FAQ

Ask a question about YEC & you could win $25!

YEC will publish a member’s question pertaining to YEC and provide the answer in the South Carolina Living magazine. If your question is selected, you will receive $25. To enter, submit your question by emailing it to Joyce.Baker@yorkelectric.net or by mailing it to York Electric Cooperative, P.O. Box 150, York, SC 29745–Attention: SCL Q & A. The deadline for receiving questions is the first of the month, but questions that come in after the deadline will be considered for the following month. One question per member per month will be accepted.

Alternate Forms of Energy FAQ

How much did the project cost?

The projected cost, which Santee Cooper is providing with monies generated from Green Power, is $35,449.

Will members be able to view the output of the solar panels?

Yes. It will be connected to an internet monitoring service so YEC’s internet will be able to display the output on a monitor in the lobbies of both offices and on its website. Santee Cooper will also display a link on its website.

Why is York Electric interested in Electric Vehicles?

1) It saves customers money – Filling up an electric vehicle is cheaper than fueling a traditional car.

2) The environment will benefit – Widespread adoption of electric vehicles will cut emissions.

3) Energy Independence – Electric vehicles reduce our dependence on foreign oil and will lead to more local jobs.

Where is the nearest charger to your office?

On site at our main headquarters. Address: 1385 East Alexander Love Highway, York, SC

When will the additional purchase price be justifiable for the average vehicle buyer?

A lot can change in a year, but based on current fuel prices, probably 4 years (2017). There are more models becoming available in 2013 and as battery prices improve, the timeframe could shorten.

What is York Electric doing to study electric vehicles for its members?

1) In 2007 we began collecting data;

2)  We have been corroborating with Duke on their plans and data collection; Duke energy currently has one of the nation’s largest fleets of plug-in electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric cars for research and development purposes. This includes vehicles from Toyota, Tesla, Ford, General Motors, Chrysler, Nissan and the Southeast’s first plug-in hybrid electric utility “bucket” truck.

3) We are developing an overall electric vehicle plan for 2013 to include beta sites for in- home chargers and special electric rates to incentivize vehicle charging on non-peak times;

4) We are sharing more information with our members about where this technology is going.

Is York Electric opposed to the development of solar energy?

Not at all. The sun’s energy is a great, clean resource which we should utilize.

When will solar energy be cost effective for the average residential member to install?

Every year the cost of solar energy systems decrease. Even with these decreases, the cost justification is heavily dependent upon government tax credits. Presently payback ranges between 9 and 12 years, but this could change drastically if incentives were to increase or decrease.

What type of solar panels are they and where were they made?

They are Sharp panels and were made in Memphis, Tennessee.

How much does 8Kw generate?

Approximately 50KWH per day (on good days). On a good day, the solar panels will be able to supply the Fort Mill office and also put extra on the grid. YEC is putting all the electricity generated back on the grid instead of tying it back to the office. The panels have the potential to generate approximately half of the office’s use for a year.

What is Green Power?

Green Power is electricity generated by renewable resources like the sun and methane gas that is found in landfills. These resources are replenished naturally. Green Power is generated by Santee Cooper and distributed by electric cooperatives across the state.

Why does York Electric offer Green Power?

Green Power provides you a direct opportunity to help our environment by supporting electricity generated from renewable power sources. By voluntarily participating in the Green Power program, you and York Electric are proving your commitment to community by helping improve the environment.

Where does my money go?

All revenue from the sale of Green Power is reinvested in future development of renewable energy resources such as solar energy, and educational projects such as Solar Schools.

How will I know that this Green Power is actually being run into my home?

The renewable energy that you will be purchasing is not directly routed to your home, but by subscribing you are helping to support the purchase of additional clean energy and encouraging more investment statewide in environmentally friendly ways to generate power. For every environmentally friendly kilowatt hour purchased by cooperative members, one less kilowatt hour is being purchased from other less environmentally friendly sources such as coal-based energy.

Does Green Power really make a difference?

By trapping methane gas and turning it into useful energy, your electric cooperative is helping to rid the environment of a dangerous greenhouse gas. Fortunately, as fuel, the gas is a renewable energy and has no waste. What’s more, for just 2 dimes a day Green Power has the environmental impact of not driving a car for almost 3 months or planting over 1/3 acre of trees for a year.

Whom should I contact for more information?

Member Services Department: 803-684-4248
Email
York Electric Cooperative, Inc.
P.O. Box 150, York, SC 29745
Drop by: Any local member services office

How much does Green Power cost?

Each 100 kilowatt-hour block will add a mere $3 to your monthly electric bill. One block (100 kWh) is approximately 10 percent of a typical household’s monthly energy use. There is no equipment to buy, and you won’t have to change your lifestyle one bit. You can sign up for as many blocks as you like, knowing that you are doing your part in helping the environment and making renewable resources and facilities a reality.

How will my electricity bill be calculated?

Usage rate: Your residential rate plus $3 for each 100kWh block of Green Power.

Taxes and Fees: You must also pay all applicable federal, state, and local taxes as well as any applicable fees.

  • $86.50 2004 monthly electricity cost
  • $ 3.00 Green Power premium
  • $89.50 Total

How will I be billed?

Your Green Power charge will be listed on your monthly electric bill as an additional line item.

Will my electricity rates change over time?

Rates are set by York Electric’s Board of Directors and are subject to change.

What fuel sources will be used to generate my power?

York Electric Cooperative purchases power for our member-owners from Santee Cooper. The Power Content Label shows the resource mix projected for this year from Santee Cooper.

What length of agreement/contract is required?

The Green Power Program is voluntary. You can cancel or change your participation in Green Power at anytime. There is no contract length.

Where does the electricity for the Green Power Program come from?

There are currently 6 landfill methane gas facilities in South Carolina at Horry Solid Waste Authority, Lee County Landfill SC, LLC, Richland County Landfill, Anderson Regional Landfill SC, LLC, Georgetown County Landfill and Berkeley County Landfill. The landfills have a combined total installed capacity of 30 MW. Also, there are 3 Green Power Solar demonstration projects in the state at Grand Strand Solar Station in Myrtle Beach, SC, Coastal Carolina University in Conway, SC, and The Technical College of the Lowcountry in Bluffton, SC. With 20 school-based, solar power sites throughout the state, we’re doing more to than spearheading the effort to convert sunlight into clean, pollution-free electricity for all of our customers. We’re educating tomorrow’s leaders about the opportunities and limitations of solar power. We are also exploring applications for smaller wind turbines on shore, and in November 2010 Santee Cooper made history as the first utility to install a wind turbine and connect it to the grid. The 2.4 kW Skystream wind turbine is located oceanfront in North Myrtle Beach.

How does the Green Power help improve the environment?

South Carolina’s Green Power plant collects methane gas that would normally be released into the atmosphere – gases that possibly contribute to global warming – will be used as “green power” fuel.

Renewable resources produce little or no air pollution or waste. Better yet, some of them actually reduce air pollution and benefit the environment.

Annual Meeting FAQ

What is the Annual Meeting and why should I attend?

The Annual Meeting is a meeting of YEC’s members and a special occasion for members to participate in cooperative business and meet their cooperative leaders and employees. It’s a family affair with a festival atmosphere; the event flourishes with a wide array of activities. Music will fill the air as children explore their way through an inflatable obstacle course and race down a 22 foot dual slide. The aroma of popcorn will entice you to visit the participating food vendors to see what food options they have for you to purchase. Each member who is present and registers receives a registration gift and will be eligible to win door prizes. Most importantly, members can exercise their cooperative right to vote in the election for seats on the cooperative’s Board of Trustees. During the business meeting, the President and CEO will inform members of current events and share important information pertaining to the cooperative. YEC’s bylaws require an Annual Meeting to be held.

When is the Annual Meeting held and how will I be notified?

The Annual Meeting is Saturday, May 10, 2014. Members receive a registration postcard in the mail the last week in April. Members are also notified through the South Carolina Living magazine.

Where and what time is the meeting held?

The meeting is held at YEC’s main office. The address is 1385 East Alexander Love Highway in York, SC. Registration and voting begins at 8:30 a.m. and concludes at noon. The business meeting begins at noon and ends at approximately 12:45 p.m, Saturday, May 10, 2014.

What is the registration gift for 2014?

The 2014 registration gift is a $15 power bill credit. The registration gift is offered as an incentive to encourage members to attend the 2014 Annual Meeting; therefore, the registration gift is ONLY available to those members who are present. This applies to members who have health related illnesses or emergency situations. Members who attend are not allowed to register their friends and neighbors by bringing their registration cards.

Can I receive the registration gift if I can’t come?

The registration gift is offered as an incentive to encourage members to attend the Annual Meeting; therefore, the registration gift is ONLY available to those members who are present. This applies to members who have health related illnesses or emergency situations. Members who attend are not allowed to register their friends and neighbors by bringing their registration cards. The registration gift for 2014 will be announced.

How do I register and vote?

In order to register and vote, you must bring a valid photo ID. It is also important for you to bring your registration postcard because it has a barcode, with information pertaining to your YEC membership, printed on it. The barcode is scanned and this process minimizes the wait in the registration lines. If you do not bring your postcard, your membership information will have to be verified on the computer and a registration postcard will be prepared for you. Once your postcard is scanned you are registered. You will then be able to vote at one of the voting stations. The Credentials and Election Committee will oversee the registration and election process. If you have any questions about the voting process, please ask one of the Committee members.

Who are the candidates running for the 2014 Board of Trustees election?

The candidates running for the Board will be published in April’s issue of the South Carolina Living magazine.

How do I enter the door prize drawing?

Once you are registered you are automatically eligible to win a door prize. Your door prize tickets are attached to your registration postcard and will be removed during the registration process. At the end of the registration and voting line, you will drop one of your door prize tickets into the prize collection box. You will keep the other portion so you will be able to know whether or not you are a winner when the door prize ticket numbers are called.

