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Kill a Watt and energy consumption Tracking

Electrical District No. 3 is now offering a free program which helps customers track household energy usage. The Energy Consumption Tracking program enables customers to reduce energy usage and save on monthly utility expenses by using a Kill A Watt™ meter. This device can help to see which appliances use the most energy and help detect “vampire” electronics, which can use energy even when turned off.

How it Works?

Customers can borrow a Kill A Watt™ meter for free by visiting the ED3 customer service office located at: 19756 N Maricopa RD STE 101 #101 Maricopa, AZ 85139. An ED3 Customer Service Representative will present the customer with the appropriate form for this program. The customer will then be presented with a Kill A Watt™ meter along with helpful information and instructions on using the meter to calculate energy consumption.

Note: Kill A Watt™ meter must be returned by agreed upon date. If the Kill A Watt™ meter is not returned on time or is returned in damaged condition, the customer will be billed $21.00 for the cost of the device.

For further questions you may have in regard to signing up for the Energy Consumption Tracking program, please call 520-424-9021 and speak to a Customer Service Representative. We look forward to assisting you.


General Appliances

    1.  Turn off unnecessary lights, TVs, computers and other electrical appliances when not in use.

    2.  When possible, replace older appliances with newer, high-efficiency models.

    3.  Run only full (but not overloaded) loads in your dishwasher.

    4.  Set the temperature in your refrigerator between 37ºF and 40ºF.

    5.  Keep your freezer section at 5ºF. If you have a separate freezer for longer-term storage, it should be kept at 0ºF.

    6.  Unplug extra or unused appliances.

    7.  Get rid of that second refrigerator

    8.  Vacuum your refrigerators condenser coils (for most models, once a year will do the job.)

    9.  Use small electric appliances or a microwave for cooking instead of your stove or oven.

    10.  Do dishes and wash and dry clothes after 8pm.

Refrigerators & Freezers

Refrigerators and freezers are two of the most significant energy-consuming appliances. Only comfort conditioning (heating and cooling) and water heating use more energy. While most people are aware of the importance of saving energy on heating, cooling, and water heating, the energy consumed by refrigerators and freezers is often overlooked.

A ten-year-old refrigerator or freezer can cost considerably more to operate than a new energy-efficient model of the same size. Improvements in the design of compressors and cooling coils, better insulation, tighter door seals, and other design improvements all contribute to the higher efficiencies of newer models.


    1.  Install compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs). Even though they are more expensive than incandescent bulbs, they pay for themselves with the energy savings. They also last 6 to 10 times longer.

    2.  Install lighting controls like dimmers, timers or motion sensors.

    3.  Use automatic timers to regulate lights when you're away from home.

The following table shows a few typical incandescent lamps and the appropriate fluorescent replacements:

chart of common light bulbs

* A-19 is a designation for the standard incandescent lamp shape.

Air Conditioning

    1.  Set the thermostat as high as possible. The minimum recommended energy-efficient summer temperature is 80 to 82°F.

    2.  To cool your house efficiently, your air conditioner must be cool itself, so try to keep it in the shade. An air conditioner exposed to direct sunlight will use up to five percent more energy than a shaded unit.

    3.  Air conditioners installed on the north sides of houses generally use less energy than those on the south or west sides where it's sunny.

    4.  If your air conditioner already is in the sun, you can build a simple wooden shade screen for it. But don't block the air flow.

    5.  Cool only the rooms you use. But don't close all vents. Closing too many actually reduces operating efficiency.

    6.  Turn air conditioner thermostat setting up 5 to 10 degrees when you leave the house for several hours.

    7.   Don't switch your air conditioner to a colder setting when you turn it on. It won't cool the room any faster but it will waste energy when you forget to turn it up again.

    8.  Use a programmable thermostat on your central air conditioner. Hardware stores sell timers that will automatically start your air conditioner shortly before you return home. You may never notice the difference until you see the savings on your electric bill.

    9.  Minimize the amount of heat entering your home by drawing shades and curtains on hot days. Do not leave windows and doors open while your air conditioner is running.

    10.  You can save energy by caring for air conditioner coils. They won't work efficiently unless they're clean and straight so check them every spring. Have a licensed contractor tune up the air conditioner.

