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Duquesne Light Company History

In 1880, famed Pittsburgh inventor George Westinghouse was appproached by his younger brother, Henry Herman, to back a new Pittsburgh electric utility, the Allegheny County Light Company (ACLC). Since the older Westinghouse had already been experimenting with lighting systems for his machine plants, he readily agreed. At its launching in 1882, ACLC specialized in electric arc lighting for businesses. The company soon landed the giant Pennsylvania railroad as a major customer.

By 1884, George Westinghouse owned successful businesses in both electricity and natural gas. He then formed the Philadelphia Company as a holding company to control his enterprises. The company grew rapidly, acquiring other area companies, and eventually took over ACLC in 1896.

But further expansion screeched to a halt in 1903 when a syndicate of financiers organized the assets of some 150 independent Pittsburgh area electric and traction companies (most of which no longer existed) and consolidated them into the Duquesne Light Company. While this upstart company lobbied hard for a city lighting franchise, it would take over three years before it would build its own power plant.

Eventually, the Philadelphia Company bought Duquesne Light Company in February, 1912. As part of the consolidation, the Philadelphia Company merged ACLC and its other power companies together to form a new Duquesne Light Company (DLC). At the time, it was the tenth largest utility in the U.S.

In 1935, the Public Utility Holding Company Act forced the Philadelphia Company to spin off DLC as a separate utility company. It has since expanded its transmission and distribution network throughout both Allegheny and Beaver counties in Pennsylvania.

Now, DLC strives to give back to the people it serves in the Pittsburgh metro area. Through its charitable giving program, the company seeks ways to enhance quality of life and contribute to the region??™s economic growth while also working for the protection of our environment and green spaces.




Duquesne Light Company Service Territory

DLC delivers electricity to nearly 600,000 customers in some or all of Allegheny and Beaver counties in southwestern PA.

Shop Duquesne Light Company's Cheap Electric Rates

Duquesne Light Company serves these cities:


Aliquippa Beaver McKeesport Monroeville Pittsburgh


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Compare Duquesne Light Company Electricity Rates



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You'll then get to see the listing of all the energy suppliers' plans available in your area, along with rates, term lengths, and links to more detail information.



How to Start New Duquesne Light Company Service

Getting set up with DLC is easy and convenient. But remember that applications take at least three business days so allow that amount of time before you need electricity service to start.

The first step to starting DLC electricity service is to fill out the DLC online form. New customers can also apply by calling the DLC customer service center at 412-393-7100.

You'll need to provide the following information when you apply to start service:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Address where electricity service is needed
  • Phone number
  • Social Security number or Tax ID. (This is needed to check your credit history)

Again, Duquesne Light Company needs three business days to process your service request.

If you elect not to provide a Social Security number or Tax ID, please call 412-393-7300 Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to complete your application over the phone.

Will I Need to Pay a Deposit?

Credit Rating -- DLC has the right to check your credit history and level of credit risk to determine whether a security deposit is necessary.

TIP -- Be sure to unfreeze your credit. If you have frozen your credit with any of the major credit agencies, you will need to have it temporarily unfrozen before you submit a new service request.

Pay a Deposit -- DLC must notify you in writing of the specific reasons why you are required to pay a security deposit. Deposit amounts will be based on company charges in an amount that is equal to either:

  • one-sixth of the applicant's estimated annual bill
  • one-sixth of the actual average annual bill for existing customers at the premises

Customers have three months to pay the deposit. The utlity can hold the deposit for 24 months. If the customer pays their bill in full and on time for 12 consecutive months, the deposit will earn interest.

Customers also have the right to use a guarantor who is a credit-worthy customer with DLC and can pay your bills if you fail to do so.



Understand DLC Delivery and Supply Charges

In Pennsylvania, residential customers pay for both the cost to deliver their electricity as well as for the amount of electricity supply that they use.

  • Delivery Charges are fixed rate charges (tariffs) representing the cost of transmitting electricity to your home via Duquesne Light Company's powers. The charges cover the DLC local infrastructure operating costs, maintenance, and ensures them a profit. Other usage-based charges are small costs from riders to fund projects, cover fees, etc. DLC's delivery charges must be approved by Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission (PAPUC). All DLC customers pay the same set Delivery rates no matter who supplies their energy.

  • Supply Charges represent the price for the amount of electricity that you use. Duquesne Light Company customers can choose the "Price to Compare" (PTC) for their electricity supply. However, because of Pennsylvania's Energy Choice program, customers are free to also choose energy from competitive retail electricity suppliers.


  • Understand DLC PTC Charges

    PAPUC requires Duquesne Light to provide electricity supply at a default rate to customers in their service territory who don't shop for a retail supplier. Implementing the PTC default rates is overseen by PAPUC as these repesent generation supply costs that are passed directly through DLC onto consumers without mark up.