When are the door prizes given away?

All prizes will be given away directly after the business meeting. The approximate time is 12:45 p.m.

Will the Annual Meeting be held if it rains?

The Annual Meeting will be held rain or shine. If there is a threat of a major storm, a decision will be made the Friday before the meeting. If it is necessary to cancel the Annual Meeting, an announcement will be made and a message will be posted to the homepage of our website.

What do I need to do if I am handicapped?

Please make sure your handicapped placard is visible from your automobile. You will be directed to the handicapped parking area and a shuttle will pick you up and take you to the registration lines.

What activities will be available for children?

Every child 12 years old and under who registers will receive a gift. They will be able to explore the inflatable obstacle course and race down a 22 foot dual slide. Cotton candy, snow cones, candy apples, popcorn, etc. will be available for purchase through TC’s Shaved Ice. At noon, during the business meeting, a safety demonstration will be held.

How can I make sure I get to purchase 25-cent hot dogs this year? Last year they sold out.

A total of 8,000 hot dogs will be prepared. YEC encourages members to purchase hot dogs early. Your cooperative plans for the hot dogs to be sold out every year so there is no waste.

Automated Meter Reading FAQ

What does AMI mean?

YEC has been using AMR, automated meter reading, for many years. AMR allows electric systems to read meters from a remote location. AMI goes a step beyond remote meter reading because it allows two-way communication between the meter and the electric system.

How much will the installation of the AMI meter cost members?

The installation of the new meters will be at no cost to the member. Should we determine the meter base or service equipment is dangerous or faulty during change-out, the member will be notified and asked to call an electrician to make repairs before the new meter will be installed.

Why is York Electric making this change?

The AMI system has numerous member benefits in a variety of areas and will help prepare us for the electric power industry’s fast-paced technological advancement.

What are some of the specific benefits of AMI?

  • Improves outage notification and management process.
  •  Provides additional metering data to better assist members with billing and service questions.
  •  Gives York Electric the capability to provide members with valuable usage information such as consumption patterns, outage and blink count history and voltage information.
  •  Improves meter reading accuracy and provides consistent billing periods. With an AMI system, meters can be automatically set to read on the same day of each month.
  •  Reduces losses by identifying power theft and other problems.

Who will be changing out the meters?

YEC personnel will change out the meters. They will knock on the door of each residence to introduce themselves and inform the residents of the meter change and short service interruption. If the member isn’t home, a door hanger will be left informing the member of the meter change-out.

Will service be interrupted during the meter change-out?

Yes, you will experience a short, normally less than 5-minute disruption of power during the meter change.

How does the new meter work?

The meters receive and store the kilowatt-hour and demand consumption, then transmits this and other data over the power lines to equipment located in one of York Electric’s substations. From the substation, the information is sent to a computer at our headquarters.

What specific information will the new meter provide?

It will record kWh readings, the number of times loss of power has occurred, reverse power flow caused by meter tampering, and the peak usage. It will also record the date and time of power outages.

Will AMI make it easier to detect meter tampering?

Yes, and that’s good news for all York Electric’s members since meter tampering costs thousands of dollars in revenue each year.

Once the AMI system is used to read the meter, can I close in or build anything that may make the meter inaccessible?

No. York Electric requires members to provide and maintain reasonable access to the electric meter. This allows members or co-op personnel to either read or maintain the meter if necessary.

Can anyone other than York Electric read my AMI meter?

No. The AMI computer software is specifically written for York Electric. The substation’s communications equipment is set up by the meter model and serial number. Each meter is added to the system by its serial number and substation location. All other information and data is stored in the meter itself and is secured and sealed.

I have a York Electric lock on my gate; what will happen to it now?

Nothing. YEC still needs access to your property for routine maintenance or emergency repairs.

Will the AMI meter automatically notify York Electric when my power goes out?

No, the AMI meters operate on a polling basis and do not immediately notify the co-op when an outage occurs. When you have an outage or emergency situation, you are encouraged to call us. The AMI meter will help us verify the problem. Call 1-866-374-1234 to report an outage.

What do I do if I think my meter is not working properly?

Contact a Member Services Representative at York Electric by calling 803-684-4248 right away to discuss any billing concerns. The AMI meters have been tested and conform to all applicable standards and regulations.

When did this AMI process begin?

York Electric began installing AMI meters in test areas in January 2011.

Billing & Payments FAQ

What payment options are available to me?

You may select one of the following options to make your monthly electric bill payment:

  1. Pay directly at our main office in York or at our Fort Mill branch.
  2. Comporium Communications*– located at 739 Galleria Boulevard, Rock Hill, SC Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM until 8:00 PM, and from 10:00 AM until 8:00 PM on Saturday. Map
    *Please note: This is the ONLY Comporium location that accepts YEC payments.
  3. Walmart– you may now pay your bill at any Walmart across the country.
    • Bring your current YEC bill or bill stub to the customer service counter and pay with cash or a PIN-based debit card.
    • To allow adequate time for processing, please check the disconnect date located on your YEC bill. Make sure you pay your bill at least 5 days prior to the disconnect notice. Otherwise, YEC cannot guarantee your service will not be disconnected. Standard 3 business day option is $0.88. Next business day option is $1.88.
    • Please retain the receipt that is provided to you for your records.
    • For payment verification, call (803) 684-4248 and provide the member services representative with the10-digit code printed at the bottom of your Walmart cash payment receipt. Find a Walmart store near you
  4. Bank Draft – The account must be paid in full to begin Bank Draft. You will need to send in a voided check, and a bank draft form needs to be completed and signed to authorize that YEC can draft money from your account. YEC will automatically draft your checking account in the amount of your electric bill, and you will receive your monthly statements showing the amount to be drafted.
  5. Telelink – pay your bill at your convenience, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by dialing 1-866-374-1234. You must have your YEC account number available to make your payment. Fees Apply. Most major credit cards are accepted.
  6. E-check – allows you to pay your bill by entering in your checking account and bank routing numbers through York Electric’s website.

What is Levelized billing and how do I sign up?

Each monthly bill is the rolling average of your electric usage for the most recent 12 months. In order to have your account placed on a levelized budget billing, you need to be a member of YEC at your current residence for one year, have maintained good credit (as defined by YEC), have a zero balance, and pay your bill by the original due date each month. There is no service charge or monthly fee, so call us if you want to level it out!

What is third party notification?

This free service allows you to select a designated person that we can contact when your account goes past due. A person may request to be a designated third-party, but must have the account holder’s permission. Both the member and this person will be notified by phone or mail that the bill is past due. You can sign up to receive this service by filling out the form and returning it to our office. You may also contact member services at 803-684-4248.

What is e-bill notification?

By signing up for e-billing, you will no longer receive a paper bill. You will have your bill sent to your email address so you can view it and pay it online.

What is invoice billing?

This option allows you to combine your accounts that are on the same billing cycle, on one bill. This feature is great for accounts with multiple meters on more than one cycle such as school districts or apartment buildings.

Are there any options available to me if I need assistance paying my bill?

If a situation should occur in which you are unable to pay all or a portion of your bill, please notify member services at 803-684-4248 as soon as possible. They may be able to set up a payment arrangement to allow you more time. They may also be able to provide you with a list of help agencies that can offer additional assistance. As a not for profit, cooperative members are expected to pay the costs which they incur. We cannot disregard payments owed to an account.

Capital Credits FAQ

As members of YEC, do we build equity in the co-op, and if we leave the area do we get a payout?

Capital Credits are a benefit of membership in a member-owned utility. Each year, YEC uses the revenues that exceed operating costs as equity. These funds and borrowed capital allow YEC to serve a growing number of members while implementing the latest technology to provide the best possible service. As a not-for-profit utility, YEC later returns these revenues to the members who originally paid them in his/her electric bills.

Each year, our members receive Capital Credit checks. For example, in May 2013, YEC will retire $800,000 in Capital Credits to people who were members in 1989, 1990 and 2011. Members will receive Capital Credit checks in the mail unless the amount due to them is less than $15. If the member’s refund is less than $15, the amount will be distributed and printed on their utility billing statement as a line item credit. The amount of Capital Credits returned is determined by total revenues received over expenses for the cooperative and your total energy billings for the year. They are paid periodically with board approval after review of YEC’s financial status.

If you leave YEC’s service area, your Capital Credits remain in your name and member number until they are retired. Therefore, you need to make sure YEC has your current mailing address.

What are Capital Credits?

York Electric is a cooperative. A cooperative is owned by its members and does not technically earn profits. Instead, any revenues over the cost of doing business are considered “margins”. These margins represent an interest free loan of operating capital by the membership of the cooperative. This capital allows York Electric to finance operations and, to a certain extent, construction. The utility then returns this capital to the members in later years.

How often will I receive an allocation notice?

You should receive an allocation notice each year after a financial audit of York Electric has been completed. During the month of May, members receive Capital Credit checks in the mail unless the amount due to them is less than $15. If the member’s refund is less than $15, the amount will be distributed and printed on their utility billing statement as a line item credit.

What do I have to do to start accumulating Capital Credits?

Capital Credits are calculated by York Electric for every member who purchased electricity during a year in which the utility earned margins. No special action is required to start a Capital Credit account. Your membership with York Electric activates your Capital Credit account.

How are Capital Credits calculated?

The amount of Capital Credits you earn in a given year is based upon the amount of electricity purchased. Each member receives a credit based on a percentage for each dollar of electricity purchased.

Will I receive a Capital Credits check every year?

Not necessarily. The board of trustees must authorize a refund before you receive a check. When considering a refund, the board analyzes the financial status of the cooperative and will not authorize a refund if it is not in the best interest of the membership.

Can I use the Capital Credits I have allocated to pay my electric bill?

