Demand Charges

What is demand?
Demand is the measure of power required at any one point in time. During a billing period your demand will fluctuate depending on the number of devices that are operating at various times. For example, if a customer’s premise has four 60-watt lights and only two are on, the demand will be 60 X 2 or 120 watts. If a third light is turned on, the demand will increase by 60 watts to 180 watts. {1000 watts = one kilowatt (kW)} Your electric meter will record the highest demand that is reached during the billing period. This is the demand that you will be charged on your electricity bill.

Why charge customers for demand?
When a customer’s equipment requires a large supply of electricity, even for a brief period, the system has to deliver. Because of these requirements, users of electricity of 10 kW and greater are charged for demand as well as for energy use.

Moving to and from a demand rate
A General Service customer’s rate classification is initially set to a non-demand rate classification. As load information becomes available, and if it indicates a demand greater than 10 kW, the customer is assigned to a demand rate classification. If a customer’s load is permanently altered at anytime after the rate classification is set, the classification can still be changed. This can be done as the result of notification from the customer or as a result of load monitoring checks that are done during our billing process. This may mean moving from a non-demand rate to a demand rate if load has increased, or moving from a demand rate to a non-demand rate if load has decreased.

Manage your energy demand and save
By pinpointing when your maximum demand occurs during the day, you will be able to determine what contributes to high demand and where savings can be made. You can achieve savings by “shaving the peaks” of your energy demand. To do this, you need to shift a portion of the electrical load operating at peak times of the day to non-peak times. For example, instead of having 10 machines operating at 11:00 a.m., you would have two operating at 10:00 a.m., six at 11:00 a.m. and two at 1:00 p.m.

If you have any questions regarding these charges, please contact us at