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How to Save Money on Your Puget Sound Energy Bill

How to Save Money on Your Puget Sound Energy Bill

Puget Sound Energy offers a number of options that can help renters and homeowners save money. If you’re a PSE customer, you don’t want to miss this!

Looking for help with a different power company? Click here!

When we bought our first house, our power bill was significantly higher than expected. Puget Sound Energy helped us make payment arrangements for our bill and arranged for a contractor to visit our home to offer specific cost-saving advice.

Check out these helpful payment options!

We opted to enroll in Budget Billing after we saw how drastically our bills changed every season. With Budget Billing, Puget Sound Energy averages your annual power usage into equal payments. During the last month of the year, you’ll have a settlement month where you’ll have to pay any differences between your actual usage and what you’ve paid.

Budget Billing sounded like a great idea to us, so we enrolled. It ended up being a total DISASTER. We ended up with a $3,000+ settlement bill because Puget Sound Energy had so drastically miscalculated our bill. In fact, one supervisor I spoke to called it “the worst case of budget billing mismanagement (they) had ever seen.” Fortunately, we were able to get several local agencies to pledge $2,300 toward that high bill!

I still believe that Budget Billing can be a very good choice, especially since they have made some changes to the program. They now monitor your account often and adjust your bill to reduce the chances of a large charge at the end of your Budget Payment Plan year, which is in June. 

They now review your actual energy usage and monthly payment in the months of March, June, and November. Depending how you use your energy, your monthly payments could increase, decrease, or remain the same as it was. Just make sure you do NOT enroll until you’ve lived at your current address for at least 12 months, to help avoid a problem as the one we had!

The good news is, if you are careful with your energy usage and Puget Sound Energy determines that you have over-paid on your bill, you can get a refund for the amount paid or a credit to your account.

To be eligible to apply for the Budget Payment Plan, you must be in good standing with no outstanding balances on your bill. You can’t pick either gas or electric if you have both at your house. The program will be for both of them. It is important to note that they will remove you from the program if you miss 2 consecutive bills.

Get free stuff to help you save on your PSE bill!

Puget Sound Energy has numerous energy efficiency rebates and discounts that you can use to make you home more efficient. From energy efficient lighting to energy assessments, you can take advantage any and all of the following programs that Puget Sound Energy offers.

A Home Energy Assessment

Before you start to change things about your home, it is always best to get a home energy assessment. With this free, online assessment you can figure out what can be making you energy bill so high. 

After taking the assessment, which is a 5 to 7 minute questionnaire about your home and the energy usage within, you will get a review that lists suggestions and gives you insight on how you can improve your energy usage and lower your bill. 

To take the assessment, you have to be a Puget Sound Energy member so you can sign in to your account.

Smart Thermostat Rebate

If you have never have a smart thermostat, it is awesome. You can control and monator your heat and AC from your phone even when you are not at home. You can set it to turn on or shut up according to your comfort needs. 

This program allows you to get a $75 rebate when you purchase a smart thermostat at a participating retail, or online retail, store, including the PSE Online Marketplace where you can get an instant $75 rebate at checkout if you are eligible. 

Appliance Rebates

You would be surprised how many people still use old washers and dryers that can cost them hundreds, if not thousands, per year in energy costs. So, an appliance rebate could be really helpful.  Puget Sound Energy will give you a $50 rebate for purchasing an Energy Start certified front loader washing machine

Click here to apply for $50 back on your front loader. They may even take the old one for you for free!

Lighting Rebates

When you think about saving energy, you may not think about your light bulbs, but some light bulbs can truly burn through your energy usage and your pockets. 

PSE will pay you to get rid of your old light bulbs and install Energy Star qualified LED light bulbs and fixtures from participating retailers. They will even take your old bulbs for you. 

Click here to learn more about why you should choose LED light bulbs and here for LED FAQs.

