Wednesday, February 25, 2015

PUC Reminds Consumers They Can Switch Electric Suppliers In 3 Days

With more bitter cold temperatures in the forecast and winter heating bills on the way, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission Wednesday reminded consumers that, in most of the state, they are now able to switch suppliers in as few as three business days if they wish to make a change to their electric supply rate or contract.
As of December 15, 2014, customers in the majority of Pennsylvania service territories are now able to switch to a different electric supplier, or back to default utility service, through an off-cycle meter reading within as few as three business days once the utility has been notified. Customers should call their utility to inquire about accelerated switching options.
The Commission has implemented several measures, rulemakings and new education tools since last winter to require better and clearer information from electric generation suppliers (EGSs) and to help consumers avoid being stuck with a high electric rate for multiple billing cycles. Additionally, the Commission has enhanced by adding new information related to electric shopping and fixed and variable rates.
EGSs also are now required to list terms and conditions more prominently on disclosures and contracts.
Consumers are urged to confirm who their electric supplier is, double check the terms and conditions of their contract and use to assess their options and find potential savings.
Additionally, consumers should know whether they are on a fixed or variable rate and what each rate type means. For example, customers on a variable rate are subject to fluctuations in the price of their electric consumption. Information on fixed and variable electric rates is available here.
Consumers are advised not to sign a contract without knowing the length of the contract, the price, whether it is fixed or variable and whether there are any early termination fees. Consumers also can find conservation tips and advice for reducing electric consumption on the PUC’s website.
Since October, the PUC has been reminding consumers to “Prepare Now” for high energy costs this winter. The PUC’s message is simple: Prepare Now for winter energy costs. Learn more about conservation.
Check your electric and natural gas bills and supplier contracts. Use to shop for service. Look into programs that help low-income customers maintain service. Visit the PUC’s Prepare Now webpage or call the PUC at 1-800-692-7380. #PrepareNow

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