Avoiding the energy rush – Time of use matters

Did you know that when you use electricity often matters as much as how much electricity you consume?

It’s no surprise that electricity use fluctuates throughout the day based on consumer demand, and electric co-ops must be able to provide enough electricity to meet the energy demands of their members during times of highest energy use, also known as “on-peak hours.” Early-morning hours, when people often start their day, and evening hours, when people return to their homes after work, are common times for on-peak hours. To reduce peak energy demand and save money, many electric co-ops encourage electricity use during off-peak hours––when energy is less expensive to provide. Similar to saving money by attending a matinee, you can keep more money in your wallet simply by using electricity during an off-peak time period.

Using less on-peak power means lower costs for McDonough Power––and ultimately, lower rates for members.

By performing some of your daily chores, like running the dishwasher or doing laundry during off-peak hours, you can save on your utility bill. In a similar vein, plug electronic equipment, such as computers, printers, TVs and power tools into a power strip, then turn it off during peak hours.  Off-peak hours are from 9:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. daily Monday through Friday, and all day on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays. 

You can also put technology to work for you. If you have a programmable thermostat, adjust the settings so your heating/cooling system syncs up with the off-peak rate periods. Use automatic timers to run hot tubs, pool pumps, water heaters and other appliances in the same way.

Saving energy can be simple. Remember, by shifting your energy use to off-peak times, you have the power to save the Cooperative money, which in turn reflects on your monthly energy bill.