The program is available to Toronto Hydro's customers who are already enrolled in the peaksaver program, and who are participating in Toronto Hydro Smart Meter Time-of-Use pilot project. In return for signing up for the PowerShift Pilot Program, Toronto Hydro will give participants $10 a month this summer - for July, August and September - a total credit of $30 on their fall 2008 electricity bill.
The pilot will provide Toronto Hydro with valuable information about how it can assist homeowners with load shifting and conservation, when Time-of-Use rates are introduced city-wide, probably later in 2008 and through 2009.
"We believe that peaksaver can be a very effective load shifting tool for homeowners, especially during summer peak pricing periods," said David O'Brien, President and Chief Executive Officer, Toronto Hydro Corporation. "The PowerShift pilot will provide us with good information about maximizing the potential of this technology to the benefit of consumers, and the environment."
Right now, the peaksaver device is intended to be activated by Toronto Hydro when demand for electricity is high during heat waves, and the utility wishes to help manage the peak demand in Toronto.
With PowerShift, the trigger for cycling down central air conditioners is different.
At the pilot homes, Toronto Hydro will automatically cycle down when the temperature is over 27 Degrees C on weekday afternoons between 1- 5 p.m. to help homeowners conserve power and, in the future, lower their bills. Participants will be able to track the effect of this on their daily electricity consumption through the Toronto Hydro website.
Toronto Hydro will use the feedback from the customers to develop load management programs that may be introduced when Time-of-Use rates come into effect.
The PowerShift Pilot Program is intended to help customers shift more of the air conditioning load to later in the day, when lower rate prices will apply. Participants can go on-line now to see how PowerShift can make a positive change in their electricity consumption.
PowerShift is a complement to other electricity reducing or shifting activities, like running appliances during evenings, which can help lower demand on hot summer afternoons, and save money for customers in the future.