Why Utility Rates Change With the Seasons

Utility rates, particularly for electricity, change depending on the seasons. Here's why.
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Molly McBeath, Content Writer, utiliVisor
Sep 26, 2023 (2 min read)

Did you notice an increase in your electricity rates over the summer? Good news! The end of summer also means the end of summer electricity rates! Con Edison officially stops using its summer rate on September 30, but the schedule for other utilities, such as Southern California Edison and Duke Energy, varies by region. IOW, there’s no hard-and-fast date for this changeover, for those who participate.

Why do some utilities charge a summer rate?

Summer rates occur because electricity demand goes up with the temperature, as air conditioning usage rises, which creates greater strain on the electrical grid. Utilities charge higher rates (as much as 3X the regular rate) to manage this higher electricity demand and help them ensure a reliable power supply during peak periods. 

So if you see a significant drop in your building’s electricity charges in your next billing period, the end of summer rates may be why.

And if you own property that uses steam in New York City, enjoy this reprieve. Con Edison’s winter steam rates run from November 1 – April 30.

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