Desert Living Tip of the Month: Chill! IID Wants to Lower Your Electric Bill

Good news! The Imperial Irrigation District Board (IID) met last week to discuss overhauling its billing system to make electric charges more predictable and affordable in response to concerns about fluctuating summer electric bills. In 2015, the current Energy Cost Adjustment factor (ECA) was adopted to reflect the variable energy costs, including fuel and power purchases. During the summer of 2023, unforeseen market volatility, record-breaking temperatures, unexpected unit outages, and transmission disruptions highlighted the limitations of the current ECA. These market fluctuations resulted in bills for some customers doubling from one month to the next.

Key Highlights of the IID Proposed Resolution to Improve Billing for Electricity:

  • Outlines immediate steps to improve billing and stop spikes on monthly bills.
  • Implements a Comprehensive Action Plan written by the IID General Manager to address concerns over the current ECA and present alternatives.
  • Effects a strategy to protect customers from electric market volatility, ensuring affordable and consistent electric bills.

Following are Tips to Help Lower Electric Bills During Warm Weather:

  • Avoid using the oven on hot days. Instead, cook on the stove, use a microwave oven or grill outside.
  • Make sure to clear any debris around the air conditioning unit.
  • Keep AC thermostats set at 78 F degrees or higher. Every degree above 78 F represents an approximately 2% savings on cooling costs.
  • Enjoy an afternoon at the pool, park, clubhouse, or local library.
  • Wait until cooler times of the day to do tasks like laundry and cooking.
  • Turn on the ceiling fan when using your air conditioner. You can raise the thermostat about four degrees to save on cooling costs without reducing comfort.
  • Turn off lights in rooms that aren’t in use. Enjoy candlelit dinners or dimly lit game nights. During the day, rely on natural light alone.
  • Open windows to let cooler air flow into your home in the morning and at night.
  • Inspect your air conditioner to ensure the system is leak-free and operates efficiently.
  • Check the filter on your air conditioning system, and clean or replace it if it’s dirty. A dirty filter slows airflow and causes the system to use more energy.
  • Caulk gaps and cracks around doorframes and windows to prevent warm air from entering your home.
  • Use a pool cover and replace pool pumps and motors with energy-efficient equipment. Shorten the operating time if your pool has a filter and automatic cleaning sweep.