No. Allocated Capital Credits may not be used to pay current bills. While your electric bill is due monthly, you will not be entitled to your Capital Credits until the board of trustees authorizes a refund. This will take place over many years, since York Electric needs the funds to grow.

What happens to the Capital Credits of members who die?

The representative of the estate can have the balance of Capital Credits transferred into the heir’s name and the balance will be paid out as the board of trustees approves refunds.

What happens to my Capital Credits when I leave York Electric’s service area?

Your Capital Credits remain in your name and member number until they are retired. You just need to ensure that York Electric has your current mailing address.

Co-op Connections Card FAQ

How much will I save?

The discounts save you 10% to 60% on prescriptions at over 56,000 pharmacies nationwide, including CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, Target and more.

How much does the feature cost?

Your pharmacy discounts are provided as part of your Co-op Connections® program at no cost.

Does everyone in my family need an individual card?

No. One card may be used by the entire family.

I just received my card. Can I use it right away?

Yes. Just present your card and prescription at a participating retail pharmacy to receive a discount at the time of purchase.

How are these pharmacy discounts different from traditional prescription insurance?

This plan is not insurance; it is a pharmacy discount offer. The card provides immediate discounts at the pharmacy. Upon presenting your card to the pharmacist, you will pay the lower of a discounted price or the pharmacy’s regular retail price. There are no forms to fill out and no limit to the number of times you can use the card. These discounts are available only at participating retail pharmacies.

Can I use my Co-op Connections card with my current insurance benefit to reduce my costs?

Your card cannot be used in conjunction with insurance. However, use your card to purchase prescriptions not covered by your insurance plans at a discounted rate.

Where can I get a list of pharmacies that accept the card?

The Co-op Connections card is accepted at over 60,000 retail pharmacies nationwide, including CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, Target ant more. You can find participating pharmacy locations at: www.locateproviders.com.

Will I always receive the lowest price?

Yes. You will receive the best price available to you through this program at the pharmacy. On occasion, pharmacies will price a particular medication lower than the discount rate provided by the card. If that occurs, you will receive the lower price.

Can I find out the discounted price of my prescriptions before going to the pharmacy?

Yes, if you know the name, strength and quantity of the medication, you can find the discounted price of the medication by visiting: www.rxpricequotes.com.

Why did the price of my prescription change since my last purchase?

Drug prices are different from pharmacy to pharmacy. Even chains have different prices in their stores depending on the population they are servicing. Additionally, manufacturers’ drug prices change periodically.

What is the mail order program?

To ensure members always save money on their prescription drugs, a unique mail order program was created to complement the network pharmacy benefit. Since most maintenance (long term) medications are purchased in 90 day supplies, members maximize savings and have the convenience of home delivery (at no additional charge) by ordering through the mail order option.

What is the Touchstone Energy Co-op Connections card?

The card is a free benefit of your membership in York Electric. Products and service discounts are offered by participating businesses. There are more than 100 local and regional deals and thousands of discounts offered online and nationwide. You can also use your card to save on prescriptions and receive coupons. You can see all the deals at www.connections.coop.

If I misplace my Co-op Connections card, can I get another one?

Yes. Just drop by any York Electric office and they will be happy to give you a free replacement card and key fob with a photo ID.

Are coupons available for Co-op Connections cardholders?

Yes, there are hundreds of free coupons available to Co-op Connections cardholders. Visit www.connection.coop.

Can I use my Co-op Connections card to receive pharmacy discounts?

Yes. Your pharmacy discounts are provided as part of your Co-op Connections Program at no cost. The discounts save you 10% to 60% on prescriptions at over 60,000 pharmacies nationwide, including CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, Target and more.

How do I locate participating pharmacies in my area?

Find a pharmacy near you by calling Member Services at 800-800-7616 or visiting www.locateproviders.com. Use code ’22203′ as the group number under the “Groups” login section. Next enter your zip code and the recommended mile radius of 100 to search for providers near you.

Electric Vehicles FAQ

Why is York Electric interested in Electric Vehicles?

1) It saves customers money – Filling up an electric vehicle is cheaper than fueling a traditional car.

2) The environment will benefit – Widespread adoption of electric vehicles will cut emissions.

3) Energy Independence – Electric vehicles reduce our dependence on foreign oil and will lead to more local jobs.

Where is the nearest charger to your office?

On site at our main headquarters. Address: 1385 East Alexander Love Highway, York, SC

When will the additional purchase price be justifiable for the average vehicle buyer?

A lot can change in a year, but based on current fuel prices, probably 4 years (2017). There are more models becoming available in 2013 and as battery prices improve, the timeframe could shorten.

What is York Electric doing to study electric vehicles for its members?

1) In 2007 we began collecting data;

2)  We have been corroborating with Duke on their plans and data collection; Duke energy currently has one of the nation’s largest fleets of plug-in electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric cars for research and development purposes. This includes vehicles from Toyota, Tesla, Ford, General Motors, Chrysler, Nissan and the Southeast’s first plug-in hybrid electric utility “bucket” truck.

3) We are developing an overall electric vehicle plan for 2013 to include beta sites for in- home chargers and special electric rates to incentivize vehicle charging on non-peak times;

4) We are sharing more information with our members about where this technology is going.

Energy Use FAQ

Do you have a service that would allow someone to come to a member’s home and give a review of the home and offer advice on how to make the home more efficient and show them how to reduce their bill?

Yes. York Electric offers a free in-home energy audit. All you have to do is call our member services department at 803-684-4248 and tell them you are interesting in scheduling one.

What is the best temperature for heating and cooling?

The ideal setting is 78 degrees for cooling and 65 degrees for heating.

My house is energy efficient. Does York Electric offer a lower rate?

Yes. In order to qualify for York Electric’s Residential All Electric rate, you must have an all electric home and be an individually-metered residential member living in a residence, mobile home, condominium or apartment that meets certain energy efficiency requirements. These requirements apply to heat pumps, water heaters and other factors that affect the energy efficiency of your home. To find out more about qualifying for this special rate, please contact our member services department at 803-684-4248.

Someone said outdoor floodlights were making my bill run higher? Is this possible?

Yes, it can. You can save by using your current spotlights less, converting your current spotlights to 23 watt compact fluorescent spots, and by installing motion sensors so the lights only work when motion is detected.

What can I do about the amount of my bill?

Conserving energy is always a good idea. York Electric has a free 101 low-cost/no-cost home energy savings measures brochure. Visit one of our offices to pick up a copy or download here. Also, visit TogetherWeSave.com and take the home tour to learn what actions you can take to save on your energy bill.

Is electricity still a good value?

The value of electricity remains very high. The national cost of electricity today, when adjusted for inflation, is less than what it was in 1980. Very few commodities have remained such a good value. Compared to other consumer products and services, electricity is a bargain.

Fort Mill Solar Panels

What type of solar panels are they and where were they made?

They are Sharp panels and were made in Memphis, Tennessee.

How much does 8Kw generate?

Approximately 50KWH per day (on good days). On a good day, the solar panels will be able to supply the Fort Mill office and also put extra on the grid. YEC is putting all the electricity generated back on the grid instead of tying it back to the office. The panels have the potential to generate approximately half of the office’s use for a year.

How much did the project cost?

The projected cost, which Santee Cooper is providing with monies generated from Green Power, is $35,449.

Will members be able to view the output of the solar panels?

Yes. It will be connected to an internet monitoring service so YEC’s internet will be able to display the output on a monitor in the lobbies of both offices and on its website. Santee Cooper will also display a link on its website.

General FAQ

I heard York Electric gives money to replace trees. Is this true?

York Electric’s Trade a Tree Program helps members replace trees that must be removed by the co-op to ensure service reliability. York Electric’s employees involved in the co-op’s right-of-way maintenance effort will visit members’ homes to determine if trees near co-op lines need to be removed. If so, they may issue a coupon. The member will redeem the coupon at one of the participating nurseries: Lee’s Nursery and Penland Tree Farm. For more information about this program, call (803) 684-4248 and speak to one of our member service representatives.

What should I do if it appears that a tree in my yard might fall on a power line?

Immediately call York Electric’s member services department at (803) 684-4248. We will send someone out to evaluate the situation. Never try to trim trees near power lines!

What is a dual-fuel heat pump and does York Electric offer an incentive to purchase one?

A dual-fuel heat pump is an electric heat pump and a gas furnace all in one. In South Carolina, where temperatures are typically above freezing a heat pump is the most efficient way to heat your home. In those few instances when the temperature drops below freezing, a gas furnace provides heat more economically. By combining the two, you can have the benefits of both systems. Yes, a $200 rebate per system is available for installation of dual-fuel heat pumps. Rebates are subject to approval and the incentive is for the property owner only. For more information, please contact our member services department at (803) 684-4248.

How do I report a burned out security light?

If you notice that an outdoor security light installed by York Electric appears to be out or functioning improperly, please notify us immediately by using our online Security Light Outage report form or by calling our member services department at (803)684-4248.

I want to change my overhead lines to underground. Is this possible and how much does it cost?

Yes. Overhead lines can be changed to underground for a fee at the request of the member. In order to determine how much it will cost, one of our engineers will need to come to your property to evaluate the situation. Please contact our member services department at (803) 684-4248 to schedule an appointment.

Does YEC offer any scholarships to high school seniors?

York Electric Cooperative awards ten $1,000 scholarships to high school seniors each May. You do have to be a member of YEC to compete for this scholarship. Students must have average or above average grades and submit an essay. The downloadable application is available here. Applications can also be picked-up at high school guidance offices.

What is the Wholesale Power Cost Adjustment (WPCA)?

The WPCA is used to “adjust” the amount charged to members when the price of fuels to generate electricity spike and fall over time. Fuel cost adjustments can be additions or subtractions depending upon how much York Electric’s wholesale power provider had to pay for generation fuels. It is not a fee to pay for fuel for York Electric’s vehicles.

