Time of Day Rate RT
Rate RT for residential customers may be a way to lower your bill. Find out if Rate RT is right for you!
Most UI customers are billed at Rate R, and are charged the same price for electricity no matter when it is used. Morning, evening, weekends - it doesn’t matter. Under Rate R the charge is always the same.
Rate RT is different. It is a time-of-day use rate that provides a customer the opportunity to lower their annual electricity costs by using electricity when it costs less. By taking a few moments and learning the on-peak/off-peak schedule and trying to adhere to it, Rate RT can reward the customer with a lower monthly bill.
Rate RT is Simple to Learn
- On Peak – weekdays from 12 noon to 8 PM.
- Off Peak – everything else including weekends.
By concentrating your use to off peak hours you can actually lower your electricity bill.
Before switching to Rate RT, you need to evaluate your own use of electricity. Unfortunately, UI has no time specific information for customers presently using Rate R. We do know, however, that the profile of a customer who can typically save money on Rate RT is:
- Customers that use 75% or more of their electricity in the off-peak hours
- Customers who work full time with no one home during the day
Rate RT is not for everyone and depending upon how and when electricity is used, you could even see your electric bill increase.
Choosing a Rate That's Right For You
Since Rate R customers are not metered (and therefore, not billed) by time of day, examination of lifestyle and consumption habits is necessary to evaluate the opportunity for cost savings.
Consider household energy usage and identify potential areas of peak (daytime) energy demands. What are the primary opportunities for load shifting (using electricity off-peak instead of during on-peak hours) and subsequent cost savings? What factors present the greatest risk of possibly increasing energy costs under Rate RT (using too much electricity during the day)? Some key things to consider include:
- Number of people living in the household and ages
- Members of the household at home during the weekdays
- Household activity during weekdays
- Primary and secondary heat sources
- Water heating source
- Air conditioning use (especially central cooling systems)
- Use of thermostatic controls
- Pool and/ or spa use
- Dehumidification equipment
- Home office equipment
- Condition, age and maintenance of mechanical systems and appliances
- Condition and maintenance of the home’s thermal performance
By auditing household energy requirements, it is likely that a clear pattern of electric use will emerge. This information can assist potential Rate RT consumers determine if their own consumption habits and lifestyles make sense for a time-of-day rate. Are there any “red flags”? An example of a red flag might be a central air conditioning system that is operating during the day. Can the red flag be mitigated or eliminated? How important is it that the system operates during the day? Is it really only needed for a certain period of the day? If so, can the timing be achieved with a programmable thermostat?
To learn more about your energy usage and determine if Rate RT is right for you, use our Online Energy Analyzer.
Using Rate RT to Save Money
Since Rate RT off-peak charges are significantly lower than on-peak charges, it stands to reason that consumers who use more of their electricity during off-peak hours will save the most money. The amount of money saved is also directly related to the amount of electricity consumed. So, a consumer with larger annual electric demands will save more money than a consumer with smaller electric demands under Rate RT, provided that the majority of their consumption is off-peak. On average, most Rate RT consumers save 1 – 8% on their annual electric costs.
Off-Peak vs. On-Peak
The term “Peak”, as it relates to electricity use, refers to the period of critical energy demand during any given day. This “peak period” can generally be described as the time during the day when the consumption of electricity is at its highest point. In UI’s service area, peak electricity demand occurs from late morning until late evening especially in the summer. Using electricity during this time is referred to as on-peak consumption.
Rate RT Offers Seasonal and Time-of-Day Differentiated Charges
Under Rate RT the rate charged during off-peak periods is lower than the rate charged during on-peak, reflecting the fact that the total cost of electricity is lower during the off-peak. This is also true of the seasonal differences in the rate. Rate RT charges are lower during the cooler winter months than during the summer when the demand for electricity is the greatest.
RATE RT SEASONAL AND
TIME-OF-DAY DIFFERENTIATED CHARGES
|Rate/Period||Rate RT||Rate R < 500 kWh||Rate R > 500 kWh|
|Basic Service Charge||$12.84 per Month||$12.84 per Month||$12.84 per Month|
|Summer1 On Peak2||34.6664¢ per kWh||22.5321¢||22.5321¢|
|Summer Off Peak||15.3648¢ per kWh|
|Winter On Peak||31.8348¢ per kWh||21.9551¢||21.9551¢|
|Winter Off Peak||15.6935¢ per kWh|
1 The summer period is June-September, inclusive.
2 As of April 1, 2007, On-Peak hours are 12:00 PM (noon) – 8:00 PM, Monday through Friday
Typical Rate RT Customer
When evaluating Rate RT as a potential money saving option, it is important to understand that consumers who are currently billed under UI’s standard residential rate (Rate R) are not billed by time-of-day. So UI has no information available to determine when potential Rate RT customers actually use the most electricity. Because of this, calculating how much money could be saved with Rate RT can only be estimated.
Identifying how existing Rate RT customers save money can help potential Rate RT customers decide if their lifestyles and consumption habits are similar to those who are already successful. Here’s what’s known about UI’s existing Rate RT customers:
- They have smaller households: The vast majority of customers (95%) who demonstrate the highest savings on Rate RT have one to four person households. Over half report having two person households.
- They work full-time during the weekdays: Almost 80% of current Rate RT customers report working full-time. Almost 50% of customers who have average savings on Rate RT reported working full-time.
- They use the majority of their electricity during off-peak hours: On average, Rate RT customers use at least 75% or more of their electricity during the late evening hours or early morning hours on weekdays or during the weekends.