN USE tab on the UCEMC website for the complete story.

  • Are rates higher than before?

    UCEMC is a member-owned, not-for-profit electric cooperative with rates approximately 20% lower than the national average. 82 cents of every dollar collected by UCEMC is paid to Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) for power used by our members. The remaining 18 cents is used to operate the cooperative.

  • I'm signed up for a bank draft on my UCEMC account. Why does my bill show a "penalty" amount due if I don't pay the bill on time?

    If your electric bill is automatically drafted from your bank account, the transaction is completed each month on the due date. You will never be charged a penalty. HOWEVER, some UCEMC members utilize other ways to pay, which allow them to schedule their payment on a date they choose. The "penalty" amount on the bill reminds those members that any bill paid past the due date is subject to a late fee or penalty.

  • How do UCEMC’s rates compare to other utilities?

    UCEMC’s rates are about 20% below the national average. Our full rate structure can be viewed here:

  • How can I better manage and budget my energy bills each month?

    You can save money with tips and tools to lower your energy usage. Check out our conservation tips featured throughout the UCEMC webpage. UCEMC offers Budget Billing to its residential members in equal monthly amounts for electric service at that specific location. The equal monthly amount is based on the member’s past use history, credit experience and other sources of information for future use at this location. The Budget Billing form can be reviewed here. Budget Billing Form. Also please check out energy savings tips here.

  • Have rates gone up?

    During the hottest days of summer and the bitter-cold days of winter, there is a common misconception that electric cooperatives increase the rates to make a profit. Upper Cumberland Electric Membership Corporation is a not-for-profit, owned by those it serves, and has rates approximately 20% lower than the national average. 82 cents of every dollar collected by UCEMC is paid to Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) for the power used by our members and the remaining 18 cents is used to operate the cooperative. Additional information regarding rates is available in our NEWSROOM.

  • What else could contribute to high electric bills?

    Do you have a heat pump? During extremely low temperatures, heat pumps switch to auxiliary or emergency heat to help heat the home and when activated, that can draw up to three times the amount of electricity. Reduce the temperature on your water heater for savings of 7 to 11%! Set the thermostat to the “normal” setting or 120 degrees, unless the owner’s manual for a dishwasher requires a higher setting. Make sure you turn off the breaker to your water heater before opening the panels. Insulate the first five feet of pipe coming out of the top of your water heater; or the entire length until the pipe goes into the wall if that is less than five feet. Check the lighting. Install Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFLs). CFLs are a good choice for home lighting because they use less energy than incandescent bulbs, produce the same output, and last up to 10 times longer. Each bulb can save $40 or more in electricity costs over its lifetime. Learn more about energy savings tips here.

  • I use a space heater on the coldest days, why is my electric bill so high?

    Using a space heater over long periods of time – especially in a large room - can lead to substantial energy costs. For example, a 1,500-watt space heater operating 12 hours a day will cost almost $50 each month. For more information on appliance energy costs and consumption visit ENERGY.GOV.

  • I use gas to heat my home, why is my electric bill so high?

    Gas furnaces have electric-powered blowers to move the hot air through the ductwork. To help maintain the desired temperature in your home, the furnace is running for longer periods of time. Electric humidifiers used during extremely cold weather could also add to increased energy consumption. Be sure to replace heating and cooling system filters once a month. Dirty filters restrict airflow and increase energy use. Keeping the unit clean and properly adjusted will reduce energy use and save up to 5% on heating and cooling costs. Keep forgetting to do that? Tip: get in the habit of replacing your filter when you receive your monthly electric bill.

  • Why is my bill higher this month?

    Heating and cooling account for more than half of an average member’s electric bill. One way to save is to turn down your thermostat to 68 degrees (or lower) in the winter. Every degree of setback for eight hours a day can reduce heating bills by 1-3%. In the summer, turn up your thermostat to 78 degrees (or higher) in the summer. Every degree you raise your thermostat for eight hours a day in the summer can reduce cooling bills by 3-5%. Your HVAC unit runs longer during prolonged periods of extremely hot and bitterly cold weather because it’s working to keep your home interior at the temperature you have chosen on the thermostat.

  • If my power goes out, how do I report it?

    If you experience a power outage, call your local UCEMC office immediately:

  • How do I become a UCEMC member?

    To become a member of UCEMC, you’ll need to fill out the New Service Application linked below and provide a photo I.D. and another official form of identification.

    Signing up for your new service is easy!

    1. Fill out the Membership Application and provide the two official forms of I.D. as requested.                       
    1. Fill out the Proof of Occupancy Form. 
    1. Provide proof of property ownership (Deed) or Lease Agreement.