    Price to Compare (PTC)

    The PTC default rate represents the actual price the utility pays for the electricity. It includes not only the price to generate the electricity but also the cost to transmit it from power stations over high tension power lines to Duquesne Light Company's local electrical switch yards. From there, the electricity is distributed throughout the DLC local electrical grid for delivery to homes.

    Each utility's PTC rates are determined every few years during auctions to line up generation supplies covering specific delivery periods. Consequently, Duquesne Light's PTC rates change every 6 months on June 1 and December 1. That means these electricity rates can vary seasonally; low some months, higher the next.

    Duquesne Light Company Current PTC Residential Rate: 7.410 cents per kWh, expires 1/31/2022

    NOTE: There are approximately thirty-five borough-owned public power systems in Pennsylvania. These purchase energy for their local residents. Many prohibit residents from shopping for their own provider. If you live in one of these communities, check with your local government to learn more.



    How Much Do DLC PTC Charges Cost?

    The Duquesne Light Company PTC rate is a weighted average rate so higher usage results in a lower PTC. That makes it important for consumers to know and understand how much they are paying for their electricity in any one month.

    How much is the Duquesne Light PTC rate?

    The DOE EIA estimates that the average Pennsylvania residence uses an average of 864 kWh each month. Therefore, an average PTC bill roughly breaks down like this:

    Rate per 864 kWh Used Monthly Customer Charge Total
    PTC Supply Rate 7.410 cents 0 $64.02
    Monthly Distribution Charges (excluding riders) $0.060233 per kWh $12.50 $64.54
    Total Bill $128.56


    Understand Pennsylvania Energy Choice

    Pennsylvania electric consumers are free to choose their own competitive retail electricity supplier. These alternative suppliers shop deals with different producers on the wholesale market to offer competitive rates. As such, their rates are not controlled by PAPUC the same way that utilities are. This way, retail suppliers are able to offer competitively priced fixed rate plans for a variety of term lengths.

    Though it can seem confusing, shopping electricity plans is an easy process. The trick is finding the one that meets your needs. That's why retail energy suppliers in Pennsylvania offer two types of plans:

  • Fixed Rates have their price rate set for the same price over the term of the contract. Customers can count on stable energy rates on plans lasting from 6 to 36 months. However, many fixed rate plans come with early cancellation fees for breaking a contract early.

  • Variable Rates Want to avoid getting tied to an electricity plan for months or years? Then choose a variable plan. Variable plan rates on these contracts can change from month to month depending on the price of the electricity supply. But while there's no contract, there's nothing to prevent your rate from going up one month or down the next. However, these plans don't have any termination fees and this allows customers the flexibility to shop for new rates and switch to better deals without paying any penalty.


  • Your Energy Usage and Understanding Your Duquesne Light Bill

    While your energy usage habits are unique to you, any Pennsylvania native will tell you that winters can be bitterly cold and summers can be hazy, hot, and humid. While most PA homes rely on natural gas for heating, roughly 1.6 million (29%) of homes in the state use electricity.

  • Approximately one third (32%) of home electricity usage goes to electronics, lighting, appliances, and air conditioning.
  • Pennsylvania residents use an average of 5% of their total annual energy costs for air conditioning. Half of PA households have central AC.
  • The remainder of energy use goes to water heating, refrigeration, lighting, electronics, clothes dryers, cooking, and small appliances.

  • Want to learn more about your home energy usage? Duquesne Light Company customers can track 12 months of their electric usage plus other relevant information on each monthly bill.

    The most effective way to cut your energy bills is to reduce your usage by sealing your doors and windows against winter and summer drafts. Adding insulation to your attic, sealing and insulating your basement, and purchasing a programmable or smart thermostat may also improve your home's energy efficiency and help cut your electric bills. Your utility company can provide a wealth of resources and may offer programs to help you improve your home's energy performance.

    Understand Your Duquesne Light Bill

    Your DLC bill contains many details that can be confusing to customers. But there's lots of useful information to help you better understand your usage and rate. Below, we break down the most important items on a sample Duquesne Light Company Electric bill.

    DLC Sample Bill



    Understand Your Dayton Power Light Bill

    Understand Page 2 of Your Dayton Power Light Bill

    Understand Page 3 of Your Dayton Power Light Bill

    • A: These areas show the bill due date and the amount due. You can also find the monthly account summary showing the date the statement was prepared, the previous balance and payments made, any balance still pending, and the current month's delivery and supply charges. At the bottom is the detatchable mail-in payment stub containing the same info as well as your 10 digit DLC account number.


    • B: This shows the customer name and mailing address, and the 10-digit DLC account number.