Insulation Rebates

If you have a house that was built before 1990, you could qualify for an insulation rebate. We don’t realize how much warm air we lose in the winter (and cool air in the summer) through leaks and cracks in our home. Fixing this issue can be a cost-effective way to lower your energy bill and save you money. 

The total amount you can receive for the rebate depends on how you work you need to get down to make your home properly weatherized. If you are a low income customer, you may qualify for one or both of two programs: 

PSE’s  Home Weatherization Assistance program 

This Home Waetherization Assistance program is a partnership between PSE, federal, and state funding resources to get low income family homes weatherized with free upgrades to make your home more efficient and lower you monthly bill.

Efficiency Boost

This program is for moderate income customers who do not qualify for the Home Weatherization Assistance program. Efficiency Boost offers even higher rebates on upgrades to make you home more energy efficient. 

To apply for this program, you should contact the Energy Advisor either through the online message page, by email, or by calling (1-800-562-1482).

To receive the insulation rebate for upgrades on your home, you must use a PSE Recommended Energy Professional (REP) contractor or a contractor authorized by PSE to do the install. Your REP contractor determines and provides the instant rebate when you make the purchase.

Windows Rebates

Customers with old, energy-efficient windows can get money off replacement windows for their homes. You can get either $50 per window for a total of $750 or $100 per window with a total rebate of $1,500, depending on the U-Factor of the windows you get. 

Because the lower the U-Factor, the better the window’s insulation, this program will give you more money for installing a window with a lower U-Factor. 

  • $50 per window for a U-Factor of 0.23 to 0.30. 
  • $100 per window for a U-Factor of 0.22 or below

You can apply for this rebate here

Heating Rebates

Puget Sound Energy will provide a rebate for either your electric or gas heating system to help make your purchase easier and more affordable. This rebate is for customers with single-family homes (new construction, multi-family, and commercial accounts are not eligible for these rebate programs). They have several different types of rebates for both electric and gas heating systems. The following are some of the ones they offer: 

Electric

Electric Resistance to Ductless Heat Pump Conversion Rebate

In the old days. They used electric resistance (an electric forced air furnace, baseboard, cable, wall heater, or electric hydronic) to heat homes. Admittedly, it was more efficient and safer than fireplaces or wood stoves, but you can go ductless these days. 

Suppose you have an electric resistance system as your primary heating source. In that case, you may qualify for a rebate if you convert to an AHRI Certified Ductless heating system up to $800 in value and tons off your monthly payment.

Electric Forced-Air Furnace to Air-Source Heat Pump Conversion Rebate

If you are an electric customer with a forced-air furnace in a single-family home, you could get up to $1,500 to upgrade your system to a much more energy-efficient unitary air-source heat pump system. 

The new heat pump must be AHRI certified with an HSPF of 8.5 or higher, and it must comply with the local code requirements set by the federal and state departments.

Gas

Natural Gas Boiler Rebate

If you purchase an AHRI Certified or Energy Star rated high-efficiency natural gas boiler for your single-family home, Puget Sound Energy will give you a $700 rebate. 

The new boiler should have a 95% Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating or better on or after January 2022. Boilers installed in 2021 may be able to get a reduced rebate, 

Natural Gas Forced-Air Furnace Rebate

If you get a forced-air furnace for your single-family home that is AHRI certified or Energy Star rated, PSE will give a $700 rebate on your purchase. 

The new forced-air furnace should have a 95% AFUE rating or better on or after January 2022. Boilers installed in 2021 may be able to get a reduced rebate. You won’t get the rebate if you install the furnace with a new or existing heat pump.

Natural Gas Integrated Space and Water Heat Rebate

When you purchase and install a qualifying integrated space- and water-heating system for your single family home, you will receive an $800 rebate from PSE, 

The integrated water- and space-heating systems should either:

  • Be an AHRI .91 or be a single source Energy Star certified EF natural gas tankless water heater.
  • A 95% AFUE or single source Energy Star qualified natural gas boiler.