Green Power FAQ

What is Green Power?

Green Power is electricity generated by renewable resources like the sun and methane gas that is found in landfills. These resources are replenished naturally. Green Power is generated by Santee Cooper and distributed by electric cooperatives across the state.

Why does York Electric offer Green Power?

Green Power provides you a direct opportunity to help our environment by supporting electricity generated from renewable power sources. By voluntarily participating in the Green Power program, you and York Electric are proving your commitment to community by helping improve the environment.

Where does my money go?

All revenue from the sale of Green Power is reinvested in future development of renewable energy resources such as solar energy, and educational projects such as Solar Schools.

How will I know that this Green Power is actually being run into my home?

The renewable energy that you will be purchasing is not directly routed to your home, but by subscribing you are helping to support the purchase of additional clean energy and encouraging more investment statewide in environmentally friendly ways to generate power. For every environmentally friendly kilowatt hour purchased by cooperative members, one less kilowatt hour is being purchased from other less environmentally friendly sources such as coal-based energy.

Does Green Power really make a difference?

By trapping methane gas and turning it into useful energy, your electric cooperative is helping to rid the environment of a dangerous greenhouse gas. Fortunately, as fuel, the gas is a renewable energy and has no waste. What’s more, for just 2 dimes a day Green Power has the environmental impact of not driving a car for almost 3 months or planting over 1/3 acre of trees for a year.

Whom should I contact for more information?

Member Services Department: 803-684-4248
Email
York Electric Cooperative, Inc.
P.O. Box 150, York, SC 29745
Drop by: Any local member services office

How much does Green Power cost?

Each 100 kilowatt-hour block will add a mere $3 to your monthly electric bill. One block (100 kWh) is approximately 10 percent of a typical household’s monthly energy use. There is no equipment to buy, and you won’t have to change your lifestyle one bit. You can sign up for as many blocks as you like, knowing that you are doing your part in helping the environment and making renewable resources and facilities a reality.

How will my electricity bill be calculated?

Usage rate: Your residential rate plus $3 for each 100kWh block of Green Power.

Taxes and Fees: You must also pay all applicable federal, state, and local taxes as well as any applicable fees.

  • $86.50 2004 monthly electricity cost
  • $ 3.00 Green Power premium
  • $89.50 Total

How will I be billed?

Your Green Power charge will be listed on your monthly electric bill as an additional line item.

Will my electricity rates change over time?

Rates are set by York Electric’s Board of Directors and are subject to change.

What fuel sources will be used to generate my power?

York Electric Cooperative purchases power for our member-owners from Santee Cooper. The Power Content Label shows the resource mix projected for this year from Santee Cooper.

What length of agreement/contract is required?

The Green Power Program is voluntary. You can cancel or change your participation in Green Power at anytime. There is no contract length.

Where does the electricity for the Green Power Program come from?

There are currently 6 landfill methane gas facilities in South Carolina at Horry Solid Waste Authority, Lee County Landfill SC, LLC, Richland County Landfill, Anderson Regional Landfill SC, LLC, Georgetown County Landfill and Berkeley County Landfill. The landfills have a combined total installed capacity of 30 MW. Also, there are 3 Green Power Solar demonstration projects in the state at Grand Strand Solar Station in Myrtle Beach, SC, Coastal Carolina University in Conway, SC, and The Technical College of the Lowcountry in Bluffton, SC. With 20 school-based, solar power sites throughout the state, we’re doing more to than spearheading the effort to convert sunlight into clean, pollution-free electricity for all of our customers. We’re educating tomorrow’s leaders about the opportunities and limitations of solar power. We are also exploring applications for smaller wind turbines on shore, and in November 2010 Santee Cooper made history as the first utility to install a wind turbine and connect it to the grid. The 2.4 kW Skystream wind turbine is located oceanfront in North Myrtle Beach.

How does the Green Power help improve the environment?

South Carolina’s Green Power plant collects methane gas that would normally be released into the atmosphere – gases that possibly contribute to global warming – will be used as “green power” fuel.

Renewable resources produce little or no air pollution or waste. Better yet, some of them actually reduce air pollution and benefit the environment.

Keeping Food Safe during an Emergency

Flood waters covered our food stored on shelves and in cabinets. What can I keep and what should I throw out? How should I clean my dishes and pots and pans?

Discard all food that came in contact with flood waters including canned goods. It is impossible to know if containers were damaged and the seal compromised. Discard wooden cutting boards, plastic utensils, baby bottle nipples, and pacifiers. There is no way to safely clean them if they have come in contact with contaminated flood waters. Thoroughly wash metal pans, ceramic dishes, and utensils with hot soapy water and sanitize by boiling them in clean water or by immersing them for 15 minutes in a solution of 1 teaspoon of chlorine bleach per quart of water.

My home was flooded and I am worried about the safety of the drinking water. What should I do?

Drink only approved or chlorinated water. Consider all water from wells, cisterns, and other delivery systems in the disaster area unsafe until tested. Purchase bottled water, if necessary, until you are certain that your water supply is safe. Keep a 3-day supply of water or a minimum of 3 gallons of water per person.

We had a fire in our home and I am worried about what food I can keep and what to throw away.

Discard food that has been near a fire. Food exposed to fire can be damaged by the heat of the fire, smoke fumes, and chemicals used to fight the fire .

Food in cans or jars may appear to be okay, but the heat from a fire can activate food spoilage bacteria. If the heat is extreme, the cans or jars themselves can split or rupture, rendering the food unsafe.

One of the most dangerous elements of a fire is sometimes not the fire itself, but toxic fumes released from burning materials. Discard any raw food or food in permeable packaging—cardboard, plastic wrap, screw-topped jars, bottles, etc.—stored outside the refrigerator. Food stored in refrigerators or freezers can also become contaminated by fumes. The refrigerator seal isn’t airtight and fumes can get inside.

Chemicals used to fight the fire contain toxic materials and can contaminate food and cookware. Food that is exposed to chemicals should be thrown away—the chemicals cannot be washed off the food. This includes food stored at room temperature, such as fruits and vegetables, as well as food stored in permeable containers like cardboard and screw-topped jars and bottles. Cookware exposed to fire-fighting chemicals can be decontaminated by washing in soap and hot water. Then submerge for 15 minutes in a solution of 1 teaspoon chlorine bleach per quart of water.

A snowstorm knocked down the power lines, can I put the food from the refrigerator and freezer out in the snow?

No, frozen food can thaw if it is exposed to the sun’s rays even when the temperature is very cold. Refrigerated food may become too warm and foodborne bacteria could grow. The outside temperature could vary hour by hour and the temperature outside will not protect refrigerated and frozen food. Additionally, perishable items could be exposed to unsanitary conditions or to animals. Animals may harbor bacteria or disease; never consume food that has come in contact with an animal.

Rather than putting the food outside, consider taking advantage of the cold temperatures by making ice. Fill buckets, empty milk cartons or cans with water and leave them outside to freeze. Then put the homemade ice in your refrigerator, freezer, or coolers.

Some of my food in the freezer started to thaw or had thawed when the power came back on. Is the food safe? How long will the food in the refrigerator be safe with the power off?

Never taste food to determine its safety! You will have to evaluate each item separately. If an appliance thermometer was kept in the freezer, read the temperature when the power comes back on. If the appliance thermometer stored in the freezer reads 40 °F or below, the food is safe and may be refrozen. If a thermometer has not been kept in the freezer, check each package of food to determine the safety. Remember you can’t rely on appearance or odor. If the food still contains ice crystals or is 40 °F or below, it is safe to refreeze.

Refrigerated food should be safe as long as power is out no more than 4 hours. Keep the door closed as much as possible. Discard any perishable food (such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and leftovers) that have been above 40 °F for 2 hours.

May I refreeze the food in the freezer if it thawed or partially thawed?

Yes, the food may be safely refrozen if the food still contains ice crystals or is at 40 °F or below. You will have to evaluate each item separately. Be sure to discard any items in either the freezer or the refrigerator that have come into contact with raw meat juices. Partial thawing and refreezing may reduce the quality of some food, but the food will remain safe to eat. See the attached charts for specific recommendations.

Mobile Web App FAQ

How current is the account information I see in the Mobile App?

The information you see in the Mobile App is shown in real-time, so it’s always accurate. However, if you keep your Mobile App open for an extended period of time, you should refresh the page by selecting a new option in order to ensure the information is still current.

How do I view my bill through the Mobile App?

Our App will display PDF versions of your available bills using the PDF reader you have on your smart device. We support and recommend the Adobe PDF reader for the best results on Android devices. On Android devices, if you do not have the Adobe PDF reader already installed, our App will prompt you to install it from the Android Market to ensure you are able to display and view your PDF bills correctly.

How do I sign up for push notifications? What if I want to receive push notifications for multiple accounts?

The first time you launch the App after installing it on your mobile device, you’ll be asked whether or not you want to enable push notifications for our App on your device. Select OK to enable push notifications. Next, be sure to select each individual account and enable the “Notify” option for every account you want to receive push notifications on this specific device.

If you have our App installed on multiple devices, don’t forget to enable push notifications for your accounts on each device, as the push notification settings for each account are device-specific.

How do I find your offices and payment locations? Do I have to log in first?

You do not have to log in to view addresses or maps to our office locations or even to get our contact information. Simply open the App and use the “Locations” link at the bottom of the login screen.

Do I have to buy the Mobile App?

No. Our Mobile App is completely free to download and install.

How do I get the Mobile App for my phone?

Simply look for our name in the App Store or in the Android Market. In the Android Market, if you can’t find our App, that likely means your phone is not supported.

Our Mobile Apps are supported on the following platforms:

  • iOS 4.3 to 5.0.1 (iPhone, iPod touch, and/or iPad)
  • Android 2.2 to 4.0.4

What features does the Mobile App have?