    • C: Here you can see the break down of your usage history which shows a comparison of your electricity usage for the year to date. You can also see the total usage in kWh for the year and the average monthly usage.


    • D: The Message Center shows important information and announcments from Duquesne Light.




    • E: On Page 2, you'll find information on how to contact Duquesne Light for questions about your account as well as for billing and service options.


    • F: This section explains the various charges to your Duquesne Light account, including customer charges, distribtuion charges, DLC charges, etc.




    • G: Page 3 opens with a detailed break down of charges to your account. It shows meter reading information for prior and current reads.


    • H: The current bill details section shows the DLC service type and the current PTC rate.


    • I: This section explains your DLC Charges, including the customer charge and distribution charges. It shows the amount of your usage and the rate you are charged in kWh.


    • J: Here you can see your current supply charges from your retail supplier. It shows the amount of your usage and the rate you are charged in kWh.


    • K: In order to switch to a new retail electricity provider, you'll need to provide them with your 10 digit supplier agreement ID number. This is different from your DLC account number.


    • L: This section lists the name and contact information for your current retail supplier.




    DLC Coupons, Energy Promotions, Discounts, Rebates and Promo Codes

    As your local electric utility, Duquesne Light offers several rebate and energy efficiency programs to help customers save money off their monthly bill by upgrading their home's energy performance. Some programs also offer money-saving incentives while others could make paying your monthly bills much easier during those expensive winter months.

    Program Name Program Type Benefit
    Watt Choices Program Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

    Duquesne Light is offering residential customers rebates for a wide range of energy-saving products including HVAC, appliances, water heating, insulation, smart thermostats, and smart surge protectors. Rebates are issued in the form of a prepaid card.

    Available until May 31, 2021 or until program funding is depleted. Visit Duquesne Light's Watt-Choices website.

    Watt Choices Program -- EnergyInsights ONLINE ENERGY AUDIT Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

    Active Duquesne Light residential customers who click on Detailed Analysis button and complete the EnergyInsights Audit will receive a free Energy Efficiency Kit through the mail.

    • The kit contains 8 LED lamps and 2 nightlights.
    • The kit will be delivered to your Duquesne Light service address in 6-8 weeks.

    Enter your 10 digit account number to get started. Visit Duquesne Light's Watt-Choices website.

    Watt Choices Program -- DLC WHOLE HOUSE ENERGY AUDIT Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

    This is a professional audit with $435 fee that also includes installation of LED bulbs, LED nightlights, smart power strips, and additional energy-saving equipment. Watt Choices reduces the cost through rebates up to $250 on recommended installed measures. If your household meets income-eligibility guidelines, you will receive the audit at no charge. Call 1-888-998-9478 to schedule an appointment.

    DLC Payment Arrangements Bill payment assistance

    DLC offers payment arrangements to allow residential customers to pay their account balance in monthly installments. These installments are billed along with your current monthly charges and both must be paid on time, in full each month.

    • Payment arrangements are based on the amount of the balance, income, household size, and your history with prior payment arrangements.
    • Contact customer service or sign up online.
    Smart Comfort Residential Energy Efficiency

    Helps eligible DLC customers reduce their electric bills through home weatherization and conservation. You must meet at least one of the following three criteria:

    • Own your home.
    • Be an electric heating customer.
    • Have continuous electric service at your current residence for the previous six months.

    Medical Certificate Bill payment assistance

    This will delay termination of service for up to 30 days if you are eligible for a medical certificate or renewal, and if you or anyone living in your home is seriously ill. A licensed physician, physician's assistant or nurse practitioner must notify Duquesne Light in writing.

    LIHEAP Cash and Crisis Grants Bill payment assistance

    LIHEAP usually opens in early November and closes in early April. The program is available to eligible customers whose income is 150% of the Federal Poverty Level or below.

    Dollar Energy Fund Bill payment assistance

    Duquesne Light partners with Dollar Energy Fund to provide help to limited-income households.

    • The maximum grant you can receive from this program is $500.
    • You are eligible to receive one grant for your Duquesne Light electric account each program year.
    DLC Customer Assistance & Referral Evaluation Service (CARES) program Bill payment assistance

    There are no income guidelines to qualify for the CARES Program. You may qualify for CARES if you:

    • Are experiencing a temporary hardship.
    • Are willing to work together with a CARES representative.
    • Call Universal Services Center at: 1-888-393-7600.
    DLC's Customer Assistance Program (CAP) Bill payment assistance

    DLC's Customer Assistance Program (CAP) is open to eligible customers whose income is 150% of the Federal Poverty Level or below. To apply. Customers will need to supply the following information:

    • Income information, including source of income, for all household members.
    • Names, social security numbers and birth dates for all household members.