    11.  If the house is 3 or more years old, have a licensed contractor check the air conditioning system duct work for leaks. Seal the AC duct work.

    12.  Install a high efficiency air conditioner at least a 13 SEER if air cooled or at least a 14 SEER if water cooled.

    13.  If the coils are bent, you can carefully straighten them with a plastic spatula. Or call a service person to repair them.

    14.  If they're dusty, dirty or clogged with old leaves, use your household vacuum cleaner. If the vacuum attachment won't fit between the coils, reverse the air flow and blow the dirt away instead.

    15.  Air conditioners are equipped with a filter to protect fan blades, the motor and other parts.

    16.  Change the filters. Clogged filters will use up to five percent more energy than a clean one, so check your filter at the beginning of the cooling season.

    17.  Permanent filters can be cleaned according to the manufacturer's instructions. Disposable filters should be replaced every month or two while the unit is in use.

    18.  Add attic insulation. Determine the amount of attic insulation is currently installed in the home. We recommend an R Value of 49. (R Value is the rating of the resistance to heat transfer of the insulation).

    19.  Install solar screens on the windows or install awnings.

Summer Time Tips

Pool Operating Tips

    1.   Avoid running your pool pump 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Your monthly electric use would be approximately 1380 kWhs if you operate your 2.0 horsepower pool pump around the clock. By reducing the run time to just 8 hours per day, your monthly electric use would drop to about 425 kWhs, a savings of 65%. To estimate your pool pump's most efficient run time, see water filtration guidelines.

kw = horsepower X 0.746 per horsepower divided by efficiency of the motor

Example:  Horsepower X kW per HP = Motor Efficiency = kW Used X Hours = kWh Used X Total Days = Total Consumption
2 (Horsepower) X .746 (kW per HP) = 1.49 Divided By 84% (Motor Efficiency) = 1.77 (kW) X 24 (Total Hours) = 42.48 (Total kWh) X 30 (Total Days) = 1274 (Total Consumption Used)

    2.  Make sure your pool pump is the right size for your pool.

    3.  When replacing your pool pump, consider a model with an energy efficient pump motor.

    4.   Water Filtration Guide

Use the table below to estimate your pool pump's most efficient run time. Select your pool pump's horsepower and the gallons of your pool to find the corresponding pool pump run-time per day.

Pool Pump Water filtration guidelines

**Some flow rates may vary greatly depending on the size of the pool pipe and other restrictions within the path the water flow.

Other Summer Time Tips

Home Cooling - Ceiling Fans

In the past, prior to the widespread use of air conditioning, ceiling fans were the primary source of cooling for many residences. As air conditioning became more available and affordable, the use of ceiling fans declined. Due to rising energy costs and increasing customer conservation awareness, ceiling fan use is now on the upswing. In addition to saving energy, ceiling fans are available in a wide variety of styles, and can enhance the room decor.

Ceiling fans are an excellent way to help keep energy costs down while maintaining occupant comfort levels. Ceiling fan operation during the cooling season can help keep room occupants cool due to the "wind chill" effect. This effect is caused by the evaporation of the moisture on the surface of the skin due to the movement of air, resulting in the person feeling cooler.

Fans can also be used in conjunction with the air conditioning to help reduce energy costs. The "wind chill" effect allows the air conditioner to be used less while maintaining the same degree of comfort for room occupants. For example, you can move the setting on your thermostat from 78 degrees to 80 degrees and still keep the occupants comfortable. This increase in the thermostat of 2 degrees can result in reduction of 8% to 12% in air conditioning energy use, and a significant savings on your summer electric bill.

Ceiling fans are economical to operate as they consume very little energy. For example, a typical fan operating at high speed uses approximately 100 watts of power. Assuming that the fan is operated 10 hours per day with an energy costs of 8 cents per kWh, then the cost of operation will be 8 cents per day. At lower speeds these operating costs will be even less. This low operating cost and the potential reduction in cooling and heating cost make the ceiling fan one of the best energy saving devices on the market.

Home Cooling - Window Shading

Radiant or solar heat gain through windows can cause occupant discomfort and increased air conditioning costs. The more glass your home has, especially on the east, west, and south exposures, the more important window shading is to improve comfort and reduce air conditioning bills.

