For Iowa and Minnesota customers
- Alliant Energy Kids in 500 classrooms this year
- Spend it - don't send it!
- Summer projects? Call 811 before you dig!
- Stealthy ways to lower your cooling costs
- Alliant Energy offers nine ways to pay your bill
- Keeping connected - budget for the winter heating costs ans save for the holidays!
- Is my meter correct?
- Power move. Start or stop service online
- Where do recycled appliances go?
Alliant Energy Kids in 500 classrooms this year
For several years Alliant Energy has promoted the importance of energy safety and energy efficiency through classroom presentations by Alliant Energy employees. Those messages are as important as ever, but we wanted to find a way to reach more students and their teachers.
"With the old program, we were able to be in 40 to 50 classrooms a year. With the new program, Alliant Energy will have a presence in almost 500 classrooms across our service territory," said Robin Sempf, a Senior Product Manager with Alliant Energy.
The updated Alliant Energy Kids program targets students in 4th and 5th grade and is designed to help teach the most important concepts about electricity and natural gas: how it works, where it comes from, ways to reduce energy usage and how to stay safe.
Each 4th and 5th grade participating teacher receives a free kit of energy education resource materials. The kit includes 30 copies of The Energy Zone and a large poster to hang in their classroom. The Energy Zone is a 12-page, full-color student magazine filled with articles, fun facts and word puzzles about energy resources, energy conservation and important energy safety tips.
An email inviting teachers to participate was sent out last fall and the response was immediate and overwhelming. Teachers appreciated the free energy education resources, like Joe, a 4th grade teacher that said: "Thank you for all that you do!" and Janice, another 4th grade teacher said: "Thank you so much for offering this to schools!"
As one of our core values, Alliant Energy is proud to provide valuable safety and efficiency information to teachers, students and their families. Teaching children how to use energy safely and wisely now, makes for educated customers in the future.
Alliant Energy will contact 4th and 5th grade teachers in our service territory to order the energy education kit this fall for the 2012/2013 school year. If you are a 4th or 5th grade teacher in our service territory, you can order a kit now and receive it in the fall. For more information, visit alliantenergykids.com or email us.
Spend it - don't send it!
Using your rebate card to pay your bill
There are so many ways to use your Visa® Prepaid Card (rebate card) from Alliant Energy - go out to dinner, purchase gas or groceries, spend it on your hobby or even make some repairs around the house. Use it like you would a gift card, but don't send it in with your Alliant Energy bill.
If you send us your rebate card to make a payment, we don't have the equipment to process the card. You'll receive the card back with a note. Since we can't process the payment, you could be in jeopardy of a late payment.
That doesn't mean you can't use your rebate card to pay your Alliant Energy bill. We partner with Western Union® Speedpay® which allows you to pay your bill using a debit or credit card. Speedpay charges a transaction fee for this service. Call Speedpay® at 1-877-429-4126 or visit us online to make a payment.
Visit here to learn more about all of our payment options.
Summer projects? Call 811 before you dig!
This August 11th, Alliant Energy is reminding you to call 811 before any digging project. It's important for everyone, from homeowners to professional contractors, to remember the importance of calling before you dig all year, but we hope this date, 8/11, will serve as a great reminder.
"Nationally, failure to call before digging results in more than 60,000 unintentional hits of underground utility lines annually, and we do not want anyone-'s project to become a statistic," said Richard Sublett, Compliance & Operational Performance Senior Manager for Alliant Energy. "Everyone needs to call, whether you're doing a little project like landscaping at home or a big project like putting drain tile in a farm field."
When you call 811, you are connected to your state's One Call center. That center will notify appropriate utility companies of the digging project. Homeowners and contractors should always call at least three business days before starting a project to allow time for locators to come to your home and mark the underground utility lines. Professional locators will come and mark the approximate locations of underground lines with flags and/or spray paint, for free.
Hitting a single line can cause injury, repair costs, fines and inconvenient outages for you and your neighbors. Every time you undertake a project, regardless of the size, you need to call 811. Installing a mailbox, building a deck, planting a tree, and laying a patio are all examples of digging projects that require a call to 811 before starting.
To contact your state-'s One Call center directly dial:
Iowa (Iowa One Call): 811 or 1-800-292-8989
Minnesota (Gopher State One Call): 811 or 1-800-252-1166
Stealthy ways to lower your cooling costs
You've already programmed your thermostat to bump up to 80 degrees while you're at work. You're even closing your blinds and drapes during the day, even though the neighbors are joking about living next to a vampire. Sounds like you're ready to learn about the next level of summer cooling tips. Here are some not-so-obvious ways to cut your summer cooling bills.
Sign up for Time of Day Pricing: Time of Day Pricing rewards you with a 50 percent discount for using energy during off-peak hours. There is a 40 percent premium for the energy you use during on-peak hours, and approximately $3.35 per month service charge for the special meter. Still, most Time of Day Pricing customers find they do save money. We suggest you try the service for one full year. If you find that you don't save, you can be removed from the program.
On-Peak Fall/Winter Hours: 7 a.m. - 8 p.m. Monday-Friday
On-Peak Spring/Summer Hours (daylight savings): 8 a.m. - 9 p.m. Monday-Friday
Time of Day Pricing tips
- Wait to run your dishwasher until evening
- Do laundry in the evening or on weekends
To sign up, visit us online or call 1-800-ALLIANT (1-800-255-4268).
