LCEC Electric Bills and Solar Energy
Many of our customers are concerned with what they have been hearing recently in the news about Lee County Electric Cooperative's (LCEC) billing practices. LCEC has been defending its practices against angry customers who had photovoltaic systems interconnected to the grid with net-meters (meters installed to measure how much energy is sold back to the utility).
Fafco Solar wants to make it clear that a typical size residential solar electric system will save LCEC customers money on their monthly electric bill. At issue is the increased customer charge (monthly fee) for customers with net-meters, and the increased cost for the first 500 kilowatt-hours (kWh) consumed each month. Here are the facts:
- Net-metered residential customers are charged $19.22 per month as a fixed customer charge. Standard residential customers are charged $15.00, $4.22 less.
- Net-metered residential customers are charged $0.082093 per kWh for the first 500kWh consumed. Standard residential customers are charged $0.076. The added $0.006093 per kWh results in a maximum $3.05 additional monthly cost.
- Between the customer charge and the additional usage charges, the most a customer can be "penalized" for having a net-meter is $7.27 per month. This occurs only if exactly 500kWh is consumed from the utility.
What has not been made clear is that usage above 500kWh is actually priced lower for net-metered customers, and significantly lower for consumption over 1,000kWh monthly. In fact, if you consume 1,341 kWh or more, the net-metering rate structure actually benefits LCEC customers!
Because the whole point of installing a solar energy system is to reduce your utility consumption, and most residential customers will consume less than 1,341 kWh after a solar energy system is installed, the billing structure is seen by most as counterproductive and unfair. This is why customers are (rightfully) upset. On one hand, utility companies encourage conservation of energy, and on the other they charge people more who do just that!
The bottom line is that your particular circumstance should be evaluated to determine potential savings from installing a solar energy system. You will save substantially with a solar energy system. Fafco Solar will provide a free billing analysis for any LCEC net metered customer or any existing LCEC customer interested in solar energy systems for their home. You do not need to be a Fafco Solar customer, and there is no obligation. This is a free service to the community. Just provide:
Get your last 12 LCEC bills together and contact Fafco Solar for your no-obligation solar energy evaluation.
Note: Rates current as of 3/18/2010
Note: If you do not have 12 month of bills, that's okay! We can still help!
Servicing Cape Coral, Fort Myers, Naples, Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda, Bonita Springs, Tampa, St. Petersburg, Lakeland, and including all of Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry, Glades, Hillsborough, Pinellas, Polk, Pasco, and Hernando Counties in Florida