There are many choices of shading material and placement. Interior shading devices include Venetian blinds, shades, and draperies. These devices can block up to 65% of the sun's heat what would be transferred through the window. Insulated drapes or shades can be used to reduce heating needs in the winter and heat gain in the summer.

Exterior shading can block 95% of the sun's heat. Horizontal overhangs, awnings, tinted and reflective films, and louvers are commonly used for exterior shading. Some window films also make the glass more difficult to break, thus making them an ideal choice for security reasons as well. An awning might be preferred for reducing solar gains when building identification or aesthetic improvements are desired.

Winter Time Tips

Winter Operation - Ceiling Fans

Ceiling fans can also help keep occupants comfortable and save energy in the winter heating season. These fans pull the heated air that has risen to the ceiling and redirect in to the occupant levels. This results in a more effective use of the heating system and lower energy consumption. Fans used during the winter should be operated at low speeds, allowing the air to gently circulate without causing a "wind chill" effect.

Most ceiling fans are designed to be reversible for winter operation. In this mode, room air is pulled from the floor level, circulated through the warmer air near the ceiling, and circulated back to the floor level. This mode of operation allows the warmer ceiling air to be directed downward without blowing directly on the occupants. Care should be taken to ensure that the direction of airflow for these reversible fans is downward in summer and upward in the winter for maximum effectiveness.

Winter Operation - Stay Warm!

    •  Turn down the thermostat when going to bed or when you will be active around the house. Programmable thermostats can be used to adjust temperature settings up to several times per day according to a preset schedule.
    •  Be sure to check your insulation in attics and ceilings, as well as basements and crawl spaces.
    •  People produce heat. If you are hosting a gathering, turn down the thermostat and save money!
    •  Open drapes and shades during the day to let in the sun. Close them at night to keep out the cold.
    •  Limit the use of electric heaters. Electric heaters are high wattage appliances and their use will add up! They are best used to heat small spaces as a supplemental heater. If you are using an electric heater for supplemental heat, try and use them just to take the chill off the room and then shut them off.

Winter Operation - Check the Air Flow

    •  Don't block heating registers, move furniture to allow heat to flow freely, and make sure all return air openings are unobstructed.
    •  Turn off kitchen, bath and other ventilating fans when you are done. In one hour, these fans can pull a house full of warm air right out of your homes!
    •  Make sure your fireplace is properly vented. If you do not have a proper amount of outside air for combustion, your fireplace will draw heated air from inside your house.
    •  Window air conditioners are conduits for cold air. When possible, the unit should be removed, cleaned and put into winter storage.
    •  If you have a ceiling fan, make sure to reverse the motor in order to disperse the warm air collecting near the ceiling.

Do It Yourself Tips

Check Equipmnt

    •  Good furnace and air conditioning maintenance is important. Clean or replace your furnace and air conditioner filters monthly throughout the heating and cooling season.

    •  Install a programmable thermostat to adjust temperature settings according to a preset schedule. This way you can warm up or cool down your rooms just before you wake up or get home.

    •  Replacing appliances at home? Look for energy efficient features while shopping for new appliances.

    •  Fix any leaky faucets. A small drip can be the equivalent of wasting a bath tub full of hot water each month!

Prevent Heat Loss

    •  Replace drafty doors and windows. These will not only reduce energy consumption for years to come, but will increase the value and beauty of your home.

    •  Call an insulation contractor to determine the insulation levels in the ceiling or attic. Insulation is designed to resist heat flow both into and out of your home.

    •  Seal air ducts to prevent heat loss. A qualified contractor will inspect your system, perform pressurization tests, and complete any repairs necessary.

    •  Make sure you fireplace is properly vented. If you do not have a proper amount of outside air for combustion, your fireplace will draw heated air from inside your house.

Replacing Equipmnt

    •  Replace older water heaters with energy efficient models.

    •  A ten-year old refrigerator or freezer can cost considerably more to operate than a new energy-efficient model of the same size.

    •  How about a new fireplace to keep you cozy? Today's model's are more efficient and help prevent heat loss to the outdoors.

    •  Have a contractor install energy efficient windows. For example, double-pane windows with low-e coating can reduce heating bills substantially in cold climates compared to uncoated, single-pane windows.