Beef up your home's insulation: Insulation holds in cool air during the summer just like it retains warm air during the winter. And with Alliant Energy's insulation rebates (70 percent of cost, up to $750 in Iowa and up to $500 in Minnesota, for each type: in-wall, attic and foundation), your total out-of-pocket cost may be surprisingly low. Please note: you must first get your Home Energy Assessment before beginning your insulation project to qualify for Alliant Energy rebates.
Get a Home Energy Assessment: This is the single best thing you can do to lower your energy bills. A certified energy expert comes to your home, gives it a top-to-bottom energy inspection, pinpoints where energy loss is occurring, and tells you how to stop it. The expert will tell you which upgrades make the most sense for your home, and how much those upgrades will shave off your energy bill. He or she may even install some energy-saving measures on the spot. The Home Energy Assessment normally costs about $400, but for Alliant Energy customers in Iowa, it is free. In Minnesota, the assessment costs $25 per state regulation. In both states, your home must have been built before January 1, 2002 to qualify. Visit us online or call 1-866-ALLIANT (1-866-255-4268) to schedule your Home Energy Assessment today.
Sign up for the Appliance Cycling program (Iowa only): Appliance Cycling is a voluntary program in which Alliant Energy can remotely cycle off your central air conditioner for 15 minute increments during times of high energy demand, Monday through Friday from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. (never on holidays or weekends). In return, you receive an electric bill credit of $8 per month, June through September. Plus, if you have an electric water heater and allow us to cycle it during peak periods, we-'ll credit an additional $2 to your monthly bill. To sign up, visit us online or call 1-866-ALLIANT (1-866-255-4268).
Looking for more ways to keep cool on the cheap this summer? Check out these energy-saving ideas, Or, call 1-866-ALLIANT and ask for your free Cooling Your Home booklet.
Alliant Energy offers nine ways to pay your bill
It used to be there were only two ways to pay your utility bill: at the payment counter or through the mail. Times have changed; now you have many more options.
If you're the "set it and forget it type", the best option is Paperless Billing with Automatic Payment. Paperless Billing allows you to view your bill online, and Automatic Payment deducts your bill from your bank account each month, automatically.
Want to pick the day you pay your bill? Make a same-day payment from your bank account online or by phone. Pay your bill online, or call 1-800-ALLIANT (1-800-255-4268).
Paperless Billing, Automatic Payment and the Instant Payment Options are all FREE services. You can also make a payment through Western Union® Speedpay® using your credit or debit card, or pay with cash, check or money order at any Western Union Convenience Pay® agent location. Western Union charges a transaction fee for both of these services.
Check out the chart below, and get details on the many ways to pay your bill.
Budget for the winter heating costs and save for the holidays!
It may still be summer, but now is the time to sign up for Budget Billing in order to even out your winter heating costs. Budget Billing spreads your energy costs across the entire year, so you pay a set amount each month.
Since you'll know how much you'll pay, it really helps your monthly budget. You won't have to worry about a large heating bill making a surprise entrance during the holiday season this winter. Plus, it could also help you start saving money now for holiday expenses!
How Budget Billing works
Alliant Energy calculates your average yearly bill based on current fuel costs, anticipated fuel cost changes and the past 12 months of energy usage at your home.
We'll review your budget plan every six months to compare your actual energy usage costs to your budget amount. If there's a significant difference, we'll adjust your monthly budget amount up or down accordingly.
Is my meter correct?
What to do when your bill is higher than you think it should be.
When a bill arrives that seems unusually high, you might wonder ... maybe it's the meter?John Van Allen, Electric Meter Specialist for Alliant Energy says "Meters are designed for accuracy and longevity. We test them regularly and replace them at scheduled intervals, but some can last longer than 30 years! When we talk to customers, the overwhelming majority of the time it turns out they've had a change in usage," says Van Allen. "Many times it's something you might not think about." He suggests you consider the following:
- Have you added a new appliance or electronic equipment like a television or DVR? Or maybe you've added additional cell phones to charge or a game system.
- Did you replace a current appliance with a larger version?
- Kids on summer break using more energy
- Are you running your air conditioner and/or dehumidifier more?
- What about a pool pump, outdoor lighting or hot tub?
- A spare refrigerator in the garage has to work harder in warmer temperatures.
Here's the good news: a few easy fixes around the house can bring your bill back in line:
- Unplug electronics when not in use
- Shut off lights and game systems when not in use
- Use a clock-programmable thermostat to set the air conditioning a few degrees warmer at night or when you aren't home.
To compare your bill to last year's, go online to My Account. You can view up to 18 months of your usage and bills, as well as take care of your payments.
Preparing to move? Start or stop service online
Whether you're a college student moving into an apartment, a family moving to a new home, or an empty nester downsizing to a condo, Alliant Energy offers an easy way for residential customers to start or stop service online.
To start or stop residential service, visit us online.
If you are building a new home and need to establish service, download our residential service application and agreement for new electric and natural gas installation.
Where do recycled appliances go?
Did you know that when you recycle an old appliance, you could someday be walking on it or preparing your dinner on it? That's because all kinds of materials - from cement to countertops, and even cell phones - use materials from recycled appliances.
Alliant Energy works with a de-manufacturing plant in Marion, Iowa that reuses 95 percent of the materials from your appliances to create other items you use around your home. For example, the plastic can be used for cell phones, the metal can be made into nails or cans, and the glass shelves can be used in cement or various types of countertops.
In addition to the environmental benefits, when you recycle an old appliance such as a refrigerator or room air conditioner, a crew will pick up it up for free and Alliant Energy will give you a rebate for $25 or $50 depending on the appliance you are recycling. Get more information about appliance recycling.
For customer service, call 1-800-ALLIANT (1-800-255-4268).