     Scan and email, fax, or mail copies of your completed documents to the UCEMC district office near you:

    District Office Links:

  • How do I apply for Residential Service, What forms are required, and how much will it cost to connect service in my name?

    A new member must submit a Residential Application, as well as a Proof of Occupancy form: 

    • Member will also need to provide two forms of identification, such as a Driver’s License, Social Security card, or business identification, and the completed Proof of Occupancy form.

    Member may submit the application and documents in one of the following ways:

    In-person at one of our district offices:

    • Carthage - 138 Gordonsville Hwy., Carthage, TN 37030
    • Cookeville - 1794 W. Broad Street, Cookeville, TN 38501
    • Gainesboro - 1085 N. Grundy Quarles Hwy., Gainesboro, TN  38562
    • Livingston - 320 Celina Hwy., Livingston, TN 38570 

    Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Fax to the District office nearest the new construction:

    • Cookeville – 931-526-7494
    • Carthage – 615-735-0610
    • Gainesboro – 931-268-2125
    • Livingston – 931-823-1333

    If submitting by email or fax, please allow 1-2 business days for UCEMC to contact you.

    Once we have received the application and necessary documents, UCEMC will run a credit history to determine fees. See board policy No 5-13 R-24:

    Documents

  • How do I disconnect service?

    Please contact your UCEMC district office nearest you by phone - 1-800-261-2940 -  or in-person M-F hours: 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Same day service is not gauranteed.

  • How do I apply for residential service?

    We’re glad you’re here and look forward to providing reliable, safe power to your new home. Upper Cumberland Electric Membership Corporation offers four district office locations to serve you and many convenient ways to pay your bill. Our friendly representatives are standing by to answer your questions.

    One call does it all if you need us: 1-800-261-2940 or e-mail us at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

    To become a member of UCEMC, you’ll need to fill out the New Service Application linked below and provide a photo I.D. and another official form of identification.

    Signing up for your new service is easy!

    1. Fill out the Membership Application and provide the two official forms of I.D. as requested.                       
    1. Fill out the Proof of Occupancy Form. 
    1. Provide proof of property ownership (Deed) or Lease Agreement.

     Scan and email, fax, or mail copies of your completed documents to the UCEMC district office near you:

    District Office Links:

  • How do I apply for commercial service?

    A new member must submit a Commercial Application, Proof of Occupancy form, as well as the General Power Deposit Agreement:

    • Member will also need to provide two forms of identification – such as a driver’s license a business ID, Social Security card, or credit card, and the Proof of Occupancy form:

    The application and documents may be submitted in one of the following ways:

    In-person at one of our district offices: 

    • Carthage - 138 Gordonsville Hwy., Carthage, TN 37030
    • Cookeville - 1794 W. Broad Street, Cookeville, TN 38501
    • Gainesboro - 1085 N. Grundy Quarles Hwy. Gainesboro, TN 38562
    • Livingston - 320 Celina Hwy., Livingston, TN 38570

    Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Fax to the District office nearest the new construction:

    • Cookeville – 931-526-7494
    • Carthage – 615-735-0610
    • Gainesboro – 931-268-2125
    • Livingston – 931-823-1333

    If submitting by email or fax, please allow 1-2 business days for UCEMC to contact you.

    Once we have received the application and documents, UCEMC will determine the necessary deposit and fees. See board policy No 5-13 R-24 for General Power Customers.

    Document Links:

     

  • How do I begin the process for new construction service?

    A Residential Load Sheet or a Commercial Load Sheet must be completed with an assigned 911 address for all new construction.

    Submit in person:

    • Carthage District - 138 Gordonsville Hwy., Carthage, TN  37030
    • Cookeville District - 1794 W. Broad Street, Cookeville, TN 38501
    • Gainesboro District - 1085 N. Grundy Quarles Hwy., Gainesboro, TN 38562
    • Livingston District - 320 Celina Hwy., Livingston, TN 38570

    Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Fax to the District office nearest the new construction:

    • Cookeville – 931-526-7494
    • Carthage – 615-735-0610
    • Gainesboro – 931-268-2125
    • Livingston – 931-823-1333

    Once the load sheet is received by UCEMC, the engineering department will be in contact with you within 48 hours.

    The engineering department will determine additional fees and documents that may be required for new construction, temporary service, OH and UG lines, etc.

    There must be an account setup with UCEMC Customer service for each member to be installed For new members, please see HOW TO APPLY FOR RESIDENTIAL or COMMERCIAL SERVICE FAQ's

  • How do I get a permit for an electrical inspection?

    A permit for an electrical inspection can be obtained by contacting the state online at TN Department of Commerce & Insurance Website

    Please contact your local UCEMC office for more details.