3000+ Naperville Electric Utility Users Watching Their Meters

COVID has created a new activity for Naperville Electric Utility users; they can watch the little dials move around on their electric meters. Looks like some folks in Naperville are digging deep to find new ways to have enjoyment.

Let’s say there is nothing on TV even though you have 400 channels, you’re tired of looking out the window, you’ve rearranged your sock drawer more than once, you’ve checked the expiration dates on your food items, what is left to do?

According to the December 2020 issue of Naperville Connected you can monitor your electric usage. What could be more fun than that. Naperville city officials said:

“A year ago this month, our utility dashboard ‘Empower’ formally launched. Since then more than 3,000 Electric Utility customers have signed up to receive greater insight on their electric use. Empower displays your energy usage using a dashboard-style concept so you can see at-a-glance the days and times you use the most energy through charts available in yearly, monthly, weekly, or daily formats. Additional features like daily temperature let you compare your usage to external factors…Rather than waiting for a monthly bill, Empower allows you to evaluate your energy use more often and use that data to make energy-saving changes.”

Wow, how cool is that! Of course, you could look to see if your lights are on, but that’s too easy. Better yet, go to the dashboard to see if your lights are on.

Combine that with Naperville’s announcement that electric customers will see a 2% decrease in their electric rates in 2021, meaning the average electric bill will go from $110.63 to $108.42, a savings of $2.21 per month or the price of a gallon of milk on sale. However the average water/wastewater monthly bill will increase by 1.79% from $81.35 to $82.81 for an increase of $1.46. That is a total net savings for electric and water of $1.46 per month, or a nickel a day.

Bottom line, if you do your laundry at 3 am, rather than 3 pm, open your refrigerator door half as often, and flush the toilet every other use, you can watch your electric meter usage and save an additional penny per day. It doesn’t get any better than that!

Show 2 Comments


  1. Steve Chirico

    I agree Watchdog. The electric portal is perhaps not all that exciting, but a 2% rate reduction for the third year in a row, totaling 7.1% is significant AND, it is far better than another increase. Naperville electric is once again significantly less expensive than ComEd and just as importantly, our reliability record is literally off the charts better than theirs.

    Now when the smart water meter portal is up and running, that will be something I watch. Several times in the past couple of years I have received huge water bills (5X) because I had a leak that I was unaware of. I will definitely set up alert notifications when my water is running for extended periods of time. Naperville also maintains a very expensive back up water supply system, so in the event there is a problem with our main water supply, we have a back up to provide healthy and safe water to our residents. Most cities don’t have a back up because they do not have the resources or the money, but Naperville made it a priority. It’s very expensive to maintain and one may never appreciate this…unless we need it one day.

    • watchdog

      Well Mr. Mayor, I was watching ‘pennies’ and you countered with ‘dollars’, and no doubt that dollars trumps pennies. Please note that I worked ‘trump’ into that sentence. And I agree that a 2% rate reduction is far better than a 2% increase, with the 7% savings even better by three and a half times. When the day comes that I don’t pick up a nickel on the ground, it can only mean one thing; that I can’t bend over any more. I still question the ‘big-time savings’ that Smart Meters touted. I also own the fact that Watchdog (me) was wrong about the Water Street Project; it turned out really nice, with no congestion. Finally, just to show you how desperate I am for some COVID relief, I find it rather satisfying, watching the little dial turn on my electric meter, which tells me that my lights are on.

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