Westar Energy is seeking 1,000 customers to participate in a Time of Use Rate pilot project.
About the pilot project
- The Time-of-Use (TOU) pilot program is a three-year pilot, restricted to the first 1,000 customers.
- The TOU pilot program is a voluntary program that encourages customers to shift their electric usage to off-peak periods when electric demand is lower.
Who is the program for?
- Households that can shift discretionary energy use to consume less electricity during the hours of 10:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m..
Time-of-Use Rate Pricing
|Basic service fee
Winter period - Energy used in the billing months of October through May
||Weekdays 10:00 AM - 8:00 PM
||Weekdays, holidays, and all other hours
|Summer period - Energy used in the billing months of June through September
|Weekdays 1:00 PM - 8:00 PM
|Weekdays 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM
||Weekends, holidays, all other hours
|Plus all applicable adjustments and surcharges
Time-of-Use Rate Tariff
Standard Residential Rates
How the program works
- Westar will install the metering equipment to accommodate TOU Pricing.
- Applications are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.
- An agreement is signed for a term of one year. After one year, 30 days written notice must be given to withdraw from the pilot.
Call us at 800-383-1183 to sign up for the Time-of-Use Rate.
Requirements for participation
- Cannot be on Average Payment Plan, Group Bill or enrolled in Community Solar.
- Cannot be served under the Parallel Generation Rider or the Net Metering Rider.
- Customers are also strongly encouraged to participate in eBilling.
- Westar may refuse installations for reasons pertaining to safety conditions at customer's premises or technological limitations.
- Service under the Time of Use Schedule is subject to Westar's General Terms and Conditions with the Kansas Corporation Commission.
Time-of-Use Rate Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Time-of-Use (TOU) rate?
Demand for electricity varies throughout the day. It is lowest in the middle of the night when most people are sleeping and commercial/industrial customers are not in operation, and it is highest from about noon to 9:00 PM when businesses are operating and everyone is working, cooking, watching TV, running the dishwasher, etc.
TOU rates offer a more accurate reflection of actual electricity prices to create incentive for people to use less electricity when demand (cost to generate) is highest and more electricity when demand (cost to generate) is lowest.
Why is Westar offering the TOU rate?
Electricity must be produced exactly as people need it, and Westar must generate enough power to meet demand at all times. This means that some plants only operate on a handful of days when electricity use is greatest. By encouraging customers to shift energy use to other times of the day, existing plants can operate more efficiently, and the need for Westar to build new power plants to meet peak demand may be delayed.
Do I have to be an advanced digital meter customer to participate in the pilot program?
No, you do not. Advanced digital meter customers do have the added benefit of viewing their usage as it's used with the online energy dashboard and electronic alert messaging.
How do I reduce use during peak times?
There are several ways to shift energy usage, and they depend on individual factors, such as how many people live in your household, how you heat/cool your home, how hot water is generated, how much energy you use to begin with, and individual energy usage patterns.
Examples of opportunities to shift electric usage include:
- Use a timer on your dishwasher so it starts at night instead of during the day.
- Take a shower earlier in the day instead of at night (if your water heater is electric).
- Put computers to sleep when not needed, especially during peak time.
- Do baking during the weekend (all weekend hours are off-peak).
- Turn off unnecessary lights during the evening.
- Set programmable thermostat lower (or higher in case of A/C) when you are not home.
Could I end up paying more on the TOU rate?
It depends on your total usage each billing period and when usage occurs. Some customers may see a slight increase in summer electric bills under the TOU, but the savings gained during the months of October through May will help to lower annual electric costs.
Being on the TOU rate may require you to make adjustments in your daily routine. If you don't change your energy usage patterns, you could pay more on this rate.
TOU rates and electric vehicles
If adding an electric vehicle significantly changes your home electricity use, you may be able to save money by choosing the TOU rate plan. As a guide, if you drive your EV 1,000 miles/month, you would use about 250 kilowatt-hours of electricity per month for your vehicle. The amount you pay to charge an electric vehicle on the TOU rate will depend on the percentage of your overall kilowatt-hours consumed during peak, intermediate and off-peak periods. If you use fewer than 900 kilowatt hours per month and cannot commit to charging your electric vehicle during off-peak periods, the standard rate may be better.
How will I know if I'm using electricity more efficiently?
Save your TOU electric statements (available online) and track whether your off-peak electricity usage changes over time. If you find that you're using more kilowatt-hours during the off-peak and mid-peak (low demand, low cost) times of the day, then you're being a savvy consumer.
What happens if I move; does the TOU rate follow me to my new address?
If you move, you will establish a new account with Westar. You will have the option of signing up for the standard residential rate or the TOU rate.
What happens at the end of the three-year pilot program?
The Kansas Corporation Commission will make a determination whether or not to continue the TOU rate as it exists or modify it.