FPL | How your business is charged for electricity

Making It Easier for You to Manage Your Energy Use

Depending upon the amount of electricity you use and your usage level, your bill may be made up of two components, energy and demand.

Heres the difference:

Energy the total amount of electricity used, measured in kilowatt-hours (kwh). A kilowatt-hour is the number of kilowatts used in an hour and represents 1,000 watts. For example, the energy used by a 100-watt light bulb for 10 hours equals 1,000 watt-hours or 1 kwh (100 watts X 10 hours = 1,000 watts or 1 kwh).

Demand reflects how much electricity is used at any given moment. A demand-measuring meter constantly tracks and records the highest 30 minute average level of kilowatt demand (kWd) each monthly billing period. Demand charges are measured either by demand-measuring meters for larger commercial (over 20 kW) and industrial accounts or incorporated in the energy charge.

Making sense of demand

To further understand the difference between demand and energy, it may help to compare electricity demand to water demand. The measurement of energy is similar to measuring the total gallons of water used during a month, and the measurement of demand is similar to the largest amount of water flowing through an intake valve at one time (i.e., maximum gallons per minute).

For example, assume the kWh listed are equivalent to gallons of water.

  • Customer 1 uses a steady, low level of electricity during the entire month to reach a gallon level.
  • Customer 2 reaches the gallon level in the first few days, then levels off for the remainder of the month.

Both businesses used the same amount of electricity overall, but Customer 2 placed a greater demand on FPLs system during a few days of his electricity use. FPL has to generate or replace capacity with reserves to meet both peak and steady use of electricity, which is why it charges for demand.

Get on the best rate for your business

To help you save energy and money, FPL offers several rate options, including:

Contract rate allows you to move up if you are near the threshold of the next rate class. Consider contracting up if your business is currently billed under a GS-1 general service rate (non-demand) and uses between 8,000 and 10,000 kwh each month.

By contracting up, you agree to be billed a demand minimum of 21 kWd a month, plus your energy usage. Your total charges will be less than on the non-demand rate. The minimum demand charges vary according to each rate class.

Annual and Seasonal Time of Use (TOU) rate allows you to lower electric bills without reducing power consumption, as long as you are able to shift electricity use to off-peak times, or if your business operates between 16 and 24 hours per day.

Heres how it works: On the standard rate there is no difference in what youre charged for electricity use during peak and off-peak periods. But with TOU rates, you pay a lower rate for off-peak usage and a higher rate for peak period usage. The more energy consumption youre able to shift off-peak, the greater the savings.

If you want to see if you could save by switching to one of our alternative rate plans, call our Business Customer Care Center at 1-800-FPL-5566 (1-800-375-5566), or contact your Account Manager.

More on Your Energy Use