Summer Saver Program
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Summer Saver is a no-cost, energy-saving Demand Response program where you save by helping us manage electricity demand more efficiently during warmer months. In return, we give you an annual credit on your SDG&E bill. It’s one of the easiest ways to save energy and money during the summer.
How it Works
We install a Summer Saver device on your HVAC unit and on select summer days, when electricity is at its peak, we activate the Summer Saver device to cycle your HVAC unit.
Summer Saver events are activated May through October. It may be called up to 80 hours during the months of May through October.
Two options for enrollment
- Receive up to a $7.50 per ton bill credit for each A/C.
- Your air conditioning run-time is reduced by 50 percent of the hour previous to the conservation period.
- Receive up to a $4.50 per ton bill credit for each A/C.
- Your air conditioning run-time is reduced by 30 percent of the hour previous to the conservation period.
Questions or to see if you qualify
If you have inquiries or would like to see if you qualify, call Itron at 1-800-850-1705.
- Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Summer Saver device?The Summer Saver device is a small, wireless box mounted near your HVAC unit. It operates with central air conditioning systems and is not designed for room A/C units or small space units.
While the Summer Saver device works with most central air conditioning systems, there are some systems that are not recommended to be operated with these devices. These include central air conditioners with communications boards, integrated environmental controls, energy management systems, variable speed compressors, or special wiring. A trained Summer Saver technician will carefully evaluate your unit’s compatibility before beginning any installation activities. If your unit is not compatible, you aren’t eligible to participate in the Summer Saver program.
How does the Summer Save device work?
On select hot summer days, a remote signal is sent to activate the device, which then cycles the cooling function of your HVAC on and off for a period of one to four hours.
Is the Summer Saver device safe to use with my central A/C unit?
Yes. More than five million similar devices have been installed nationwide.
What is ‘cycling’?
During normal operation your HVAC unit(s) turns on and off based on your thermostat setting. This is called cycling. During a conservation period the Summer Saver device overrides your thermostat and controls the amount of time your HVAC unit's condenser is allowed to operate. The Summer Saver device will turn your HVAC "on and off" (i.e. "cycle") each hour to reduce the overall amount of run-time.
Whenever there is a power emergency or critical peak demand, your Summer Saver device will be activated for a conservation period of one to four hours. While your central air conditioner is in a conservation mode the run-time of the condenser (the cooling portion) will be reduced to save energy. However, your fan, which requires little energy to operate, continues to circulate air for added comfort.
With 50 percent cycling, your HVAC unit's compressor will run half the time that it ran in the hour before the conservation period. When the conservation period is over your HVAC unit will return to normal operation under the control of your thermostat setting. With 30 percent cycling, your HVAC unit's compressor will run 30 percent of the time that it ran in the hour before the conservation period After the conservation period, HVAC function will automatically return to normal.
Will the Summer Saver turn my HVAC on, if it is off?
No. The device will not turn on your HVAC in order to cycle. It is designed to only work with units that are operating during the conservation period.
What is a "ton"?
Tonnage is used to express the one-hour cooling capacity of air conditioners. One ton is 12,000 BTUs of cooling/hour. On average, one ton will cool from 400-700 square feet in a residential application and about 1,000 square feet in a commercial application.
How do I calculate my bill credit?
Your bill credit is based on the tonnage of your system. At 30% cycling, you are paid $4.50 per ton. For example, if you have a 5 ton system, your credit would be $22.50. For 50% cycling, you are paid $7.50 per ton. For a 5 ton system, you'd earn $37.50.
When will the device be installed?
Generally, within two weeks of signing up. Commercial installation takes about 30 minutes provided the technician has access to your exterior HVAC unit. You don’t need to be present, but may want to schedule the installation for a time when you are available.
Who provides the installation and technology?
We have an agreement with a third-party, Itron. They are responsible for installing, removing and servicing the wireless unit.
How does the annual bill credit work?
Participation in the Summer Saver begins the day the cycling device is installed. If your install occurs after October 1st, your credit will be paid on your SDG&E bill December of the following year. The amount of your credit is based on the size of your central air conditioning unit and the cycling option you choose.
You may change your cycling option any time prior to August 31st; your bill credit will be based on your cycling option as of October 31st. Between September 1st and October 31st, you may only decrease your level of participation (from 50% to 30%). If you enroll between September 1st and October 31st you will be enrolled at the 30% cycling option. You may opt out of the program at any time but will not receive any compensation for partial participation.
I have more than one central air conditioner. Can I receive a credit for each?
Yes. You can enroll one or as many units as you have. The Summer Saver device can be installed on every working unit on your premise and your bill credit will reflect the tonnage of all your A/Cs.
What if I want to change my cycling option?
It's quick and easy. Whether you want to upgrade your option to earn a higher bill credit or drop down to 30% cycling, you can make the change with just one phone call. Call the Summer Saver Customer Care Center at 1-800-850-1705 and your request will be implemented in 48 hours.
What if I sign up for a Summer Saver option, but then decide it’s not for me?
If you are not satisfied, you can request to leave the Summer Saver program option at any time, at no cost. Just call the Summer Saver Customer Care Center at 1-800-850-1705.
Where can I find my SDG&E account number?
Your account number is the first 10 digits of the number located in the top-left corner of every bill.