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Riverside residents to be plugged into the Smart Grid

Published: Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2013 2:28 p.m. CDT

RIVERSIDE – ComEd customers in Riverside soon may get up to the minute information on how much electricity their house uses, as well as new ways to pay for their energy, a spokesman told the Board of Trustees at its Thursday meeting.

Mike McMahan, of ComEd, said the company will install smart meters to Riverside customers beginning next week and in late November. The new digital meters will replace the analog meters that have been used for decades. 

Among the benefits of the new meters touted by ComEd is the ability of customers to participate in what is called a Dynamic Pricing policy.

McMahan said most people on traditional meters are on a flat rate plan where they pay the same price for electricity day or night. However, the price of electricity actually fluctuates nationwide on an hourly basis. 

“At night, the country is awash in electricity, because everybody’s asleep and everything’s turned off,” McMahan said. “With a dynamic pricing model, you pay the real price of electricity at that point during the day. So, if you could shift your load from when daytime prices are high to nighttime use when prices are low, you can save money that way.”

Other changes would be smaller.

“Automatic meters mean we won’t have to read your meter in the back of your house anymore,” McMahan said.

Residents whose smart meters will be installed next week already should have received a door hanger with installation information. Residents who are set to have theirs installed in November can expect to hear from ComEd by late October.

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