    Program benefits include reduced monthly payments, debt forgiveness, information about your electric use, and more.



    Read DLC Reviews

    Since Duquesne Light serves a large eastern market segment, Pittsburgh area residential customers can get a better picture of how good a job it does by comparing it to to other large-scale utilities. Duquesne Light Company is not accredited with the BBB and was well-rated in J.D. Power's 2020 utility residential customer satisfaction study.

    PA Energy Ratings Score Better Business Bureau J.D. Power 2020 Electricity Utility Study
    N/A not accredited,
    A+ rating
    736
    of 1000 pts


    How Do I Get the Cheapest DLC Rate?

    Shopping for a new DLC Customer Choice Plan can seem bewildering at first. Once you understand how it works, though, it's an easy and straightforward process. That said, you should have these three things with you when you shop for electricity.

    1. Your current bill. Your past usage per billing period can help you estimate a how much a plan might cost you each month.
    2. The current DLC PTC and expiration date. Knowing the current DLC supply price lets you compare rates offered by retail energy suppliers. This way, you can get a better feel for what suppliers are offering, for how long, and if any of their incentives make their price work for your family's need.
    3. Your Duquesne Light Company of Pennsylvania customer account number. This 10 digit number is located on your bill. Having it handy lets you sign up with a retail supplier right away.


    Duquesne Light Shopping Questions

    The best way for a PA energy customer to avoid making a bad choice is to ask the right questions. That way, you can learn exactly the information that can save you money. When you shop for electricity service in Pennsylvania, always be sure to ask these important questions:

    • Is the rate variable or is it fixed?
    • How long does the plan last?
    • Is the rate competitive with the current DLC supply rate?
    • What happens when the contract expires?
    • Does the plan include any recurring monthly charges?
    • Does the plan have an early cancellation fee?
    • Does the supplier offer any customer incentives or rewards programs?

    More Commonly Asked Pennsylvania Electricity Questions:

    Who bills me? DLC sends a single bill that outlines and adds up your monthly charges.

    What are the Terms of Service? In PA, Customer Choice Plans must include Terms of Service that explain and identify specific charges and any fees a customer will face when they sign up for an electricity plan. Not all suppliers have the same terms. That's why all Pennsylvania energy choice customers should read and understand the terms of service and contract summary for any plan they are interested in before they sign on to the plan.

    What are early termination fees? Switching retail suppliers before a contract ends can involve paying early termination fees. These can take a big chomp out of your checking account you if choose to switch retail providers before your plan contract ends.

    Where can I find more information on my usage? DLC customers can request 12 months of their energy usage free of charge. This is most easily available through your DLC online account.



    Read Duquesne Light Company Customer Reviews



    Compare Electricity in Your Area




    Bill Questions? Electricity Out? Contact DLC!

    Having problems or interruptions with your Duquesne Light Company electricity? Here's the proper people to call:

    • For Billing problems - First thing to do is contact Duquesne Light Company. If you have trouble paying your monthly bill call Duquesne Light Company's Customer Service: 1-412-393-7100. Have your account number ready.
    • Need extra time to pay your energy bill? Customers can apply to the Customer Assistance Program (CAP) by calling Customer Service or by applying on-line.

    Emergencies and Outages

    All power transmission lines are extremely dangerous! Never attempt to move a downed power line by yourself. Call 911 and then notifiy Duquesne Light Company.

    • Report safety hazards involving power lines immediately to DLC at 877-4OUTAGE (877-468-8243).
    • You can also report downed lines or outages at DLC's website
    • Check Duquesne Light Company's current electric outages as they are being repaired.

    Duquesne Light Company Service Area Providers

    Company Rating Phone
    Constellation
    (5/5)
    855-798-9075
    NextEra Energy Services
    (4.3/5)
    855-639-8091
    Direct Energy
    (4.2/5)
    844-225-3948
    Frontier Utilities
    (4.1/5)
    877-291-6554
    Energy Harbor
    (4.1/5)
    855-847-5888
    Public Power
    (4/5)
    Verde Energy
    (3.8/5)
    Tomorrow Energy
    (3.5/5)
    888-392-8329
    APG&E
    (3.2/5)
    Santanna Energy Services
    (3/5)
    855-763-2715
    CleanSky Energy
    (3/5)
    800-581-1016
    XOOM Energy
    (2.5/5)
    Spark Energy
    (2.2/5)
    877-346-1505
    Major Energy
    (2.1/5)
    AEP Energy
    (2/5)
    Sunwave Gas & Power
    (2/5)
    NRG Home
    (2/5)
    ENGIE
    (2/5)
    SFE Energy
    (2/5)
    National Gas & Electric
    (2/5)
    20 results

    Pennsylvania Zip Codes with the Cheapest Electricity Rates


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