The Mobile App gives you the ability to view your accounts, view your bills, make secure payments directly from your mobile device, view your payment history, modify or maintain your subscriptions for alerts and reminders, and contact us via email or phone.

Once you’ve installed a Mobile App on your phone, you’ll also have the ability to receive push notifications and view a map of our offices and payment locations.

Is the Mobile App secure?

Yes! All critical information is encrypted in every transaction run through the Apps, and no personal information is stored on your mobile device. However, mobile devices do offer you the ability to store your login information for apps installed on the device. If you choose to store your login information, any person who has access to your mobile device can access your account.

Is my phone supported?

Our Mobile Apps are supported on the following platforms:

  • iOS 4.3 to 5.0.1 (iPhone, iPod touch, and/or iPad)
  • Android 2.2 to 4.0.4

What is the difference between the Mobile Apps and a Mobile Web App?

Our Mobile Apps are native Apps that can be downloaded and installed on your compatible mobile device, while a Mobile Web App is a web portal that runs directly in the mobile browser on your smart phone or other mobile device. The native Apps give you secure access to maintain your account information, to view your bills and your payment history, to manage your alerts and reminders, and to make payments on one or more accounts directly from your mobile device.

The native Apps also allow you to register your accounts to receive push notifications for account milestones, such as an approaching or a missed due date. Push notifications are not available through a Mobile Web App.

I have five accounts. Can I see them all in the Mobile App?

Yes. Once you’ve logged in, you’ll be directed to a list of all of your accounts. To see the details for a specific account, simply select that account and the details will display above the list of accounts.

If you only have one account, the details for that account will show up as soon as you log in.

Can I make a payment on multiple accounts?

Yes. From the list of accounts, either select the option to pay all accounts, or select specific accounts for your payment. You can also make a payment to a single account by selecting the payment option when that specific account’s details are displayed.

New Service FAQ

What does it cost to establish an account with YEC?

Members of YEC are required to pay a one-time non-refundable membership fee of $5 and a service fee of $20. A security deposit of $225 may be required, depending on the applicant’s credit history, for residential service.

Can the deposit be waived?

Residential Accounts – If no credit history with YEC exists, the cooperative will charge the $225 deposit. However, there is a way to waive the deposit for residential service. YEC verifies the identity of new members through Online Utility Exchange; this process also generates a credit check. If the identity check meets YEC standards, then the deposit may be waived.

Commercial Accounts – Deposits must be paid on commercial accounts. Credit checks are not accepted for commercial accounts. Contractors building several homes are allowed to have one deposit for several accounts, provided these accounts are kept current.

When will my security deposit be returned?

Residential Accounts – Residential deposits are refunded, if an excellent payment history (as defined by YEC) is maintained, for 12 consecutive months. The deposit is automatically credited to the bill, when the member meets the above mentioned qualifications, or it is applied towards the final bill. If there is any remaining deposit owed to the member, a check will be mailed; therefore, it is important for YEC to have your forwarding address.

Commercial Accounts – The deposit is applied to the final bill.

How long does it take to get power to a new home and what is required?

It depends on the circumstance; therefore, YEC does not promise construction completion dates. If line construction is necessary, YEC requires a minimum notice of 10 working days. In order to begin service the following is required: county permit, service order request, meter base installed, signed underground form and member application. Failure to provide these documents may delay the process. Connection for services, other than temporaries and agricultural uses, must have power authorization before YEC can set the meter. Other factors to consider when requesting service:

  •  Weather can cause delays in the construction process.
  •  Services in subdivisions do not take as long to connect because the primary service is already installed.
  •  A new home, that hasn’t had power before, may need to have right of way obtained or cleared. Also, poles may need to be set in order to get service to the home.

Can I have my overhead service changed to underground and how much will it cost?

New permanent residential services, including mobile homes, are not charged for secondary underground service. Underground service can be installed upon request for barns, wells, shops, storage buildings, and other non-permanent residences, but a charge will be incurred by the member. This charge is determined by YEC’s engineering department. Changing existing overhead service to underground will incur a higher charge. Underground service lines are more expensive to install than overhead services, but do not require as much maintenance.

Operation Round Up FAQ

Exactly what is this Operation Round Up and more importantly will I recoup the amount that was rounded up?

Operation Round Up is a voluntary contribution on your electric bill which adds a few pennies each month. The most you could ever donate in a year would be $12, but most members see their donations around $6.00 per year. These pennies are added together from all our participating members, and York Electric’s Trust Board makes grants to non-profit agencies who are serving needs in our community. Since 2000, York Electric’s members have raised approximately 1.5 million.

What do I do if I need help?

Contact local Help agencies. Download the Agency Help list PDF here »

How can I help?

We make it easy. Sign up by calling our member services department at 803-684-4248 and we’ll simply round your electric bill up to the next highest dollar each month. The extra change – an average of only 50 cents a month or $6 a year – is your contribution to the program. If you wish to discontinue your contributions at any time, simply contact YEC.

Are my contributions tax deductible?

Contributions to Operation Round Up are tax deductible. In January and February, your utility bill will have a summary of the contributions you made to Operation Round Up during the previous year.

How do I find out to whom the funds were distributed?

After each quarterly meeting, our website is updated with the current disposition statement. Also, we periodically publish updates about Operation Round Up in the South Carolina Living magazine.

Pharmacy Discount FAQ

How much will I save?

The discounts save you 10% to 60% on prescriptions at over 56,000 pharmacies nationwide, including CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, Target and more.

How much does the feature cost?

Your pharmacy discounts are provided as part of your Co-op Connections® program at no cost.

Does everyone in my family need an individual card?

No. One card may be used by the entire family.

I just received my card. Can I use it right away?

Yes. Just present your card and prescription at a participating retail pharmacy to receive a discount at the time of purchase.

How are these pharmacy discounts different from traditional prescription insurance?

This plan is not insurance; it is a pharmacy discount offer. The card provides immediate discounts at the pharmacy. Upon presenting your card to the pharmacist, you will pay the lower of a discounted price or the pharmacy’s regular retail price. There are no forms to fill out and no limit to the number of times you can use the card. These discounts are available only at participating retail pharmacies.

Can I use my Co-op Connections card with my current insurance benefit to reduce my costs?

Your card cannot be used in conjunction with insurance. However, use your card to purchase prescriptions not covered by your insurance plans at a discounted rate.

Where can I get a list of pharmacies that accept the card?

The Co-op Connections card is accepted at over 60,000 retail pharmacies nationwide, including CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, Target ant more. You can find participating pharmacy locations at: www.locateproviders.com.

Will I always receive the lowest price?

Yes. You will receive the best price available to you through this program at the pharmacy. On occasion, pharmacies will price a particular medication lower than the discount rate provided by the card. If that occurs, you will receive the lower price.

Can I find out the discounted price of my prescriptions before going to the pharmacy?

Yes, if you know the name, strength and quantity of the medication, you can find the discounted price of the medication by visiting: www.rxpricequotes.com.

Why did the price of my prescription change since my last purchase?

Drug prices are different from pharmacy to pharmacy. Even chains have different prices in their stores depending on the population they are servicing. Additionally, manufacturers’ drug prices change periodically.

What is the mail order program?

To ensure members always save money on their prescription drugs, a unique mail order program was created to complement the network pharmacy benefit. Since most maintenance (long term) medications are purchased in 90 day supplies, members maximize savings and have the convenience of home delivery (at no additional charge) by ordering through the mail order option.

Power Outage FAQ

What do I do if my power goes out?

Call 1-866-374-1234. York Electric encourages you to call our 24-hour ‘Power Touch’ outage reporting system so we can quickly locate where the problem is occurring and send crews out right away. Any detailed information you can supply about the outage is very beneficial in the trouble shooting process. Note: Before reporting the outage, YEC recommends that you first check your main breakers in your electrical panel.

Flood waters covered our food stored on shelves and in cabinets. What can I keep and what should I throw out? How should I clean my dishes and pots and pans?

Discard all food that came in contact with flood waters including canned goods. It is impossible to know if containers were damaged and the seal compromised. Discard wooden cutting boards, plastic utensils, baby bottle nipples, and pacifiers. There is no way to safely clean them if they have come in contact with contaminated flood waters. Thoroughly wash metal pans, ceramic dishes, and utensils with hot soapy water and sanitize by boiling them in clean water or by immersing them for 15 minutes in a solution of 1 teaspoon of chlorine bleach per quart of water.

My home was flooded and I am worried about the safety of the drinking water. What should I do?

Drink only approved or chlorinated water. Consider all water from wells, cisterns, and other delivery systems in the disaster area unsafe until tested. Purchase bottled water, if necessary, until you are certain that your water supply is safe. Keep a 3-day supply of water or a minimum of 3 gallons of water per person.

We had a fire in our home and I am worried about what food I can keep and what to throw away.

Discard food that has been near a fire. Food exposed to fire can be damaged by the heat of the fire, smoke fumes, and chemicals used to fight the fire .

Food in cans or jars may appear to be okay, but the heat from a fire can activate food spoilage bacteria. If the heat is extreme, the cans or jars themselves can split or rupture, rendering the food unsafe.

One of the most dangerous elements of a fire is sometimes not the fire itself, but toxic fumes released from burning materials. Discard any raw food or food in permeable packaging—cardboard, plastic wrap, screw-topped jars, bottles, etc.—stored outside the refrigerator. Food stored in refrigerators or freezers can also become contaminated by fumes. The refrigerator seal isn’t airtight and fumes can get inside.

Chemicals used to fight the fire contain toxic materials and can contaminate food and cookware. Food that is exposed to chemicals should be thrown away—the chemicals cannot be washed off the food. This includes food stored at room temperature, such as fruits and vegetables, as well as food stored in permeable containers like cardboard and screw-topped jars and bottles. Cookware exposed to fire-fighting chemicals can be decontaminated by washing in soap and hot water. Then submerge for 15 minutes in a solution of 1 teaspoon chlorine bleach per quart of water.

