Five reasons to consider switching to a Time of Use plan
East County News Service
June 7, 2018 (San Diego) – San Diego Gas & Electric’s (SDG&E) new Time of Use (TOU) pricing plans are giving residents more choices and control over their energy bills. These plans offer savings for customers who can shift some of their energy use outside the higher cost on-peak hours of 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. According to an SDG&E press release:
As folks get home from work in the late afternoon hours and power from renewable energy production drops, energy demand across California increases, driving up prices. TOU plans offer our customers two ways to save – by shifting electricity use to lower cost hours of the day, before 4 p.m. or after 9 p.m., and/or by reducing overall usage. Over a 24-hour period, customers can take advantage of 19 hours of off-peak, lower prices. TOU plans also encourage a cleaner power grid by using energy when renewable resources, like solar power, are readily available.”
As summer approaches, and energy use and prices typically increase, small shifts in electricity use can make a big difference. By running the dishwasher or doing laundry during off-peak hours, customers can benefit from lower prices and help the environment when enrolled in a TOU plan. Customers that use high amounts of energy due to air conditioners, pool pumps and other devices can lower their monthly bills if they are able to shift the usage of those devices outside of 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
SDG&E is offering a 12-month risk-free trial period for eligible customers who choose a TOU plan. The customer can opt out of these two new plans at any time and SDG&E will credit them back the difference if they would have saved more on the standard plan. Currently, approximately 147,000 residential and 80,000 business customers are enrolled in a TOU plan.
Here are five reasons to switch to a TOU plan:
- More choice and control – standard plans offer only one way to save - by reducing use. TOU plans offer a second way to save by shifting electricity usage outside of 4 p.m. – 9 p.m.
- Risk-free guarantee – customers enrolled in a TOU plan will have bill protection for one year. If they would have saved more on their original plan, SDG&E will credit them for the difference. The risk-free guarantee does not apply to solar customers.
- Small changes, big impact – simple shifts in usage, such as running the dishwasher or doing laundry during off-peak hours, can result in savings.
- Summertime savings – as the weather heats up and pool covers are removed, running pool pumps outside of the 4 p.m. - 9 p.m. peak period can result in savings. If homes or businesses use air conditioning they could also benefit from a TOU plan when adding a smart thermostat. Instant rebates for smart thermostats are available at sdge.com/instant.
- Encourage more renewables – TOU plans reflect more renewable integration such as solar, wind and other clean energy sources.