Heartland Rural Electric has calculator to help consumers

Updated: 5 days ago

With hot weather returning this week, Heartland Rural Electric Cooperative has once again been sending out Peak Day notices to its customers.

For Heartland Electric Cooperative customers, the three different rates might cause some confusion. The newest Heartbeat Newsletter at https://www.heartland-rec.com/heartbeat-newsletter clears up some misunderstandings.

First, these rates are just a way for Heartland customers to understand how to save money on their bills and also how to help the company save money and conserve energy. It is up to the customer to decide if they want to change the way they use electricity in their homes.

Most customers have been assigned to the Peak Saver’s rate, which will not change their bills much from what they were in the past. This rate is designed to give consumer-members more control over their bills while ensuring the co-op is ready for the challenge of high usage during peak hours.

Customers on the Peak Savers rate are charged $39 per month for an availability charge, the energy charge will be 0.101510 per kilowatt hour (kWh), and the peak charge will be $2 per kW used during the consumer-member’s monthly peak hour (hour of highest electric usage). Peak hours are 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. on days that are announced as Peak Days.

The Peak days are announced the day before for weekdays, except for holidays, and email notices are sent to customers. Days are usually announced Peak Days when the temperature is going to be higher than 90 degrees.

This means that Heartland looks at their costs and determines what hour during that peak time in the month was their highest cost. Each Peak Saver customer then is charged $2 for each kW used that hour. If a customer’s household was using 5 kW that hour, the charge on the bill would be $10.

A kilowatt (kW), which is equivalent to 1,000 watts, measures the rate of energy use, or how much energy it takes for an appliance to operate. A kilowatt hour (kWh) measure the amount of energy consumed.

The other rate options available to consumers are the Time of Use rate and the Time of Use EV (for electric vehicle owners).

The Time of Use rate is for Heartland members who want to know exactly how much their energy use is going to cost them. It provides the predictability and consistency they need. Energy is somewhat more costly during the peak time from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. every day, but is significantly cheaper at other times.

For Time of Use rate, the availability charge will be $39 per month, $0.182026 per kWh on peak time from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m., $0.078444 per kWh off peak, and there is no peak charge. The same energy charges apply 365 days a year.

One of the biggest drivers of change for the electric companies are electric cars which will cause a big impact on the amount of electricity used. The Time of Use EV rate will encourage customers to charge their cars outside of the peak hours.

The availability charge for Time of Use EV rate will be $39, energy charges vary depending on the time and apply 365 days per year. On peak time, the rate is $0.192878 per kWh, for off peak time (8 p.m. to 12 a.m. & 4 a.m. to 3 p.m.) and for super-off-peak time (12 a.m. to 4 a.m.), it is $0.040994 per kWh.

For more on Heartland rates, a calculator to let you check how your rates may differ between the options, and more, go to heartland-rec.com. Heartland can be reached at 1-800-835-9586.

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