A snowstorm knocked down the power lines, can I put the food from the refrigerator and freezer out in the snow?

No, frozen food can thaw if it is exposed to the sun’s rays even when the temperature is very cold. Refrigerated food may become too warm and foodborne bacteria could grow. The outside temperature could vary hour by hour and the temperature outside will not protect refrigerated and frozen food. Additionally, perishable items could be exposed to unsanitary conditions or to animals. Animals may harbor bacteria or disease; never consume food that has come in contact with an animal.

Rather than putting the food outside, consider taking advantage of the cold temperatures by making ice. Fill buckets, empty milk cartons or cans with water and leave them outside to freeze. Then put the homemade ice in your refrigerator, freezer, or coolers.

Some of my food in the freezer started to thaw or had thawed when the power came back on. Is the food safe? How long will the food in the refrigerator be safe with the power off?

Never taste food to determine its safety! You will have to evaluate each item separately. If an appliance thermometer was kept in the freezer, read the temperature when the power comes back on. If the appliance thermometer stored in the freezer reads 40 °F or below, the food is safe and may be refrozen. If a thermometer has not been kept in the freezer, check each package of food to determine the safety. Remember you can’t rely on appearance or odor. If the food still contains ice crystals or is 40 °F or below, it is safe to refreeze.

Refrigerated food should be safe as long as power is out no more than 4 hours. Keep the door closed as much as possible. Discard any perishable food (such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and leftovers) that have been above 40 °F for 2 hours.

May I refreeze the food in the freezer if it thawed or partially thawed?

Yes, the food may be safely refrozen if the food still contains ice crystals or is at 40 °F or below. You will have to evaluate each item separately. Be sure to discard any items in either the freezer or the refrigerator that have come into contact with raw meat juices. Partial thawing and refreezing may reduce the quality of some food, but the food will remain safe to eat. See the attached charts for specific recommendations.

Why have my lights gone out, but my power still works?

Check for water saturation of your ceilings and light fittings inside and outside. If wet, call us immediately. If there is no obvious damage to your light fittings, turn off all but one light. Check the lighting circuit’s fuse or circuit breaker operation at your switchboard. Turn off your main switch and replace the fuse. Turn the main switch again. If the fuse blows, call YEC.

When I report an outage, why is it important for my correct phone number to be on file?

YEC uses an automatic phone answering system to handle power outage reports. If your correct phone number is on file with our office, your phone call can be handled more efficiently. Having the correct contact information also allows us to make any follow-up calls to you about electric service problems. If your phone number has changed since you signed up for your electric service, please contact our member services department at 803-684-4248.

When will the power be back on?

This depends on the amount of damage sustained and current conditions. Field personnel must complete a damage assessment before any reliable estimate can be made.

Why do my lights ‘blink’ from time to time?

Momentary outages occur when a disturbance on the line is detected. These disturbances could be caused by a lightning strike, a squirrel or tree branch contacting the line, or a downed line or outage in a nearby area, etc. If a fault or short circuit occurs on a power line, a device called a recloser opens to stop it and then quickly closes. This device allows power to continue flowing through the line with only a brief interruption of service rather than causing an extended power outage. Although the process is quick and usually temporary, it may cause your lights to blink. If the short circuit continues, the recloser will operate or ‘trip’ three times before eventually stopping the flow of electricity and causing a power outage. This process protects the lines from damage by cutting off power to the affected section of the line and isolating the problem until it can be repaired.

My electricity supply seems to fluctuate. What should I do?

If you notice unusual periodic variations in the normal brightness of your lights, sometimes very bright, sometimes dull, call us. These are symptoms of a potentially hazardous situation. Turn off all your motors and appliances, and leave a minimum of lights on.

Why is my neighbor’s electricity on but mine is off?

Some neighborhoods get electricity from several different circuits, so you may notice your lights are out, but your neighbors have power. In such cases, the problem could be originating from your house’s electric line, a particular tap line, a main feeder line, or at the substation. For us to determine where the problem originates, it is extremely important that you call 1-866-374-1234 and report the outage with your exact street address and correct phone number.

While my lights are on, they are dim. What is causing this?

This may be an incidence of partial power. At this point, members should unplug large/major appliances such as refrigerators, ovens, air conditioners, etc., as this could cause a power fluctuation and result in another outage. Once lights are bright, indicating full power has been restored, it is safe to plug in major appliances.

Is it possible that my electrical supply seems weaker than normal, and why?

Lights being dimmer than usual, hot plates slow to cook, and motors failing to start are all indicative that there might be a problem in the high voltage system. If you observe any of these in your home, turn appliances off and unplug them. Leave a minimum of lights on (such as a fluorescent) and call YEC.

Who gets their power restored first?

During times of multiple power outages, YEC concentrates our initial restoration efforts in the areas and on the power lines that restore electricity to the greatest number of people in the shortest period of time. We place emphasis on vital community services, emergency services and public safety. Please be patient, and we will restore your electric service as soon as we possibly can.

What was the loud noise I heard outside when my power went out?

Many people think that the loud noise they heard was the sound of a transformer exploding, due to lightning or other extreme conditions. This was probably not the case. The noise could have been a fuse blowing. YEC’s power lines use fuses in a similar manner to the way you use fuses in your home. These fuses protect parts of our distribution system when severe weather strikes. The noise can be substantial leading many people to think something has exploded. When reporting an outage, it is very helpful when you tell us you heard a loud noise because it helps us isolate the location of problems on our lines.

Why does my smoke detector alarm when the power goes off and comes back on?

Some smoke alarms are powered by AC (alternating current) and use a battery backup. When these units lose power momentarily they may chirp several times to inform you they are on backup power or are returning to main power. For more information, review the manufacturer’s documentation on your type of alarm.

How do I know if my appliances have been affected?

If you receive a tingling sensation from any electrical appliances turn off the electricity immediately. Do not make contact with or let anyone else near the suspected appliance and call YEC.

My power is out and I’m on life support. What should I do?

You should first refer to your disaster plan and call your home health nurse and physician. You should notify your family and/or friends and call EMS especially if your situation is life threatening. YEC reminds members who have extreme critical health needs that require a continuous power source during an outage, to make arrangements before the crisis to relocate to a place where those needs can be met. Another option is to make personal arrangements for a generator to hook up to machines that have to be kept running. Generators should never be hooked into a home or business’ electric circuit. Generators should only be connected directly to critical care machines or other appliances.

What should I do after I report my outage in a major storm?

In a major storm, assume you may be without power for some time. Turn off electric appliances (like iron or stove) so you won’t create a safety hazard when the power is turned back on. Remember to include air-conditioning among appliances you turn off. Never report hazardous situations by e-mail. Always call the office at 1-866-374-1234 so we can respond immediately!

Power Restoration FAQ

What is York Electric’s procedure for restoring power?

Restoring power after widespread outages is a big job that involves more than simply throwing a switch or removing a tree from a line. The main goal is to safely restore power to the greatest number of members in the shortest time possible. In order to accomplish this, the process begins with a damage assessment of the co-op’s lines and facilities by employees who have been specifically trained to accomplish those tasks. The assessment allows YEC to direct its resources (both labor and materials) to areas where they are needed the most.

If there is damage to power plants, switchyards or transmission lines, those facilities must be repaired by our power supplier before we can restore your service. Transmission lines seldom fail, but they can be damaged by storms. Tens of thousands of people could be served by a single high-voltage transmission line. When those facilities are working, problems in your co-op’s electric distribution system can be corrected.

Substations are repaired first. When a major outage occurs, the local distribution substations are checked first. If the problem can be corrected at the substation level, power may be restored to a large number of people. YEC has 24 substations on its system and there are over 3,500 miles of distribution lines which are routed from the substations.

Distribution lines are repaired. Main distribution supply lines are checked next, if the problem cannot be isolated at the substation. These supply lines carry electricity away from the substation to a group of members, such as a subdivision. When power is restored at this stage, all members served by this supply line could see the lights come on, as long as there is no problem farther down the line.

Individual services restored. The final supply lines, called service lines, carry power from the transformer on utility poles or underground transformers outside houses or other buildings. Line crews fix the remaining outages based on restoring service to the greatest number of members. Sometimes, damage will occur on the service line between your house and the transformer on the nearby pole. This may explain why you have no power when your neighbor does.

At what point should I call YEC?

You should always call YEC when you experience an outage. This is especially important if you see lines or poles down, sparking, or potential hazards preventing you from leaving your property or blocking any roadways. Call YEC’s outage reporting system, Power Touch, at 1-866-374-1234.

Why is an automated outage line faster than talking to a live person?

We encourage members to use 1-866-374-1234 whenever they have an outage, but especially during widespread outages. This automated system can take many more calls than our employees. An outage notification with all the pertinent member and electric distribution system data needed to restore your power is recorded within seconds in our operations center. It is extremely important for YEC to have your up-to-date telephone number – the one associated with your co-op account. Having your correct phone number will allow YEC to dispatch crews as quickly as possible.

Do I need to call more than once to report an outage?

Call any time you have a power outage. We are here to serve you. Once you report the outage, try not to call YEC or the automated outage line again unless you have an emergency. Be assured our crews are doing everything possible to restore your power as soon as possible. Unnecessary calls prevent those who have not reported their outage from getting through to report their outage. Also, duplicate calls can generate multiple outage records for the same location.

How does YEC provide for members with life sustaining equipment?

If you have medical equipment necessary to sustain life or avoid severe medical complications, notify YEC at once – don’t wait for an emergency. The dispatch office keeps a list of such members so service restoration may be properly prioritized. Priority consideration is given to these households in the event of an interruption of service such as a severe storm. It’s important to note, however, that no one can guarantee service continually. If you use special medical equipment, you should make advance arrangements either for emergency backup power or to relocate to a hospital or other facility during emergencies.

