Our Energy Future Is Changing
Just like restaurants on Saturday night, the electric grid experiences moments of high traffic, or demand. Following the principles of supply and demand, electricity is most expensive when demand for it is greatest. South River EMC is working with members to lessen demand and expenses by initiating programs that encourage members to reduce or shift electricity use during these high traffic times. Start learning about those programs here.
Switch And Save
Looking for a way to save? Consider switching from our standard residential rate to our time-of-use rate and save energy and money. Energy used during peak hours is charged at a very steep rate, but energy used during off-peak times is a bargain. Even better, energy use shifted to the super off-peak time is a real steal! You must make tough decisions to move most of your energy use to off-peak hours. If you're interested in learning more, visit the Switch and Save page for details.
Member Owned Generation
If your farm or business has a stationary generator onsite, capable of carrying the entire load of your service, you may qualify for the South River EMC Member Owned Generation Program. Participants allow South River EMC to start their generator remotely during times when there is a need to reduce the amount of load on the grid. More information can be found on the agricultural members page under Member Owned Generation or MOG.
A smart thermostat, like an Ecobee or Nest, is an internet-enabled, programmable thermostat that allows you to wirelessly monitor and control your home’s heating and cooling equipment. Stop spending hundreds of dollars a year on heating and cooling your home, often when you’re not even there to enjoy it. Consider a smart thermostat.
Smart technology enables you to remotely control your homes temperature via a tablet, smartphone or desktop for greater control using the home’s WiFi connection. Additionally, smart thermostats learn from your behaviors and begin to adjust settings to match your preferences and schedule. A smart thermostat also enables you to track energy trends in your home, troubleshoot and track the effectiveness of your HVAC system.
As a Cooperative member, you can now maximize the use of your smart thermostat, get a credit from the cooperative AND help South River EMC to save money on the hottest and coldest days. Smart thermostats enrolled in the SmartStat program help you to use less energy by cooling your home ahead of time and tweaking the temperature up to three degrees during peak times. Learn more by clicking the SmartStat link.
While not a new technology, electric vehicles have made strides in recent years. Whether or not you're considering one, it doesn't hurt to learn a little more about them, or even trying to test drive one. As for what impact an electric vehicle, or EV, might have on your energy use? If used in conjunction with our time-of-use (TOU) rate, there's not much difference. Visit our electric vehicles page to learn more about savings and offerings.
Water Heater Controls
A tanked water heater is typically the 2nd largest energy user in the home. A water heater timer is a device that allows you to set specific on/off periods for hot water production. Tanked Water heaters constantly use energy to store hot water. A timer will allow the water heater to shut off a predetermined times, such as, while your asleep or at work. Reducing operation time of the water heaters 4500 elements can help save energy and money. Older water heaters did not have as much insulation. So adding a timer on an old water heater can actually save more than adding one on a brand new unit. The location of the water heater is important also. For instance a water heater that is inside the home will be easier to keep warm, but if it is in a garage or under the home, more energy is needed as heat loss is greater, which, will increase savings of a timer.
Some other tips to save with water heating are:
- Keep thermostats on 120 degrees
- Cut off at breaker if gone for 2 days or more
- A water heater blanket if it is in an unconditioned space
- If you experience changes in hot water temperature or duration, investigate because bad elements and hot water leaks are very expensive and preventable.
Watt Watchers is a program to help hold down power costs, keeping bills and rates low, for members of South River EMC. Participants voluntarily agree to reduce their use of electricity during peak use period-- the few critical hours when the most people are using the most electricity, all at the same time. This is done via notification by call or text, and is a request to move energy using activities to a non-peak time. Visit our Watt Watchers page for more information.