Time-of-day pricing or hot and stinky?

by Luke Johnson on June 20, 2013

I was watching my electricity usage recently and it struck me that free nights would only help me during the winter when I’m heating my house with gas. Many electric companies have started offing time-of-day pricing giving the customer more option to meet their needs.

TXU’s free nights and weekends sound like a great deal if you are going to shut off everything in your house before 6am then turn it all back on again after 10pm. The summer heat makes free nights and weekend seem like a stupid idea.

If I turn on my A/C at 10pm it is going to put a strain on my compressor for hours. While I’m waiting for the house to cool down so I can go to sleep, I’m going to smell like those summer days when you’re a kid and you forget to put on deodorant.

I guess I should not completely bash TXU’s new (since June 2012) plans. If I owned an electric car and needed to charge it every night then it would make a little bit more sense to use the free nights.

I can always put my water heater on a timer that stays within the range of free electricity. I could even do a couple of loads of laundry every night before I go to bed but the A/C is always running in the summer.

I’m sure there is someone out there that has every outlet in their home with a timer so they can save tons of money each year. Here is my question to that guy (which should be me) “how long is you’re A/C going to last?”

If it last, let’s say, 5 years less than if you were running it all day because of the strain. That means you are paying some were close to what, $10,000 dollars to get a new one.

If the average A/C last 25 years and you just knocked off 5 years you lost $2000 dollars. It is not a lot but adds up.

But let’s be honest, you going to throw some awesome parties and you don’t want your babe to be like “it hot in here. Why don’t you turn on your A/C?” and the next thing you know you turn on your A/C and your getting charged twice as much as if you were signed up with a different plan.

Luke Johnson

Luke Johnson has been writing about deregulated energy markets since early 2010. His knowledge has helped consumers lower their electricity cost. Connect with Luke on Google+.

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