The system should be your primary source of heat in your housing unit. 

All rebates are only currently for existing single-family homes. Check for more guidelines on the site. Click here to find out about incentives you can get if you live in a multifamily home.

Water Heating Rebates

Water heaters can take a massive bite out of your utility bill if the one you have is not energy efficient enough. Puget Sound Energy will provide a rebate for placing your old water heater with a heater that will save you money on your monthly bill. These are the types of rebates they offer:

Electric Hybrid Heat Pump Water Heater

If you buy a high-efficiency electric hybrid heat pump water heater at a participating Lowes or The Home Depot store, you can get an instant $500 rebate off the item’s price during checkout. 

They will not ask you for an application, proof of eligibility, or a receipt. If you have questions, or if you didn’t receive your rebate, you can call an Energy Advisor at 1-800-562-1482. 

Natural Gas Storage Water Heater Rebate

Customers with natural gas can get a $50 rebate to upgrade their water heater to a qualifying energy-efficient natural gas storage water heater. To qualify for this rebate, you have to:

  • Be a PSE residential natural gas customer.
  • Live in a single-family home.
  • Must be installed in the PSE gas service area. 
  • Equipment must be new.
  • Must comply with federal, state, and local codes.
  • Energy Star qualified.

Check the site for other guidelines.

Natural Gas Tankless Water Heater Rebate

PSE will give natural gas customers a $250 rebate for upgrading to an efficient natural gas tankless water heater. To qualify for this rebate, you have to:

  • Be a PSE residential natural gas customer. 
  • Live in a single-family home.
  • Must be Energy Star qualified. 
  • Must be installed in PSE’s gas service area.
  • Equipment must be new. 
  • It cannot be a warranty replacement. 
  • Must comply with federal, state, and local codes.

Check the site for other guidelines. 

Manufactured Home Rebates

If you have or are buying a manufactured home, you may be able to get rebates for upgrading to more energy-efficient items. Here are some of the rebates they offer:

  • Lighting – $2 – $10 back depending on the type of lights. Must be Energy Star approved.
  • Smart Thermostats – $75 rebate on select models.
  • Kine Voltage Connected Thermostats – $75 rebate on up to 5 select models.
  • Front Loader Washer – $50 rebate.
  • Windows – Between $200 – $2000 depending on the U-Factor of the window.
  • Weatherization – Rebates vary depending on what you need to upgrade.
  • Heating – $1000 – $2400 depending on the conversation you make.
  • Water Heating – $100 – $500 depending on the type of upgrade you make.
  • The Manufactured Homes –  You can get up to $2000 for buying your new manufactured home!

Check for other guidelines on the site. 

New High-Performance Homes Incentives

You can get money back if you build a home that is even more efficient than the state code calls for. With this incentive plan, you can build up to 3 attached units (like townhouses), but the home must use PSE electricity and/or natural gas. 

You can only apply to this program while your home, or project, is in the construction phase. During the process of building your home, you state in communication with a rater who can help guide you through the process. They will help you make your home to a higher standard than Washington State’s energy code.

The rater will evaluate your home, and then you can apply for the program. They want you to fill out the application and email it back with a W-9 for the person who got the incentive check.  

Check the site to learn more about other guidelines. 

Get help with your Puget Sound Energy bill!

Local community action agencies can help you with your Puget Sound Energy bill! You may qualify for assistance through PSE HELP, LIHEAP, and the Weatherization Assistance Program if you’re low income!

LIHEAP

The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) can pay a set amount toward your energy costs every year. This government program is designed to help make your energy bill more afforable for your family so you can receive and maintain dependable energy and utility services in your home when you need it.

This program will also help you with the weatherization of your home if you can’t afford to participte in the rebate program PSE offers. 

Click here to find the LIHEAP agency closest to you in your county. 