What should I do to prepare for a storm?

Listen to emergency recommendations provided by lead agencies such as local emergency management, civil defense, Red Cross, or police. Follow their recommendations.

Does YEC ever cut off power in advance because of anticipated damage?

YEC does not de-energize facilities because of anticipated damage such as flooding, ice or high winds. The disconnect devices on electrical equipment remain energized until a storm causes them to operate as designed and shut off current.

Why did a YEC line crew pass by my house without stopping?

It probably is because before service may be restored to you and your neighbors, work must be completed at another location.

Restoring power to homes and businesses is a top priority for York Electric Cooperative, but the safety of our members and employees always comes first – and it’s more important than ever to be cautious during extreme weather conditions. For workers in bucket trucks or attempting to climb poles and towers, high winds are very dangerous. Once a storm passes and winds drop to less than 30 miles per hour, we will safely begin diligently working on outages and bringing you power as quickly as possible.

Why am I the only house around without power?

There could be several reasons: Fuses or circuit breakers in your home could have tripped; trees could have fallen on your service; the transformer that serves you could have a blown fuse or other damage; the primary line could be de-energized because of damage; many YEC lines have more than one wire and your transformer may be the only one connected to the wire that is “dead”.

There is damage to the service wire leading to my house. What should I do?

Once damage to major lines has been repaired, YEC will work on lines serving individuals. At that time, we will determine if an electrician should fix the damage or if we can. Generally speaking, YEC will repair problems up to the weatherhead on overhead service and up to the meter on underground service. Past these points, an electrician is needed.

Why do I only have electricity in part of my house?

You could have a tripped circuit breaker or blown fuse in your home’s electric panel, resulting in partial service. If so, reset the breaker. You may also have a broken connector or wire at one of the service leads to your house. If so, call 1-866-374-1234.

When looking at damaged poles and line, how can I tell the difference between downed telephone, cable television and electrical lines? How can I tell if standing water with wires in it is electrified?

You can’t! Consider all cables and wires energized, whether electrical, cable television or telephone. After a storm any wire can be energized if it falls or gets wrapped around an energized line, whether a few feet or a block away. If a line is in water, there is even more reason to be cautious. Consider it and the water energized.

How should I hook up my portable generator?

Connecting a portable or recreational vehicle (RV) generator to home wiring can cause safety problems. Ideally, appliances should be directly plugged into a generator. If you must hook the generator to the main electric panel, it is very important to disconnect your home from YEC’s electrical system first. If not disconnected, power can flow from your generator into outside utility lines and kill or injure crews working on the lines – even some distance away. You could even injure a neighbor if power from your generator flows along common lines to another house.

When electric service is restored to your area, disconnect your generator before turning on power to your home. If you don’t, the generator can be damaged. When using a generator, make sure it has proper ventilation. It should only be operated outside. Remember the generator’s rated wattage is a function of the number of appliances it will power. The wattage of lights or other appliances run off the generator as a total should not exceed the rated wattage of the generator. The manufacturer’s recommendations must be followed for proper usage and load. If you have any doubts, consult a qualified electrician.

How will fallen trees near power lines be handled?

One of our top priorities will be to remove trees and debris that have damaged electrical equipment and are preventing service restoration. Members should not attempt to remove or trim foliage within 10 feet of a power line. If a tree or tree limbs have fallen on a power line or pulled it down, do not attempt to get close to the line. If the line is sparking, call YEC at 1-866-374-1234 and report a downed line.

When my power comes back on after a storm, will it stay on?

Once your service is restored every effort will be made to keep it on. Keep in mind, however, that as we repair other parts of the system, some interruptions may be required. In addition, YEC works closely with county, city and state agencies. At their request, we may have to interrupt a circuit if there is a fire or some other emergency. And during ice storms, it is not uncommon for the weight of ice on the line or surrounding trees to cause power lines to break. If the storm continues, a crew may restore your power, and then, with the further accumulation of ice on the lines, your lines may break again.

If YEC does not get my power back on within a certain time, do you pay for spoiled food?

No. Since YEC has no control over damage done to facilities during storms or other natural disasters, members at large could not be expected to pay for any individual member’s food that might spoil due to storm damage and resulting from electric service interruptions. Remember, electrical disturbances that cause you damage are likely to cause your cooperative damage too, but on a much larger scale. One lighting strike, for example, can cause equipment failure to your cooperative costing hundreds of thousands of dollars. Therefore, we do all we can to reasonably protect the electric system. You must do your part by protecting your own equipment from any storm damage or loss of power.

Will you pay for damage to personal property due to power quality problems caused by storms?

No. YEC maintains and operates facilities in a manner calculated to provide safe and reliable service. During abnormal weather, we make every effort to provide continuous service, but cannot be responsible for complete or partial failure or interruption of service, or for fluctuations in voltage from causes beyond our control. Just prior to a storm, and during early stages of restoration, members may wish to turn off or limit use of electronically sensitive and/or nonessential appliances.

What are special vulnerabilities of underground and overhead electric service? Why doesn’t YEC bury all overhead power lines?

Overhead services are more exposed to ice, high winds and flying debris. Underground facilities are subject to flooding. Damage to an overhead transformer is often easier to find. Damage to a pad mounted transformer serving underground cable may not be readily visible. Underground lines are susceptible to damage from digging and trenching equipment. And the cost of installing and maintaining underground conductor over hundreds of miles of sparsely populated rural areas would result in an enormous increase in the cost of electricity to you.

How long should restoration take following a storm? What could prolong the effort?

YEC’s service territory includes some 3,500 miles of electrical distribution line in a four county region. Restoration time, therefore, depends to a large degree on how many different lines are significantly damaged. Severe damage to transmission systems would have the most disabling effect on restoration efforts.

Restoring power to homes and businesses is a top priority for York Electric Cooperative, but the safety of our members and employees always comes first – and it’s more important than ever to be cautious during extreme weather conditions. For workers in bucket trucks or attempting to climb poles and towers, high winds are very dangerous. Once a storm passes and winds drop to less than 30 miles per hour, we will safely begin diligently working on outages and bringing you power as quickly as possible.

What is my best source of information on the restoration effort?

YEC works hard to update the local news media on the overall progress of restoration efforts affecting the area. YEC issues information releases to the news media regarding restoration progress during major power outages. Listening to the radio, or checking YEC’s website via battery-operated web devices are the best ways for you to be informed of storm restoration progress. Be sure to have an emergency kit, equipped with a battery-operated radio and fresh batteries, so you’re ready in case of a major power outage.

What plans does YEC have to bring in outside crews? How about normal service calls and work needed in areas not affected by the storm?

If damage from a storm exceeds our capability to restore service in a reasonable time, we will request crews from other cooperatives. Electric cooperatives work together to assist one another in times of need. In areas not affected by the storm, only a minimum crew will be left to handle calls. Members should expect routine service request calls such as security light repairs or meter connects to be delayed due to the storm.

Restoring power to homes and businesses is a top priority for York Electric Cooperative, but the safety of our members and employees always comes first – and it’s more important than ever to be cautious during extreme weather conditions. For workers in bucket trucks or attempting to climb poles and towers, high winds are very dangerous. Once a storm passes and winds drop to less than 30 miles per hour, we will safely begin diligently working on outages and bringing you power as quickly as possible.

What can members do to help get their power back?

Before calling to report an outage:

  • Check all circuit breakers or fuses to help determine if your service outage might be the result of a household problem.
  • Call a licensed electrician if you have significant water damage in your home that might make it unsafe or if the meter outside your home or any of the piping and wires on the wall of your home looked damaged.

Power Saver Rewards FAQ

If I need service, maintenance or replacement of my central A/C unit or heat pump what should I do?

You will need to make the service technician aware that you are participating in the Power Saver Rewards load management program so that he does not inadvertently disconnect the switch. Ask the technician to call YEC’s Member Services Department at (803) 684-4248 for assistance. We will need to answer any question(s) he may have and possibly deactivate the switch during the work or replacement on the appliance. Power Saver Rewards does not control window unit air conditioners, water heaters or pool pumps.

What is Load Management?

Load Management uses a small control switch which cycles power to an appliance or motor. This switch is connected to your appliance. You voluntarily give YEC the permission of interrupting power for short periods of time in exchange for a monetary bill credit.

Why does Load Management make sense?

Everybody wins when electricity is used more efficiently. The member saves immediately with bill credits and helps control the future cost of power. York Electric saves kilowatt demand charges in its wholesale power bill payments. By reducing the electricity used during the top peak hours, York Electric can significantly reduce its electric bill which helps control future power costs to members.

How will I know when the switch is activated? Is it possible to bypass the switch?

The switch has an LED light display window on the front. A blinking green light shows the switch is powered up and the red light indicates the switch is operational indicating the appliance that is participating in Power Saver Rewards program is being controlled. The switch cannot be over ridden or bypassed from your home. If the switch needs to be deactivated for maintenance/service work please call us at 803-684-4248.

Who qualifies for Power Saver Rewards Load Management program?

Residential members served by YEC in our test area. Rental properties require property owner’s signed consent to participate. YEC will control A/C and heat pumps. York Electric will not control window unit air conditioners.

How does the switch work?

A signal will be sent from the office on the day of operation to each switch. From the office console York Electric has two-way communications capabilities to send and receive information from the switch. What this means is once we send the command to cycle off a switch we will be able to see that the switch has received the command and has cycled off the appliance. At the end of our load management operation, we send a second command to the switches to release the appliance from load management, thus allowing the appliance to operate as usual.

Will I be inconvenienced?

