Nobody likes paying energy bills. There has never been a time when you open your mailbox to find an electric bill and you were excited by it. Some homeowners are taking the goal of avoiding energy bills to a new level. They have chosen to live in zero-net energy homes. These homes produce enough energy to offset the usage of the entire household.
How do these homeowners manage to offset their energy bills? It comes from a combination of energy efficiency and generation. These homes are built with thick concrete walls and insulation to keep a thick barrier from the outside environment. The houses are equipped with geothermal heating and cooling systems, eliminating the need for large central air units and furnaces. The final component is an energy generating device, most often solar panels, which create the energy for the home to use.
While the initial cost is higher for these homes, heating and electrical bills are essentially eliminated. While homeowners still incur customer and tax charges from being hooked to the grid (for those occasional days when the homes do draw power), oftentimes, the homes will produce more energy than they use. This means that energy is actually fed to the grid, granting homeowners a credit towards their bills.
If you are looking to make your home more energy efficient, or you want to reduce your bills, go to alphabuyer.com. Alphabuyer can help you find an energy solution that fits your needs. Simply go to aphabuyer.com and enter your ZIP code to see how much you can save.
You may have heard that leaving your computer and TV plugged in while not in use still uses electricity. You may even unplug them when not in use. However, there’s another device in your house that could be soaking up energy: your wireless router.
In a recent study by the Natural Resources Defense Council, “small network devices” were studied to learn their energy usage. They found that these devices used an average of 94 kilowatt-hours per year. The study also found that these network devices use about the same amount of power whether or not they are in use.
There are, however, energy efficient models of network devices. Energy efficient network devices use only about 2/3 the amount of power as standard network devices.
So, why not get an energy efficient router? The problem is, the study found, is that it’s hard to tell, from a consumer standpoint which models are more energy efficient, as there is no labeling to mark it as such. Another issue is that many consumers receive a wireless router from their internet service provider, without a choice of what model router to receive.
The good news is that there is hope on the horizon. The Environmental Protection Agency is close to finalizing Energy Star standards for wireless routers. This will make it significantly easier to spot the energy efficient router models.
You’re trying to use less, why not pay less for your energy too? Alphabuyer can help you find a low fixed rate for your electricity. To see offers in your area, simply go to alphabuyer.com and type in your ZIP code. It’s that easy. Alphabuyer can help you find an energy solution that fits your needs.
Natural gas prices saw a major decline in 2012. With utilities and alternative suppliers switching to natural gas, electricity rates fell as well. The third rate that dipped, which was not so apparent, was US natural gas reserves.
The fall in natural gas prices was cause predominantly by the use of fracking in the Marcellus Shale. The abundance of natural gas produced from fracking caused prices to drop sharply. With natural gas prices falling lower than the price of coal, utilities and suppliers began to switch their plants from coal-powered to natural gas.
These factors caused the natural gas reserves in the US to decline by half a trillion cubic meters from 2011 to 2012, according to Breaking Energy. Now that natural gas prices are starting to creep upward, the reserves should start to increase again. However, this means that electricity and natural gas bills will increase. Now that the approval process has begun for the exportation of liquid natural gas, prices could see an even greater climb in coming years.
If you would like to lock in a low fixed rate for your electricity before rates increase, Alphabuyer can help. To see offers in your area, simply go to alphabuyer.com and enter your ZIP code. Alphabuyer can help find an energy solution that fits your needs.
Electric cars have gained in popularity in recent years because of the environmental benefits that they supply. However, with many people shopping mainly on miles per gallon, it’s hard to compare electric power vehicles. The eGallon program is the United States Energy Department’s solution to that problem.
The Department of Energy has set up a site to that shows what the average price of gasoline is in any particular state. The application then shows the comparable price per gallon of driving a vehicle that runs on electricity.
The difference is significant. In Pennsylvania, the app calculates that regular unleaded gasoline is $3.54 per gallon. This is compared to the eGallon, which is priced at $1.21 per gallon. In New Jersey, the app calculates a gallon of regular unleaded at $3.54 also. However, the eGallon price is a bit higher due to higher electricity prices. The New Jersey eGallon is $1.51 per gallon. The Department of Energy also emphasizes the fact that the price of electricity is more stable and does not go through large fluctuations as the price of gasoline does.
If you want to save on charging up your electric vehicle, or just powering your home, Alphabuyer can help. Simply go to alphabuyer.com and enter your ZIP code to see offers in your area. Alphabuyer can help find an energy solution that fits your needs.
Utilities are making a switch. Coal has seen a substantial drop in usage by utilities recently in favor of natural gas. Increasingly strict regulations and low prices have been the primary motivators of the switch.
Coal currently comprises about 40% of electric power in the United States. However, Standard & Poor’s contends that two-thirds of coal facilities are over 30 years old and must either be shut down or renovated. With legislation on charging firms for carbon output still being tossed around, and the low prices on natural gas due to a major production increase because of fracking, many utilities are turning to natural gas.
According to the EPA, natural gas creates half the carbon emissions that coal does. Should any emissions charge or limit be levied against utilities, natural gas would be, financially, a much better fuel to be burning for utilities. Natural gas currently supplies 30% of US electricity but, according to Forbes, could rise as high as 40%-50% in the next 20 years.
It’s not just the United States that is seeing an increase in natural gas use for utilities. Natural gas was featured more prominently in new site construction than was coal. The Wall Street Journal reported that in 2009, 24% of the EU’s new plants were powered by natural gas compared to 8.7% that were powered by coal.
It remains to be seen what effect the trend toward natural gas will have on your monthly bill. However, in the meantime, Alphabuyer can help you lower your bill. To see offers in your area, go to alphabuyer.com. Alphabuyer can help you find an energy deal that fits your needs.
We have all experienced it. The endless junk mail, the calls during dinner, even the home visits by energy suppliers trying to get you to switch to their service. However, there is a way to end these calls. With a few easy steps, you can remove yourself from the whirlwind of offers.
The first step is to register for the “do not call” lists, both state and federal. The federal do not call list can be found here. If you are a New Jersey customer, you are only required to sign up for the federal “do not call” list. You will automatically be added to the New Jersey list as well. If you are a PA resident, Pennsylvania has a separate “do not call” list which can be found at here.
Next, you should have your account removed from your utility’s Eligible Customer List (ECL). The ECL is a list of customers that the utility is required by law to make available for suppliers. This is to encourage public knowledge of energy deregulation and to allow suppliers to make customers aware of their offerings. The process varies based on your utility, but listed below are links to ECL removal forms in areas we serve.
PECO: Must call PECO customer service at 1-800-494-4000
Duquesne Light: Must call Duquesne Light customer service at 1-412-393-7100
If suppliers continue to call you after taking these steps, there are a couple different options for reporting them. First you can file a complaint through the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission here. If you are a Pennsylvania resident, you can report state infractions to the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s office by following the link at the bottom of this page or calling 1-800-441-2555. New Jersey residents can report “do not call” list infractions online here. For federal complaints, file with the Federal Trade Commission here. To ensure accuracy always obtain the caller’s name, company, and the supplier they represent.
If you still want to save money by switching energy suppliers without sifting through hundreds of offers with hidden fees lurking in the fine print, come to alphabuyer.com. Alphabuyer can help you find an electricity offer that fits your needs. Go to alphabuyer.com to see how much you can save.
Based on our last blog post, we decided to send a quick letter in to the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Editorial Board. Alphabuyer has access to some pretty interesting information and we felt the need to provide our perspective.
You can read the full article, Inquirer Letters Extra: Savings found in switching, here.