Weatherization Assistance Program

The Weatherization Assistance Program does not pay any portion of your current energy costs, but it does help reduce your ongoing energy bills by providing free, energy-efficient upgrades to your home.

When you qualify, an energy adviser will visit your home and identify the most efficient upgrades, such as insulation installation, air leak sealing, washing machine replacements, even window replacements! You could receive FREE improvements worth several thousand dollars!

PSE HELP

Puget Sound Energy Home Energy Lifeline Program (PSE HELP) can pay up to an additional $1,000 toward your Puget Sound Energy gas or electric bill per year. The amount you receive will depend on your household size, monthly income, and your energy costs. 

To apply, you should first see if your income qualifies and fill out the documents, like you Photo ID and Proof of Income, on the site. It is best to find your local agency before you start the process just in case you have questions. Once you are ready to apply, you can do so on your PSE account.

The income limits for PSE HELP are a bit higher than those for LIHEAP. If you qualify for LIHEAP, you can get both. But, even if you don’t qualify for LIHEAP, you may still be able to get PSE HELP!

The Salvation Army Warm Home Fund

This is a contribution based program that is run by the Salvation army. Charitable customers, employees, and even investors pay into this program to help people who may need it. 

This is a temporary program for families with a financial hardship. You can find your local agency to get help if you are having trouble paying your bill. 

The Salvation Army Warm Home Fund

This is a contribution based program that is run by the Salvation army. Charitable customers, employees, and even investors pay into this program to help people who may need it. 

This is a temporary program for families with a financial hardship. You can find your local agency to get help if you are having trouble paying your bill. 

Make a Payment Arrangement

If you make too much money to qualify for assistance with your bill, you may still be able to get help through a payment arrangement to avoid disconnection. Instead of having to pay you large bill all at one time, PSE will work with you to lower you payments to a manageable level to help you get caught up. 

You can stretch the payments to a span on 18 months if you need to make the payments low enough to handle. You can split your payments into weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly payments; whatever works best for you.

Get more help in Washington State!

Puget Sound Energy is the largest utility provider in Washington State, serving over 1 million customers across ten counties. However, many other Washington State power companies offer discounts, rebates, and help for low-income customers. To see them, click here.

Save even MORE money in Washington!

Nicole leads the Low Income Relief team with over 20 years of professional research and writing experience. Nicole started Low Income Relief after a personal experience with poverty. When her husband was medically discharged from the US Army, their family experienced tremendous financial hardship. Nicole was able to gather help from multiple community agencies and move into a nearby low income housing unit in just two weeks! Since then, Nicole has been dedicated to helping low income families in crisis. She regularly spends hundreds of hours combing through countless resources to make sure that Low Income Relief has the most comprehensive and complete resource directories on the internet today. Prior to starting Low Income Relief, Nicole worked as a novelist, journalist, ghostwriter and content creator. Her work has been featured in various print and online publications, including USA Today, eHow, Livestrong, Legal Beagle, The Daily Herald, The Chronicle and more.

Denise Mino

Monday 25th of December 2017

This information was very helpful. Thank you Nicole fortaking the time to research and put this all together.

Nicole

Wednesday 27th of December 2017

You're very welcome! Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment! :)

Corena Oppel

Saturday 24th of December 2016

My parents just moved to Thurston County they are keeping there house cold at 65 degrees and there electric bill was 285. and rising so far this winter . They are not low income but fixed income do you offer a monthly rate bill that is year around or any senior discounts ?

Nicole

Saturday 24th of December 2016

Hi, Corena! I am not actually affiliated with PSE. I'm just a researcher and PSE customer. All of their discounts, rebates and other programs are listed in this article. They do offer a budget billing that creates a consistent monthly bill. I've found that very helpful.

mary galen

Wednesday 1st of June 2016

how to save in whatcom county please?

Nicole

Wednesday 1st of June 2016

Sure! I can look into that. Are you with the Whatcom County PUD?