York County Met-Ed customers with central air conditioning are eligible for as much as $90 in payments from the utility if they enter a program through which the company is hoping to reduce its peak usage.
Customers who also have a pump for their swimming pools are eligible for as much as $135.
The company is looking for between 20,000 and 24,000 York customers to participate in its new EasyGreen Direct Load Control Program, designed to reduce electricity demand by allowing Met-Ed to install controls on central air-conditioning, hot water heaters and other energy-consuming systems and appliances.
The controls will be connected to the company through two-way communications, allowing it to cycle systems and appliances on and off during peak use periods to reduce energy usage.
How it works: Customers must have central air to participate, and those do will receive incentive payments for each year of participation, as well as saving money on their electric bills, said spokesman Scott Surgeoner.
Customers with central air (but no pool pump) will receive a $50 debit card for signing up, and $10 per month credit on their bill for the "summer months" of June, July, August and September, he said.
People with a swimming pool pump and central air will receive a $75 debit card for signing up, and credits of $15 per month for
those four months, he said.
Reduced demand: The $13 million program is being funded by a U.S. Department of Energy Smart Grid Investment Grant.
A pilot program, the EasyGreen Direct Load Control Program is being launched in York County will test the energy control concept for Met-Ed, the county's largest electricity supplier with about 80,000 customers.
Surgeoner has said the company will send a radio signal to the customer's electric devices during daily peak-demand periods, between about 2 p.m. and 6 p.m., telling the appliances to use less electricity.
The company plans to send signals to the appliances, for example telling an air conditioning unit's compressor to run for a shorter time and when the home reaches a higher temperature.
This would reduce the demand on the electric system during peak hours, especially on the hottest days of the year, with little notice to the customer, he said.
Expect a visit: The company is alerting customers that it will begin door-to-door solicitation for the voluntary program within the next week to 10 days, he said.
Employees, being sent out through BPL Global, will have photo identification badges and will be wearing logo shirts with the Met-Ed/EasyGreen logo.
Customers who are interested in signing up should call Met-Ed at either 1-866-531-8030 or 1-866-311-8558. Call again if there's a busy signal.
--Reach Christina Kauffman at 505-5436, email@example.com, or follow her on Twitter at @dispatchbizwiz.