Cutting power use to the bone.

   / Cutting power use to the bone. #1  

Diggin It

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Between LEDs and a number of other measures, I've cut power use this year more than I expected to be able to. I keep a spreadsheet of daily and monthly usage and so far, 4 out of the 8 months this year have been the lowest usage since I started keeping track at the beginning of 2016.

Yet the bill each month is still higher.
 
   / Cutting power use to the bone. #3  
Total bill or energy usage? I'm finding that its the "Electric System Charge" thats going up. Probably due to the increased rates the utility has to pay for insurance? Its a full third of our bill in the summer. Nothing you do, is going to change that.
 
   / Cutting power use to the bone. #4  
We had a big surcharge this summer. I think our rate was doubled to almost 14 cents during peak hours.

having kids at home runs up my bill. I need to either use or unplug my 2nd fridge.
 
   / Cutting power use to the bone. #5  
My bill has a renewable energy surcharge. Means power company is required to buy power from gov't subsidized solar farms at a higher price than they can make it for. AND there's another solar farm being built nearby. It will not get better if gov't gets further involved.
 
   / Cutting power use to the bone. #6  
I don't know how the remainder of country handles energy but there's countless rips (retail energy providers) basically brokers in Texas. You are allowed to change rip once per year or pay a fee for breaking contract. Choosing a rip is a minefield. If you use less one month than agreed on contract the cost per kw can double,triple or cut in half and/or surcharges can be added or avoided. Going over is the same deal with all kinds of provisions in between. Making sense of it is like Abbott and Costello's Whos on first.
 
   / Cutting power use to the bone. #7  
My power usage according to the meter hasn't changed in years. But this year my power bill went up by 30%. Power company says it needs the extra revenue to pay for "upgrades" to bring us more "green" energy. (Legislators met and mandated 50% of all energy must be from renewables by 2030.)

This is the "cheaper" energy we were all promised.
 
   / Cutting power use to the bone. #8  
Between LEDs and a number of other measures, I've cut power use this year more than I expected to be able to. I keep a spreadsheet of daily and monthly usage and so far, 4 out of the 8 months this year have been the lowest usage since I started keeping track at the beginning of 2016.

Yet the bill each month is still higher.
Congratulations on lowering your power use! When we switched lighting and replaced our older appliances, it made a huge difference to our power consumption. Our old refrigerator was an absolute energy sink. Replacing it dropped out bill by 40%.

We can control the amount we consume, even if we can't control the rate(s)the utilities charge us. The costs here are a reflection of the state public utility commission guaranteeing a 10% return on investment to the utility shareholders for capital projects. That incentivizes the utilities to build big, whether or not investment is needed, or has an ROI.
Here is one of our current rates:

IMG_1112.jpeg


High rates certainly make it easier to see the pay back in more efficient appliances and bulbs.

All the best,

Peter
 
   / Cutting power use to the bone. #9  
I don't know how the remainder of country handles energy but there's countless rips (retail energy providers) basically brokers in Texas. You are allowed to change rip once per year or pay a fee for breaking contract. Choosing a rip is a minefield. If you use less one month than agreed on contract the cost per kw can double,triple or cut in half and/or surcharges can be added or avoided. Going over is the same deal with all kinds of provisions in between. Making sense of it is like Abbott and Costello's Whos on first.
Every place where I’ve lived, we have rural electric cooperatives. But the urban areas are supplied by publicly traded utility companies.
 
   / Cutting power use to the bone.
  • Thread Starter
#10  
My base rate is the same night and day all year, facilities charge plus usage. No variables.

There are add-ons like a fuel charge (truck fuel) that can vary month to month.

Total bill has been fluctuating between 17 and 21 cents per KwHr. Base KwHr rate is around 11 cents.
 
 
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