PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Customers across Pennsylvania will see sharp increases in energy costs starting Wednesday.
Prices in some parts of the Keystone State are soaring as much as 46%.
Power companies are about to pass along to consumers major price increases beginning June 1.
Many electricity bills will go up, but by how much will vary widely.
Experts say there are ways to save, but you need to act now.
"The supply charge makes up half of the bill, the other half of that bill is the distribution charge. That's really how we get electricity from the poles and wires into your home," said Greg Smore of PECO.
It's the cost of the supply that's rising. Electric charges for PECO customers will go up 8.1%, the smallest increase in the state.
If you're a PPL customer, that electricity charge is going up 38%.
"So it'll come out to a residential customer, who uses roughly 1,000 kilowatts of electricity a month, about $34 a month," said Jane George of PPL Electric. "We provide the electricity to them at the same price that we purchase it. We make no profit on the electricity we provide to customers, which is why we always tell our customers it's important to shop for their electricity."
If you're a customer of a third-party supplier, your bill will not be impacted.
Pennsylvania consumers can also take advantage of something called the "standard offer."
"It's an option for customers to receive 7% off of the current price to compare. And that's when they enroll with a participating electric generation supplier," said Smore.
That 7% discount is locked in through 12 billing cycles. You can elect to switch at any time without penalty.
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, which oversees nearly 7,000 utilities across the state, released the list of increases to its website.
"Beginning June 1, most Pennsylvania regulated electric utilities are adjusting the price they charge for the generation portion of customers' bills for non-shopping customers, also known as the "Price to Compare" (PTC). The PTC averages 40% to 60% of the customer's total utility bill. However, this percent varies by utility and by the level of individual customer usage," the Commission said.
Here's the full breakdown from PUC:
- Citizens' Electric, up from 7.3995 cents to 9.3667 cents per kWh (26.6%);
- Duquesne Light, up from 7.98 cents to an estimated 9.36 cents per kWh (17.3%);
- Met-Ed, up from 6.832 cents to 7.936 cents per kWh (16.1%);
- PECO, up from 7.066 cents to 7.637 cents per kWh (8.1%);
- Penelec, up from 6.232 cents to 8.443 cents per kWh (35.4%);
- Penn Power, up from 7.082 cents to 8.694 cents per kWh (22.7%);
- PPL, up from 8.941 cents to 12.366 cents per kWh (38.3%);
- UGI Electric, up from 8.854 cents to 12.903 cents per kWh (45.7%);
- Wellsboro Electric, up from 7.7569 cents to 9.592 cents per kWh (23.7%); and
- West Penn Power, up from 5.667 cents to 8.198 cents per kWh (44.6%).
**Note: Energy price changes for Pike County Light & Power are still being calculated.
The Commission also posted the following tips to keep the summer energy bills down:
- Pay attention to the thermostat - Every degree you raise or lower the temperature could impact energy costs by up to 3%. Also, consider a programmable thermostat to automatically raise temperatures while you are away from home.
- Have your air conditioner serviced - Regular air conditioner maintenance along with clean air filters help ensure efficient operation of your cooling system.
- Insulate and seal leaks around your home - Adding insulation, installing storm windows and doors, and sealing cracks and air leaks can help you stay cooler and use less energy.
- Install or repair ceiling fans in high-trafficked rooms - Use ceiling fans to circulate the air, keeping the room and you cooler.
- Protect windows to reduce heat buildup - Smart landscaping and exterior window coverings are just two ways that you can better protect windows and reduce the impact of heat buildup in your home.
More from PECO:
The calculation for average bills for customers using 1,000 kWh of electricity a month and do not use electricity to heat their homes. The final Price to Compare (PTC) will increase to 7.637 cents per kWh. This is an increase of 0.571 cents per kWh or 8.08% from March 1, 2022.
This is for the supply side of a customer's bill. With these changes, the monthly electric bill for a customer using an average of 1,000 kWh will increase by $7.13 per month, from $154.91 to $162.04, or by about 4.60%
For Pennsylvania's Standard Offer Program, there is no wait time for customers to rejoin the program if they previously participated.
Here's a link to the program from PECO's website if you wanted to include it. Pennsylvania's Standard Offer Program | PECO - An Exelon Company
Explanation of how PECO works to secure the lowest price power on behalf of our customers:
"PECO does not generate electricity, rather we purchase the lowest cost electric supply for customers by buying power in the spring and fall through competitive bidding processes for one- and two-year fixed-price contracts.
Every six months we replace about 35% of expiring contracts with new contracts. This staged approach helps smooth out price changes over time.
This is a strategy that has been successful in reducing customer supply price volatility for years and has avoided dramatic price increases when severe weather has occurred or with the current increases in energy prices.
However, as less expensive contracts expire from purchases made 12 to 24 months ago, we must replace them with new contracts at current market prices."
In addition to providing ways to manage energy use or shop for energy with a competitive supplier, we want to support our customers and communities-- and know that any price increase can be challenging.
If customers are having trouble paying their bills, we offer multiple assistance programs and flexible bill payment options. Customers can go to peco.com/help for more information.
Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission: managing your summer utility bills