Homeowners benefit from demand response programsFinancially savvy homeowners are always looking for ways to save money on the various expenses they incur throughout the year. And since a home’s energy bill is often one of the more substantial costs that homeowners face every month, people are interested in finding ways to cut down the burden it places on their wallets.

There’s a tradeoff to be made here: Customers want relief from high bills, utilities want to take some of the strain off the electrical grid as society uses more and more electricity. This has given birth to what are known as demand response programs. Under these programs, utilities will give rebates to customers who sign up and pledge to limit their energy use during times of peak demand to help take some of the load off the grid.

There are plenty of other benefits of participating in a demand response programs. Here are a few that should interest homeowners:

Save on your energy bill

This is the most obvious benefit of taking part in demand response. By shifting your energy use away from peak times, you’ll help the electrical grid better manage the load during periods of high-demand. Power companies are willing to pay homeowners to do this – if you sign up and follow through on your commitment to avoid peak demand energy use, you will receive a lower bill at the end of each month. Best of all, you’ll be using the bulk of your power when electricity is cheapest, saving you even more money.

Protect everyone from blackouts

According to the Environmental Defense Fund, if the grid gets overloaded during peak usage times, it can cause blackouts and price spikes. If a large number of homeowners commit to using their energy-intensive appliances during off hours, they can help protect everyone from blackouts.

Stop pollution from peaker plants

If the demand for energy is too high for the main power plants in a region to adequately generate and deliver power to everyone who wants it, the utility will resort to using what are known as peaker plants, which only get used during these kinds of emergencies, to make sure the supply of energy matches the demand, the EDF reported.

Because demand response programs help make sure the existing supply matches demand, grid operators won’t have to resort to using peaker plants when there is too much demand. This will prevent the burning of extra natural gas and coal, preserving these resources and limiting the pollution they create when they’re burned.

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