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Smart Thermostats Can Save Customers Energy and Money

SCE offers up to $125 in rebates for installing a smart thermostat and signing up for the Save Power Day program.
By Mary Ann Milbourn

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Ron Netta freely admits that he’s “into gadgets.” So in 2013, he jumped at the chance to install a smart thermostat in his Newport Coast home and enroll in Southern California Edison’s Save Power Day energy conservation program.

Under the program, customers are alerted to reduce their electricity use from 2-6 p.m. to ease stress on the power grid during periods of peak demand. In return for conserving, customers get a credit on their SCE bill.

Netta said the thermostat allows him to conserve while still enjoying his active retirement.

“We are in and out of the house all the time,” said Netta. “It looks and sees we’re out and it sets the temperature. When we come home, it sets the temperature again.”

In addition to the convenience, he’s also enjoyed savings on his electric bill — $78 the first year and $107 in the second.

SCE hopes to encourage even more people to conserve through the convenience of a smart thermostat by offering up to $125 in rebates to customers who install a qualified device and also enroll in the Save Power Day program.

The thermostat program offers a $75 bill credit from SCE. If they are also a SoCalGas customer, they can get an additional $50. The combined credits will be issued on the customer’s SCE bill. Customers also will be eligible for ongoing bill credits as part of the Save Power Day program.

Customers who previously installed a smart thermostat but aren’t enrolled in the Save Power Day program also are eligible for the $125 bill credit if they sign up.

On Save Power Days, the smart thermostats are programmed to initially pre-cool the customer’s home. The thermostat will then automatically adjust the temperature a few degrees higher during the event from 2-6 p.m.

“It keeps the house at a comfortable temperature throughout the four-hour event,” said David Kaintz, the SCE manager who oversees product development.  “The house will warm up a bit, but it is usually not noticeable to the customer — and they can override the temperature setting at any time.”

SCE’s smart thermostat program began four years ago as a study, but without an enrollment rebate. Now, more than 8,200 customers have installed the smart thermostats and enrolled in the Save Power Day program.

For more information: sce.com/rebates.

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