SCE recently revised the rate schedule for Time Of Use. This update to the Time-Of-Use plans took effect on March 1st, so any customers that have not yet gone solar, or are pending installation, will be effected by this new rate change.
Southern California Edison announced earlier this year they would be revising the Time-Of-Use rate plans they rolled out in March of 2018. If you don’t already know why utility companies are moving away from Tiered rate plans, I’ll quickly explain. In 2016/2017, the California Public Utilities Commission favored a mandate that would require all utility providers to place customers on Time-Of-Use. It was determined by the PUC that a TOU plan would be best for consumer’s wallets as California continues its push on being the GREEN state, rather than the golden state. Joking aside, there’s a range of reasons for the mandate-but in short- by 2020, all utility customers, that’s you and me, will have to be on a TOU plan.
Now that you’re up-to-date, let's get back to the new TOU plans and how they’re different then the original TOU plans SCE rolled out back in 2018.
To start, they’ve eliminated two of the plans all together, making it a little easier to select a plan that’s best for your schedule.
Looking at the plans, you can see there are three to choose from;
TOU-D 4 to 9
TOU-D 5 to 8 and
TOU D PRIME
I’m going to start with prime because it’s the recommend TOU plan for solar customers, solar plus storage customers, and electric vehicle owners.
It’s worth noting that TOU-D-PRIME will only be open to customers until April 30, 2019. And this is likely due to SCE planning another change if this program doesn’t work out or requires some adjusting.
I want to remind you real quick if you went solar and received NEM approval before the March 1st, 2019 change, you will NOT be effected by the changes I’m talking about. As you are grandfathered into a rate structure that was available during your solar purchase, that is typically good for 20-years.
So with that said, if you don’t have a solar-plus-storage system, or an electric vehicle, you’ll have to select either TOU D 4 to 9 or TOU D 5 to 8. I’m going to go over each to help you determine which is best for you.
Under TOU 4 to 9, you have a rate of 41 cents per kWh for a 5 hour period. This is of course during the summer months, which SCE puts from June to September. With the winter months being 29 cents per kWh during this on-peak time. The morning will be considered super off-peak during the winter months with a marginal to summer. Rates after 9pm for both summer and winter are considered off-peak and come at a cost of 28 cents per kWh.
Comparing this plan to the TOU D 5 to 8, you have a shorter period with a higher rate of 7 cents, this means you’ll pay .48 cents per kilowatt hour for that three hour window during the summer months with winter months costing you 30 cents per kWh, the off-peak and super off-peak rates don’t change much between the two plans. But here’s want a side by side comparison to better understand.
Now some of you may have already received an email from SCE informing you about the switch to the new TOU plans, and showing estimates of how much you can expect to spend per year for each plan we just went over.
Here’s a picture from a customer that recently inquired about a solar EV Charging system. And as you can see their utility bill will increase without any changes to their energy usage in terms of kilowatt hours.
With that all said, the switch to renewable energy is even more apparent, as the cost of not having a solar system is likely going to cost you more regardless of which plan you select.
The good news is.....you HAVE options, and there has been a number of emerging battery companies in the solar industry.
I’ll be doing another video that compares five different battery companies while providing real estimates to help you see which has the best return on investment based on the new TOU rate structures.
If you’re someone that’s against going solar, cause I know you’re watching, at least go buy a cheap electric vehicle like the Nissan Leaf so you can signup for the TOU D PRIME plan. This will save you a bit of money every month.