The term, free electricity, is heard a lot today when you’re shopping for an electric service provider. However, it’s important to understand that there really isn’t such a thing. But some companies do offer electricity plans with free weekends and free nights.
It’s important that you know what to look for when you shop these plans. When you compare them with other electric plans that don’t tout free electricity you’ll find that you’re paying a higher rate for your electricity during those hours that aren’t free.
The Advent of Free Electricity Plans
Since wind blows mainly at night, it produces a lot of inexpensive electricity. Shifting electric usage away from peak daytime hours results in lower prices while also avoiding the need to buy more power plants. This is a win-win situation for both – the electricity company and the consumer.
When this results in an energy company offering you free electricity it’s not because they’re altruistic. It’s because Texas’ deregulation resulted in a lot of competition between electricity companies. By them offering you free nights and weekends they cut down on the burdens of having too much electricity on their power grid.
Texas isn’t only the largest deregulated market today, but it’s also the only state doing this today. They understand that American consumers want choices and great benefits from them. This is what will drive the energy industry’s future. However, nobody knows for sure how fast this will happen. What is known is that free electricity is a great marketing tool.
How Free Electricity Plans Save you Money
Now that you can see that electric plans offering free electricity really do exist, you’ll want to understand how they can save you money. Essentially, what the electricity company is doing here is shifting some of their load to off-peak hours, during which there’s less demand. Since you can’t store electricity, companies can equalize usage in this way.
Anyone who wants free electricity must understand how these plans work, as well as what hours and/or days fall under the free service. Additionally, you’ll find yourself paying higher electric rates during the other hours – sometimes almost double what you’d typically pay. In order to comparison shop and find the best free electric plan for your home, you really need to intimately understand when and how you use electricity. Also, if you want a free electricity plan to actually work for you, it’s important you adjust your usage so you take advantage of the free hours. Failure to do either of these things typically results in paying a much higher price on your electric bills.
Shopping for a Plan That’s Right for You
When you’re shopping for the right electric plan there are a few things you’ll want to remember and understand. These include:
- Your average use will help you figure out how much you’ll pay each month. The more you use during the free hours, the less you’ll pay. However, if you use too much electricity during peak hours, your electric bill will increase considerably.
- The length of your contract is typically 12 or 24 months. You’re locked into whatever rate per kWh you agree to when you sign your contract.
- Most of these free electric plans come with a cancellation fee. Some fees are really expensive, so make sure you keep this in mind before changing energy providers.
- Electricity charges are sometimes double during those hours when you don’t have free electricity. So, make sure most of your electricity usage is during the free nights and weekends.
Clearly, if you’re really interested in a plan that offers free electricity you need to be careful. You need to make sure you understand the terms of the contract before you sign it, so you don’t spend more money than necessary on your electric bill.