Electricity rates in Spain have been frozen since 2018, but as of 1st June 2021, this big freeze is over! This means that, if you’re currently living in Spain, then your next electricity bill will show different access rates and corresponding prices. Whilst these new electricity rates could leave you with an increased electricity bill, it is possible to work the new system correctly and reduce your monthly electricity bill too.
Why Are the Electricity Rates Changing?
Rather than maintaining a fixed price, the costs of transporting and distributing electricity to properties will be set by the National Markets and Competition Commission (CNMC). The CNMC will replace a flat tariff rate with a modified tariff that will optimise the way the electricity network is used: effectively, you will pay more for your electricity if you use it at peak times. The rate you pay for your electricity will effectively change depending on the time of day you use it.
The electricity charges set by the Spanish government itself will also be updated and will follow the same structure and proposal as the CNMC.
- Picking the Cheapest Times to User Electricity
Under the new tariff rates, the hours of 10am-2pm and 6pm-10pm from Monday to Friday will be the most expensive times of day to user your electricity. The ‘average’ or medium price times to use your electicity are between 8am-10am, 2pm – 6pm, and 10pm to midnight from Monday to Friday. Whilst the cheapest times to use your electricity will be between Midnight and 8am from Monday to Friday, all day on Saturday and Sunday, and on national holidays.
Keeping these times in mind, and using them to schedule your heaviest electricity use, can ultimately help you to save money on your electricity bills. Here are four top tips for money saving that have been offered to consumers from the CNMC:
- Change Your Contract So It Reflects Your Needs
If you are on an estimated energy tariff then now might be the perfect opportunity to switch your contract so that it only changes you for the energy you actually need. This change can be made via a request to your energy provider, and free power changes can be accepted up until 31st May 2022.
- Only use One Appliance at a Time
Try to limit your electricity usage to just one appliance at a time, particularly during peak hours. So for example, if you’re using the oven then don’t also turn on your washing machine. And as some devices, such as irons, use such high electricity consumption, you should use this at off peak times where possible or avoid using it in conjunction with another high consumption device.
- Consume Off-Peak Where Possible
Perhaps the most obvious way to save money using the new time-based tariff system is to move your consumption to off peak times wherever possible. For contracted power during the cheapest times, the price is actually 95 percent lower than in the highest period, so this could make a huge difference. Try turning on your washing machine just before you go to bed, or ironing your work shirts during the off-peak hours as soon as you wake up.
- Be Mindful of Your Usage
Finally, be mindful of your electricity usage and schedule when things should be done rather than focus on convenience. Charging your electric vehicle at night rather than during the day, for example, could save you over 300 euros per year. Savings can also be made by checking the temperature of your fridge and freezer and ensuring they aren’t colder than they need to be, using eco settings on your devices where possible, and think carefully about your temperatures: you can reduce the cost of heating and cooling by setting the thermostat of the heating or air conditioning device to 25°C in summer and 20°C in winter.
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