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Electricity bill overhaul: Price dictated by time of use
02 June 2021 @ 12:29

CHANGES to electricity tariffs have come into force from today (Tuesday, June 1) making it cheaper to use appliances in the early hours of the morning and more expensive in the middle of the day.

Charge your phone and laptop overnight and move washday to a weekend to save money 

Using power at peak times will come in considerably more expensive than now, but at off-peak times, up to 95% less.

During 'flat rate' hours, charges will be the same as they are now.

The three price slots will only benefit customers who do not already have a 'time discrimination' contract and who stick to them as much as possible – those with a 'timed' tariff will see a small increase in their bills, typically around €2 a month.

Those who will benefit the most are households and business premises with a power level of between 10-15kW, although the vast majority of customers fall within this category.

For the average consumer, with a 2.0A tariff and 4.6kW of power and who uses around 3,500kW (3.5mW) per year, the saving will be around €21 annually; for those with a 'time discrimination' contract on the same power level, the changes will bring an increase of around €34 a year.

The changes will apply to all consumers, whether their contract is directly with the electricity board, Iberdrola, or through an independent distributor on the open market.

According to the National Markets and Competition Commission (CNMC), the standing charge for the power level will reduce, but the price of power per unit will rise in general, meaning it will be up to the consumer to watch what appliances they use and at what time of the day. 

As a result, the cost of electricity bills will be far more in the customer's hands than ever before – until now, only around 30% of what consumers paid related to actual power used, with the rest being standing charges and taxes, meaning there has never been any real incentive to try to save electricity.

Reminiscent of the days when people would avoid making phone calls before a certain time in the evening so as not to pay 'peak-time' prices, those trying to watch their expenses should steer clear of using electricity between 10.00 and 14.00 or between 18.00 and 22.00, as this is when the cost soars.



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