If you live in the East Midlands area, you may have heard about Heatwise meters and wondered what they were. You may also have heard that they can save certain people money on their home energy bills. And the fact is that, for the right households, these energy plans certainly can help you to reduce your energy bills.
Read on to learn exactly what a Heatwise meter is and whether signing up for this energy plan is the right choice for you and for your family.
What are Heatwise Meters?
The Heatwise meter energy plan takes advantage of the fact that electricity cost less during off peak hours, that is late at night and early in the morning. These plans thus draw power from the energy grid during these times and store it in special storage units within your home.
This energy plan is only available to those who live in the East Midlands region. The name of the plan was changed in January of 2103 to the E.ON EnergyPlan but many people still use the Heatwise name. Those currently under the plan might also see Heatwise on their energy bill or they might see both Heatwise and E.ON EnergyPlan.
Because a Heatwise meter relies on drawing energy during those off peak hours, your home must be equipped with storage units to take advantage of the cheaper energy rates. These units store both hot water for later use as well as a storage unit for home heat.
If you live in East Midlands and want to check to see if you are already on the Heatwise energy plan, refer to your energy bill. There will be two separate energy supply numbers on your bill. One of these numbers is for the off peak supply and one is for regular hours. You only receive the discounted price for the off peak energy used.
Should You Be on the Heatwise Plan?
If you are not currently on the Heatwise energy plan and are considering signing up for it, there are a number of questions you may want to ask yourself about your home and your family’s energy use. Heatwise can save you money on your home energy costs but is not the right choice for every person.
Heat storage units. As is explained above, the Heatwise energy system relies on storing heat drawn from the energy grid in special storage units that can be used later on. Thus, your home will need to be equipped with a hot water storage unit and a separate home heat unit.
Many homes may already be equipped with a hot water storage unit, but many homes will not contain the other storage equipment. The price of such units will add to your initial energy costs so make sure to factor this in to your decision making process. You may end up saving money in the long run by switching to Heatwise but upfront costs may deter you.
Your energy use patterns. When deciding on switching to Heatwise you should also consider you and your family’s energy use patterns to make sure that you can take the best advantage of the cheaper rates for off peak energy consumption. Do you use the greatest amount of energy during the day or at night?
Although Heatwise does rely on storage units for later use of energy, you may end up using all of this stored heat and then drawing energy during peak hours. A good rule of thumb is that those families that use 40 percent of their energy at night are good candidates for Heatwise.
Ask yourself, do you take showers in the evening or very early morning or at other times of day? Do you work at home and use lights and appliances during daylight hours or are you more apt to turn on lights and appliances at night? Can your dishwasher, clothes dryer, and washing machine be put on a timer to run in the middle of the night?
Perhaps you and your family should keep a log of your energy use patterns for a month before you make your decision to go with the Heatwise energy plan or not. The potential for saving money is certainly built into the Heatwise system but you should be a careful consumer and weigh all of your options before making the commitment.
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