Other Important Information

Where does Electrical District No. 3 purchase its power from?

Q: Where does Electrical District No. 3 (ED3) purchase its power from:

A: The District purchases power from the Arizona Power Authority (Hoover Power), Western Area Power Authority (WAPA - Salt Lake City Area Integrated Projects “SLCA / IP” and Parker Davis Power), and other energy marketing firms such as Sempra, SRP and the Southwest Public Power Agency (SPPA). In addition, the District is a participant in the Hoover Power Resource Exchange Program and a party to an Integrated Resource Scheduling Agreement which permits the District and other similarly situated utilities to integrate and exchange Hoover, SLCA / IP, and Parker Davis power resources.

The District anticipates that current federal resources under contract and continuation of the Integrated Resource Scheduling procedures and Hoover Resource Exchange Program will be sufficient for the District to meet a portion of its monthly power and energy requirements. However, a larger portion of the District’s requirements must be met through Supplemental Power Agreements.

Q: What is a Purchase Power Cost Adjuster ("PPCA")?

A: The PPCA is intended to pass along increases (and decreases) in monthly power costs above those included in the base rates. The PPCA is calculated each month based on the historical actual average cost of purchased power above or below the base purchased power cost. This monthly PPCA will be applied to all energy usage for all customer classes. The PPCA mechanism would also work in reverse - as a refund to customers if purchased power costs are below the base purchased power cost.

Q: Why does ED3 have a Purchased Power Cost Adjuster ("PPCA")?

A: The PPCA acts as a mechanism to pass along actual changes in power costs on a monthly basis. The alternative would be for ED3 to base its rates at the beginning of each year on a forecast of future power costs. Rates based on this forecast may significantly over or under collect revenues from our customers.

How To Stay Safe During Power Outages

1. Assemble an emergency kit. Have these items on hand and make sure they can last for at least 72 hours: a flashlight; batteries; a portable radio; at least 1 gallon of water per person; non-perishable foods such as canned goods and granola bars; a can opener; an extra set of clothes; durable shoes; blankets; items to help pass the time, such as a deck of cards; a first aid kit that includes prescription drugs as needed; a whistle. You can make smaller versions of this kit for your car or office and stock it with such practical items.

2. Take special steps if you have special needs. Do you rely on life-support equipment or other power-dependent equipment to maintain your health? If so, you should put a plan in place, possibly an emergency generator for your home or an arrangement to stay at a health-care facility that has backup power.

3. Keep your refrigerated food safe. If the power goes out, try not to open your refrigerator or freezer doors so you don't lose cold air unnecessarily. The contents of a full fridge should keep for about six hours; the contents of a full freezer should keep for as long as two days. Do not taste foods to see if they are ok. If you are in doubt of a food item, be sure to throw it out.

4. Avoid shock and electrocution. Never do any of these things: operate a generator in rainy or wet conditions; touch a generator with wet hands; use electrical appliances that have gotten wet; touch exposed cables or electrical wires in your home; get near or touch downed or sagging power lines outside; or engage in an extremely dangerous practice known as "back feeding," which involves connecting a generator to your home's wiring by plugging the generator into a wall outlet without the use of an appropriate power transfer switch.

5. Don't get overheated. If the power goes out when its hot outside, take these steps; stay in the lowest level of your home where it will be coolest; put on light-weight, light-colored clothing; drink lots of water, even if you don't feel thirsty; remember to give your pets fresh, cool water; and visit an air-conditioned movie theatre, mall or store if heat is overwhelming.

6. Know when to say when. No one wants to leave the comfort of his or her own home - but sometimes you unavoidably must do just that. If the power remains out for days, relocate to the home of a friend or relative who still has electricity or go to an emergency shelter. Most shelters will have power, heat, food, water, bedding, extra clothing and anything else that you and your family will need to stay alive.

How to Reset a Breaker

    1.  Identify the breaker that needs to be reset. It usually appears red on the toggle handle, and is not in the OFF position.

    2.  Move handle to OFF position. (Make sure it is completely in the off position so that it fully gets reset)

    3.  Push handle past OFF position.

    4.  Return handle to ON position. If the breaker does not reset, contact an electrician.