Friday, 5 August 2011
Economy tariffs are nothing new - Economy 7 (where your electricity switches to a cheaper tariff - usually between the hours of midnight and 7am) has been around for ages.
If you're home is heated by storage heaters, then you should already be on this (or a similar tariff).
The idea is your storage heaters heat up overnight on the cheap tariff, leaving you with a semi-controlled heat output during the day.
My rented property is on a economy 10 tariff - 5 hours in the early morning followed by two separate 'booster' periods during the afternoon and early evening.
The only downside to such tariffs is the need for multiple meters, sometimes separate billing etc.
So it makes sense to make the most of the cheap electricity - just like a company in America who took a novel approach to powering their air-conditioning in the recent heatwave.
They've installed ice tanks which use the overnight cheap rate (and when there's less load on the supply) to create 3,000 tons of ice (every night).
The ice is then used during the day to filter and cool the air going through the air-conditioning, reducing the working load on the air-con system and the suppliers.
It sounds a bizarre approach but the company concerned reckon they're saving around 35% in electricity costs.
photo credit: emran kassim