Load Management is a program used to control the power to residential water heaters, central air conditioners, and off-peak electric heat.

To help reduce electric demand and control costs to our members, controlling is done when market prices are extremely high (economic control) or when peak electric demands are at their highest (capacity/demand control). As the demand for electricity increases, the ability to control loads is becoming more valuable to our members. By controlling electric loads during peak times, we are able to avoid purchasing power on the open market, which is considerably more expensive during high demand periods.

SHIFT for Savings

How to SHIFT for Savings without being on load management? 

Energy is in highest demand on hot summer and cold winter days. Shifting and reducing energy consumption during critical peak energy times helps lower cost at the wholesale level and rates keep rates stable and lower demand. 

Energy Demand Explained

Expressed as "kW" or "kilowatts", demand is defined as the rate at which a member consumes electricity at a given time. Demand can be thought of as the speedometer reading in your car. It is the rate at which energy is being consumed. 

Currently, members see a demand charge line on their energy bill as of 2023. There is currently no charge to members during peak energy demand times. By practicing shifting energy usage during load control times or peak energy times, this helps the co-op from having to implement demand charge on members' energy bills.  

Energy Demand Explained

Members can save $24 per year by participating in our load management program for central air conditioners.

The central air conditioner at your home may be shut off during peak periods of high electrical demand via a radio signal emitted from Dairyland Power Cooperative in La Crosse. During those peak periods, your air conditioner may be cycled, 15 minutes on – 15 minutes off, in an effort to lower electrical demand.

The load management equipment installed is not a time clock and control does not occur on a daily basis—only during peak demand periods.

  • There is no charge for the load management hardware.
  • A $8 credit will be applied during the months of June, July, and August.
  • The credit begins after the load management equipment is installed.

Available under established rules and regulations for service to central air conditioners of cooperative members subject to the following:

  1. The air conditioner must be a central system and not a window unit, wall unit, or mini-split system.
  2. Usage pattern must be such that the load can be cycled, 15 minutes on – 15 minutes off, during peak demand periods.
  3. Cooperative personnel will be given access to the load management equipment for maintenance and inspection purposes.
  4. A monthly credit will be paid during the billing months of June, July, and August, when energy usage is 400 kWhs or higher.
  5. Necessary load management equipment will be installed and maintained by a representative of the cooperative

Oakdale Electric Cooperative members can receive a special low dual fuel electric rate for electric heating systems that are wired for peak load control under the Dual Fuel Program.

Under this program, the electric heat is metered separately (dual (two) meters) and is switched off during peak demand periods via a load control receiver installed by a Oakdale Electric Cooperative technician. To receive your dual fuel electric rate, you will need to contact the office and fill out an agreement form.


  • Dual Fuel is having two sources of heat to heat your home. Having some form of controlled electric heat along with another source of heat (like a gas furnace or thermal storage) will provide the heat for your home through peak times when we control the electric heat.
  • We control your electric heat during peak times so we can offer you the lower dual fuel rate. We are able to keep these heating loads completely off of the peaks because you have a second source that is taking care of the heat loss during the control time.
  • The dual fuel rate is not as low during the summer months because there are not as many loads that we can effectively control to reduce the peaks during the summer months. Members typically would not like their air conditioners controlled for more than the fifteen minute cycling, and that means we cannot reduce the peaks as effectively during the summer as we can during the winter.

What can go on the Dual Fuel program?

  1. Electric Plenum Heaters
  2. Electric Boilers
  3. Electric Radiant Floor Heat (Typically placed in or under concrete, sometimes just under flooring)
    • Electric Cables
    • Electric Mats
    • Tubing (Hot water running through it from electric boiler)
  4. Electric Baseboard Heaters
  5. Electric Cove Heaters
  6. Hard Wired Electric Fire Places
  7. Electric Thermal Storage Heaters
  8. Electric Heat Pumps
    • Air Source Heat Pumps (Air to Air)
    • Ground Source Heat Pumps (Geothermal)

Remember another source other than electric is needed to carry the heat load during peak times when we shut these off.

Electric Water Heater Incentive

A 50 gallon or larger electric water heater can be put on the off-peak water heater load management program. The electricity to the water heater is shut off via a radio signal like the other programs. The water heater can be shut down for a maximum of 4 or 6 hours (depending on the size of the heater) in a consecutive 10 hour period. A $3.00 monthly credit applies to each electric account with a water heater.  The credit applies with energy usage of 200 kWh per month.



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