Time-of-Use rates are an option available to Iowa and Illinois customers. If most of your electricity use occurs during times of the day when total demand on the electric system is lowest, these rates could help you save money. They may be especially cost-effective when you shift your usage of appliances and household electronics that consume the most electricity to off-peak hours (10 p.m.-8 a.m.). Appliances like air conditioners, dishwashers, space heaters, clothes washers and dryers, and some household electronics consume high amounts of energy.
Electric vehicle drivers who have a personal charging station at home are more likely to save with Time-of-Use rates than other customers, if they charge primarily during off-peak hours.
Change in rates
What’s the difference between Time-of-Use and regular rates?
Regular rates do not vary based on time of day, while Time-of-Use rates do. In the summer, Time-of-Use rates reflect a significant premium for use during on-peak hours, but are priced well below regular rates during off-peak and all other hours. Time-of-Use rates may only be cost-effective if you shift your major electricity usage away from on-peak hours during summer months. In the non-summer months, Time-of-Use rates, during any time of the day, are lower than regular rates for the first 1,000 kWh. However, all use in excess of 1,000 kWh is always priced lower on regular rates as compared to Time-of-Use rates so that customers who rely on electric for heating their homes can do so economically.
MidAmerican offers the following Time-of-Use rates for residential and commercial customers:
Rate RST: Available to residential customers with an annual use of 50,000 kWh or less.
Rate GET: Available to residential customers with an annual use greater than 50,000 kWh and to all nonresidential customers.
Rate GDT: Available to all nonresidential customers.
How do I know what times of the day the cost of electricity is lowest?
MidAmerican has divided the 24 hours in a weekday into three different time periods: on-peak, off-peak and all other hours. The most expensive time to use energy is during on-peak hours (1-6 p.m., Monday-Friday), especially during summer billing periods (June-September). Energy consumed in the summer during the time periods of off-peak (10 p.m.-8 a.m.) and all other hours will cost much less. In the non-summer months, the time periods of on-peak and all other hours are priced the same, with a slightly lower price for off-peak use.
Can I still use appliances and household electronics whenever I want? What about charging my electric vehicle?
Yes. You may use your appliances and household electronics or charge your electric vehicle at any time of the day. There are no restrictions on your electricity usage with Time-of-Use rates. But remember, you will be charged significantly more than regular rates during on-peak hours (1-6 p.m., Monday-Friday) in the summer billing periods of June-September. Keep in mind our recommended settings for your smart thermostat, and follow some easy energy-saving tips that will have a positive impact on your energy usage, no matter what time of the day it is.
How are major holidays treated?
There are no on-peak hours on major holidays. Major holidays include New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. Off-peak hours will be 10 p.m.-8 a.m. and all other hours will be 8 a.m.-10 p.m.
How will I know if the Time-of-Use rates are saving me money?
Each year, MidAmerican performs a rate comparison to determine if the amount you paid for electricity under Time-of-Use rates is lower than what you would have paid under a regular rate. You will be sent a letter informing you of the results of that comparison. If Time-of-Use rates are not saving you money, you will be advised to switch back to a regular rate. You can also narrow down what may be using extra energy and costing you more money with our high bill FAQ.
If I sign up for Time-of-Use rates, may I change my mind?
You must stay on Time-of-Use rates for at least 12 months. After 12 months, you may switch back to a regular rate.
Will I need a new meter?
Yes. At no charge to you, MidAmerican will install a Time-of-Use electric meter at your home that will measure your usage and what times of day you are using energy. To get set up on Time-of-Use rates, please email OnlineCustomerService@midamerican.com.