How can I start new West Penn power service?
Getting set up with West Penn Power is easy and convenient. Just visit the West Penn Power web site and simply fill in the online Start Service form.
Start requests take at least 2 days to process and First Energy will send you an email confirming your start date.
Customers should call the West Penn Power Contact Center if they need their service turned on sooner.
Be ready to supply:
- Service Address: The address where you want your service turned on or switched.
- The start date for electricity service.
- Personal Information: You will need your name, phone number, email address, and your Social Security Number. These will be required.
- West Penn Power will do a soft credit check to determine if a deposit is required.
Will I Need to Pay a Deposit?
Credit Rating -- West Penn has the right to check your credit history and level of credit risk to determine whether a security deposit is necessary. Other factors include whether the customer was previously disconnected or has unpaid energy bills.
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 -- West Penn must notify you in writing within 3 business days about the specific reasons why you are required to pay a security deposit. PA law states that deposits cannot be greater than an estimated two months usage.
Customers have 21 days after the utilty sends the deposity request notification to make a payment. However, customers have three months to pay the full 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 West Penn and can pay your bills if you fail to do so.
What are West Penn 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 West Penn Power's powers. The charges cover the West Penn 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. West Penn's delivery charges must be approved by the Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission (PAPUC). All West Penn 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. West Penn Power 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.
What are West Penn PTC charges?
When deregulation began in Pennsylvania, all utilities that wanted to participate in consumer choice had to sell off their generators. However, the PAPUC requires these utilities to provide electricity supply at a default rate to customers in their service territory who don't shop for a retail supplier. As a result, these utilities must purchase their electricity supply for the default rate from generator companies.
The PAPUC oversees West Penn Power's default service rates since these represent generation supply costs that are passed directly through the utility onto their customers without mark up. This default rate is also called the "Price to Compare" or PTC.
What is the "Price to Compare" AKA the "PTC"
The PTC default rate represents the actual price (both generation and transmission) the utility pays for the electricity. It not only includes the generator company's price for making the electricity but also the cost to transmit it from power stations over high tension power lines to West Penn Power's local electrical switch yards. From there, the electricity is distributed throughout the West Penn local electrical grid for delivery to homes.
In Pennsylvania, First Energy's utilities set PTC rates by holding auctions to line up their electricity supplies. Auctions are held four times a year to cover four delivery periods. Consequently, West Penn's PTC rates change every March 1, June 1, September 1, and December 1. When the auctions are completed, the PAPUC must approve the prices for both the generation supply and transmission.
For customers, it means these electricity rates can vary seasonally; low some months, higher the next.
West Penn Power Current PTC Residential Rate: 8.228 cents per kWh, expires 6/30/2023
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 the West Penn PTC charges cost?
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
|PTC Supply Rate
|Monthly Distribution Charges (excluding riders)
||$0.03487 per kWh
What is 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.
How Do I Get the Cheapest West Penn Rate?
Shopping for a new West Penn 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.
- Your current bill. Your past usage per billing period can help you estimate a how much a plan might cost you each month.
- The current West Penn PTC and expiration date. Knowing the current West Penn 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.
- Your West Penn Power of Pennsylvania customer account number. This 12 digit number is located on your bill. Having it handy lets you sign up with a retail supplier right away.
What do I need to look for when shopping in the West Penn service area?
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 West Penn 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?
Who bills me?
West Penn 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?
West Penn customers can request 12 months of their energy usage free of charge. This is most easily available through your West Penn online account.
Who do I contact about West Penn billing problems?
The PAPUC requires all PA public utilities to offer "budget billing" where annual electricity costs are averaged out over the cost of the year. This ensures that customers aren't presented with unexpectedly high bills at peak times.
- First thing to do is contact West Penn Power. If you are having trouble paying your monthly bill call West Penn Power's Customer Service: 1-800-686-0021. 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.
- Residential Customers aged sixty (60) years of age or older or a residential customer receiving Social Security or an equivalent monthly pension payment can request to extend the due date of such customer's bill from 20 days to 30 days.
Who do I contact about West Penn emergencies and outages?
All power lines are extremely dangerous! Never attempt to move a downed power line by yourself. Call 911 and then notifiy West Penn Power.
Report safety hazards involving power lines immediately to West Penn Power at 1-888-LIGHTSS (1-888-544-4877).
You can also report downed lines or outages at West Penn's website.
Check West Penn Power's current electric outages as they are being repaired.