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Need advice about Constellation Electric
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Need advice about Constellation Electric - June 28, 2010, 07:32 PM

I live in Rockville, MD (in a condo building) and am a Pepco electric customer. Let me rephrase that...I am raped by Pepco on a monthly basis. I got a letter from Constellation Electric promising that if I select them as my "electricity supplier" I can "lock in" a fixed electricity rate of $9.55 cents/kWh which they claim is a 14% savings over what I'm paying now. It says that Pepco will still read my meter and respond to emergencies and that I will continue to be billed by Pepco.


For the life of me, I cannot figure out from the extremely confusing bill I get from Pepco what I'm currently paying per kWh (WTF does that even mean?). So my questions are as follows:
  1. Does anyone have any experience with Constellation Electric and are the savings they are suggesting really accurate?
  2. If I switch to them, am I going to get screwed by Pepco if I have a problem because I am not "buying my electricity from them"?
  3. If I go with Constellation and decide I'm not happy, can I switch back to Pepco at any time or am I locked into the 1 or 2 year contract they are offering?
Thanks in advance for you help.
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June 28, 2010, 07:52 PM

KWh stands for Kilowatt-Hour. I used to know all about this when I was doing commercial real estate, but if I remember correctly, a kWh is 1000 watt hours, calculated by multiplying the electrical usage by the time elapsed in hours. Without placing a usage meter on each appliance, you're not gonna know what your appliances are using so it'll be damn near impossible to do the math.

I will say that it does sound sketchy that you're gonna get service from one company who, at least I, have never heard of, while another company does all the work. In my experience, when you pay a provider, they take care of you from start to end. Well, maybe not "take care" but at least deal with you. It may be worth a phone call to see what your contract terms are and how flexible they'll be. Just make sure you know what you're getting into before you sign anything.
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June 28, 2010, 08:45 PM

I did a quick google search and found them so I think it's legit. If you initiate an online sign-up, you'll get a link to the terms and conditions, and I think you do commit to a year or two years with them.

Electricity is bought and sold all the time. In fact, if you have a means of generating electricity on your property, say by water or wind, then you can sell that electricity to a power company, and it'll go out on their grid. The city of Lawrence where I grew up generated a little bit of electricity off of some turbines stuck in the Kansas river, and they sold to to Kansas Power and Light (or whoever it was, I don't recall for sure). So you're doing the revers: agreeing to buy from someone who has a deal worked out with Pepco. I think you'll be fine but you can always ring Pepco up and ask questions.


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June 29, 2010, 01:05 AM

they're a real company. i think they own bg+e. and like john said, electricity is bought and sold like crazy. i've never heard of having one company service while another one provides, but i'm not surprised about that. especially with the non-compete service deals being phased out. your bill should show your current rate, compare and decide!
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June 29, 2010, 08:14 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Interceptor View Post
I live in Rockville, MD (in a condo building) and am a Pepco electric customer. Let me rephrase that...I am raped by Pepco on a monthly basis. I got a letter from Constellation Electric promising that if I select them as my "electricity supplier" I can "lock in" a fixed electricity rate of $9.55 cents/kWh which they claim is a 14% savings over what I'm paying now. It says that Pepco will still read my meter and respond to emergencies and that I will continue to be billed by Pepco.




For the life of me, I cannot figure out from the extremely confusing bill I get from Pepco what I'm currently paying per kWh (WTF does that even mean?). So my questions are as follows:
  1. Does anyone have any experience with Constellation Electric and are the savings they are suggesting really accurate?
  2. If I switch to them, am I going to get screwed by Pepco if I have a problem because I am not "buying my electricity from them"?
  3. If I go with Constellation and decide I'm not happy, can I switch back to Pepco at any time or am I locked into the 1 or 2 year contract they are offering?
Thanks in advance for you help.
1. Constellation Electric (Energy) Constellation Energy Group owns BGE (Baltimore Gas & Electric) who serves me in Laurel, I get my power from Washington Gas, though the rate you quote is slightly better then mine, I think it works. What really works is joining a peak rewards type program if Pepco has one. I get credits on my bill every month for $20-30 depending on the season. Get BGE Bill Credits and a New Honeywell Programmable Thermostat from PeakRewards℠
2. Switching will have no effect, Pepco still will charge you a delivery fee.
3. Once you switch you are locked in just like in a cell phone contract and will be charged a cancellation fee if you leave early.


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