Saver`s Switch® Owner`s Guide

information SHEET
Saver’s Switch® Owner’s Guide
Welcome to the saver ’s switch program
Your installation is complete, and you are ready to begin saving with your Saver’s Switch.
We’ve compiled these answers to common questions about Saver’s Switch. Please see
the back panel for information about your installation.
What is the Saver’s Switch program?
Saver’s Switch is our discount rate program to help businesses like yours cut summer
electricity costs. Yours is one of more than 15,000 Xcel Energy businesses in five states
that participate in Saver’s Switch each summer. You will receive an annual discount of $5
per ton of enrolled air conditioning on your business’s June–September electricity bill.
How does Saver’s Switch work?
The switch automatically cycles your air conditioner on and off for brief intervals, like
your thermostat, typically 15–20 minutes each half hour for several hours depending on
your equipment. The off periods are designed to maintain your building’s comfort level
while reducing electric use at a time when we most need to decrease demand on our
system. When the control period ends, the air conditioner resumes normal operation.
Typically switches are activated on hot summer afternoons when electric demand peaks.
While the amount of electric reduction per customer is relatively small, cumulatively the
impact is significant, the savings from our Saver’s Switch program is equivalent
to a medium-size power plant. Programs like this one help us manage short-term
peaks and delay the need to build new power plants. Once again, in return, you receive
a discount of $5 per ton of air conditioning on your monthly bill
You can continue to operate just like any other day; no action is required from you.
We do recommend the following energy efficiency steps:
• Ensure your air conditioner(s) are well maintained and functioning properly
before summer is in full swing
• Program your thermostat to achieve desired temperatures before the afternoon
sun heats up your building
• Close blinds and/or window shades
• Reduce lighting when and where possible
Important Installer
Information on Back.
information SHEET
Saver’s Switch Owner’s guide
business solutions center 1-800-481-4700
Frequently Asked Questions
You should continue to operate
just like any other day; no action is
required from you. Often customers
will not notice a control period. We
do recommend that if you know
the temperature will be above
90 degrees that you ensure the
temperatures in your building(s) are
at the preferred level to help ensure
your comfort and energy efficiency.
What is the Saver’s Switch?
Saver’s Switch is a pager-activated device that Xcel Energy installs on outside air
conditioning units. During periods of high electric demand, the Saver’s Switch device
receives a pager message that activates your switch(es).
What does the Saver’s Switch look like?
The Saver’s Switch unit is a small, gray plastic box. It has an identification sticker on the
front of the box and also has a small clear plastic window that has several small LED
lights. The LED lights indicate if the switch is powered and if it is cycling.
What happens when Xcel Energy activates Saver’s Switch?
Xcel Energy usually will control your air conditioner between late morning and evening
on hot summer days. During a control period, Saver’s Switch only cycles the compressor
off. Therefore, air handling and other fans can run continuously, which will circulate
air throughout your building. You may not even notice that the air conditioner is being
When are the control periods?
Saver’s Switch is generally activated on hot summer days when Xcel Energy experiences
high demand for electricity. In Minnesota, Xcel Energy activated Saver’s Switch for
an average of 8–10 days per summer. This is the time of year when the humidity and
temperatures can soar, and so does the use of electricity. The switch is activated only
when we need it, typically during the afternoon into early evening. However, system
conditions can sometimes call for earlier or later controls.
How do I know if it is a control day?
Call the Saver’s Switch Control Period Hotline at 1-800-835-6776. A recorded message
is updated daily with control period information.
What do the lights on the switch mean?
Red Light: The First or Second light depending on the switch model: indicates that the
air conditioner is being controlled. When this light is ON, the air conditioner compressor
is off.
Green light: Communication signal. A solid or flashing green light is a normal condition.
This does not impact the functioning of your air conditioner or water heater.
Call the Saver’s Switch Control Period Hotline at 1-800-835-67
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Saver’s Switch Owner’s guide
information SHEET
business solutions center 1-800-481-4700
What happens after a power outage when power is interrupted?
Once power is restored, Saver’s Switch will go through a phase that prevents the
operation of the controlled air conditioner for approximately 3 to 7 minutes. Some air
conditioners also have this phase built into them. The delay is built in to protect the air
Is there a danger that Saver’s Switch will damage my air conditioner?
No, because the Saver’s Switch device controls like a thermostat, it will not damage your
air conditioner or compressor.
How will I receive my monthly bill credit?
You will see the annual discount on your June–September electric bill after the switch
is installed and activated. It usually takes two weeks after installation to activate the
switch. Your bill credit will appear on your June–September bills. Bill credits are based
on enrolled AC tonnage and are not impacted by how often we activate the switches.
What should I do if I replace my air conditioner?
Please call the Xcel Energy Business Solutions Center at 1-800-481-4700 when you need
to replace a compressor or the entire unit. Xcel Energy installation contractors re-connect
the Saver’s Switch at no cost to you. Xcel Energy will also install Saver’s Switch on any
new units you add after joining the program for additional discounts.
Are there penalties?
It is important that you contact us to reconnect switches. Your participation
and contribution to reducing energy use plays an important role in our ability to provide
reliable electric service during peak demand periods. If Saver’s Switch equipment
is tampered with or disconnected this may result in penalties and removal from the
Am I required to stay on this program for a specific length of time?
Yes. Customers must participate for a minimum of one year. After 12 months, customers
may leave the program at anytime. If you withdraw from the program, your bill discount
will end immediately.
Contact your Xcel Energy representative
For more information about Saver’s Switch or other Xcel Energy programs, call our
Business Solutions Center at 1-800-481-4700.
776 for a recorded message updated daily with control period information.
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information SHEET
Saver’s Switch Owner’s Guide
business solutions center 1-800-481-4700
Dear Customer:
Our installation contractor just completed the installation of Saver’s Switch on your air conditioning equipment. We
are happy to welcome you to our Saver’s Switch program! Please read the information below to learn more about your
participation and future bill discounts. Your annual discount of $5 per ton of enrolled air conditioning on Savers Switch will
be received on your June–September bills.
Date_____________________ Contractor _______________________________________________
________ Saver’s Switch units were installed
________ Total tons of standard air conditioning on the program
Program Discount
• Annual discount of $5 per ton
• Annual discount is received on June–September bills.
• Your account will be eligible for the discount after the switches are activated, approximately two weeks
after installation.
Thank you for joining Saver’s Switch. We hope you enjoy the savings associated with Saver’s Switch. Please call the
Xcel Energy Business Solutions Center at 1-800-481-4700 or go to if you have
additional questions.
The control day hotline is 1-800-835-6776
Saver’s Switch customers: If you have any questions
about the work completed, please call your installer.
Hunt Electric (metro)
C edar Lake Electric
esign Electric (MW MN)
1-800-481-4700 |
© 2010 Xcel Energy Inc. | Xcel Energy is a registered trademark of Xcel Energy Inc. | Northern States Power
Company – Minnesota, an Xcel Energy Company | 10-04-514 | 04/2010 | CRS# 3037