No. The member rarely notices the switch has operated. The air conditioner compressor will be operating some during the activated period and the circulating fan continues to operate during the entire period. The temperature in the home should not rise more than a couple of degrees (if any). The slight rise in temperature should not generate any discomfort. It will not be necessary to adjust your thermostat during the operational hours of our load management program. The switch will not affect the thermostat’s settings of your appliances.

Power Saver Rewards does not control window unit air conditioners, water heaters or pool pumps.

Does this program lower my monthly electric bill?

Our load management program will not reduce the direct cost of your monthly power bill. It does however, reduce the amount of kilowatts purchased during peak demand hours of usage, thus helping York Electric keep our rates down. You will also save money from the power bill credits you will be awarded.

What does it cost to participate in the Power Saver Rewards program?

It costs nothing to participate; the switch is installed free of charge and satisfaction is guaranteed. If you are not satisfied with the switch, the switch will be deactivated at no cost to you. Most members never notice the switch’s operation.

Will I need to sign up for the Power Saver Rewards program every year?

No. Once the switch is installed at your home you will automatically continue in the program each year unless the program is discontinued or you request to have the switch deactivated.

How do I benefit from the Power Saver Rewards Load Management program?

You’ll save money through bill credits for participating. First, you will receive a one-time incentive bill credit of $20 for signing up, speaking with an installation technician and having a Power Saver Rewards switch installed at your home. Once the switch is installed you’ll receive $5 per summer month incentive for the time period during June, July, August and September.

There is no installation cost, no maintenance cost and no cost for deactivating the switch. By enrolling in YEC’s Power Saver Rewards program, you help reduce the need for future power generation. When you participate in load management, you also help us keep costs down by reducing the amount of electricity we have to purchase during our peak demand hours, which is a time when electricity is usually the most expensive.

Who will install the switch?

York Electric personnel or a Cooperative selected contractor will install management switches throughout our entire service area. York Electric guarantees 100% satisfaction to our members.

How long will the installation take? Will I need to be at home?

The installation should not take longer than an hour. If you are having more than one switch installed, the entire installation will take longer than an hour. Power Saver Rewards does not control window unit air conditioners, water heaters or pool pumps.

Who do I call if I have questions or problems?

Call York Electric’s Member Services Department at 803-684-4248 for assistance.

What should I do when leaving for an extended period of time?

We recommend that you set your thermostat to a higher temperature in the summer and a lower temperature in the winter since no one will be home for the extended period of time. This is not as a result of participating in the Power Saver Reward program, but actively participating in the conservation of electricity.

What if I move or sell my home?

Please let the new owner know about the switch and that you are participating in York Electric’s Power Saver Reward program. We will be glad to answer any question(s) the new owner may have about our program.

How do I sign up to participate in the Power Saver Rewards load management program?

Complete the online sign-up form, call (803) 684-4248 or (803) 548-4244 to speak with a member services representative – or download, fill out and mail the Member Agreement.

Download

Right of Way Maintenance FAQ

What is right of way (ROW)?

A: ROW refers to the corridor or pathway an electric line follows, whether it’s along the road or through the woods. ROW provides utility crews with access to lines for improvements, maintenance and repairs. It also provides an operational safety zone between the electric lines and trees, buildings, etc. On the majority of its lines, York Electric holds easements that give it the right to clear land 15 feet from either side of the wire.

Why is a clear ROW important?

A clear ROW minimizes outages, improves power quality, reliability and safety.

What happens when trees and vegetation remain in the ROW?

  1. Causes power outages
  2. Causes lights to blink
  3. Obstructs visual inspections, making repairs difficult and costly
  4. Blocks access for maintenance and repairs, causing delays
  5. Wastes electricity by drawing it to the ground
  6. Becomes a fire hazard
  7. Becomes a safety hazard for utility workers and members

Children and adults should never climb, trim or touch trees that contact power lines!

How is the ROW cleared?

The ROW is cleared by cutting, trimming, mowing and where permissible, applying herbicides. In most cases, all shrubs, brush and trees are removed under primary (main), overhead power lines. They are also removed, as and around secondary, low-voltage power lines that bring power from the transformer to your meter. Cutting and trimming are done by trained, professional utility tree trimmers using specific and proven standards typical to the industry.

Does ROW maintenance affect the environment?

York Electric’s ROW maintenance program balances the preservation of natural habitats against the service reliability needs of our members and the safety needs to the general public. In fact, it can actually benefit the ecosystem and other natural environments. ROW maintenance efforts create open areas that encourage the growth of wildflowers, ferns, grasses, flowers, berries and other low-growing shrubs.

Solar Power FAQ

Is York Electric opposed to the development of solar energy?

Not at all. The sun’s energy is a great, clean resource which we should utilize.

When will solar energy be cost effective for the average residential member to install?

Every year the cost of solar energy systems decrease. Even with these decreases, the cost justification is heavily dependent upon government tax credits. Presently payback ranges between 9 and 12 years, but this could change drastically if incentives were to increase or decrease.

Surge Guard FAQ

What is Surge Guard?

As your electronic equipment becomes more complex, the need to protect them from harmful voltage surges becomes more important. The delicate chips used in many of today’s appliances are vulnerable to surges that you cannot detect.

Why do I need Surge Guard?

York Electric already has lightning and surge protection built into its system to guard against most voltage surges caused by birds, animals or trees contacting power lines, accidents involving utility poles, lightning storms and other disturbances. Even with this protection, however, an occasional voltage surge can reach your home, and your unprotected electrical and electronic equipment may be at risk. Our units attach at the meter base to give your home a primary level of protection from power line surges.

Will Surge Guard protect my home from lightning strikes?

Surge Guard is not a substitute for lightning rods or other devices intended to protect people and property against direct or nearby lightning strikes.

What can Surge Guard do?

Surge Guard helps prevent damage to electrical and electronic equipment by suppressing and stepping down voltage spikes and surges caused by lightning or other circuit disturbances.

How do I know what devices are best for me and how much do they cost?

Come by one of our offices or call our member services department at 803-684-4248 for specific details and pricing.

YEC Member FAQ

As members of YEC, do we build equity in the co-op, and if we leave the area do we get a payout?

Capital Credits are a benefit of membership in a member-owned utility. Each year, YEC uses the revenues that exceed operating costs as equity. These funds and borrowed capital allow YEC to serve a growing number of members while implementing the latest technology to provide the best possible service. As a not-for-profit utility, YEC later returns these revenues to the members who originally paid them in his/her electric bills.

Each year, our members receive Capital Credit checks. For example, in May 2013, YEC will retire $800,000 in Capital Credits to people who were members in 1989, 1990 and 2011. Members will receive Capital Credit checks in the mail unless the amount due to them is less than $15. If the member’s refund is less than $15, the amount will be distributed and printed on their utility billing statement as a line item credit. The amount of Capital Credits returned is determined by total revenues received over expenses for the cooperative and your total energy billings for the year. They are paid periodically with board approval after review of YEC’s financial status.

If you leave YEC’s service area, your Capital Credits remain in your name and member number until they are retired. Therefore, you need to make sure YEC has your current mailing address.

What is a brief history of how YEC was formed?

Electric cooperatives were first formed in the 1930s when it became evident that established power companies were not ready to supply power to people living in rural America. The federal government established the Rural Electrification Administration (REA) to lend money for the construction of power lines outside population centers. Farmers and other rural residents formed cooperatives to borrow money from the REA and construct the needed lines.

YEC was founded in 1941 by a group of farmers and businessmen who realized that the only way to bring electric power to rural York County was to do it themselves. In March of 1941, 553 strong, these citizens began an endeavor that would change rural living in this area forever.

YEC’s capacity to supply dependable and affordable electric power also opened our rural areas to commerce and industry. New and diversified businesses came to the countryside, providing jobs, products and services.

Since 1941, YEC has been an active community partner and a dynamic force in the area’s economic development. We continue to serve the homes, farms, and small businesses in our rural areas, but we now also serve a growing number of residential, commercial, and large industrial accounts in York County’s expanding population centers.

The cooperative’s active accounts now total 45,122 and electric power is delivered across approximately 3,500 miles of line. YEC operates 24 substations that have been planned and placed to achieve maximum operational efficiency for current and future usage requirements.

Why do my lights ‘blink’ from time to time?

Momentary outages occur when a disturbance on the line is detected. These disturbances could be caused by a lightning strike, a squirrel or tree branch contacting the line, or a downed line or outage in a nearby area, etc. If a fault or short circuit occurs on a power line, a device called a recloser opens to stop it and then quickly closes. This device allows power to continue flowing through the line with only a brief interruption of service rather than causing an extended power outage. Although the process is quick and usually temporary, it may cause your lights to blink. If the short circuit continues, the recloser will operate or ‘trip’ three times before eventually stopping the flow of electricity and causing a power outage. This process protects the lines from damage by cutting off power to the affected section of the line and isolating the problem until it can be repaired.

Has YEC considered burying some power lines to prevent frequent power outages?

Approximately 1,500 of the 3,500 miles of line YEC has are underground. The majority of new lines we install annually are underground, and we see this trend continuing as this has become the norm for new residential and commercial developments.

While we do replace some overhead lines with underground service throughout the year, it would be too much of a financial impact on the membership to replace our existing 2,000 miles of line underground. It is estimated to cost hundreds of millions of dollars and take more than 10 years to complete. The impact on the rates we charge you, our members, would be tremendous. YEC’s linemen are extensively cross trained in all areas of operation. It would not have a negative impact on them.

YEC ever considered offering Internet service to their members?

YEC participated in a small pilot program with other electric cooperatives in the state and determined that it was cost prohibitive to offer Broadband Over Power Lines (BPL) at this time. YEC will continue to follow the research for this offering and will investigate any new advancements in this technology.

How much insulation do you need in your ceiling to get effective insulation protection?

The minimum requirement for ceiling insulation is R-30, but the recommendation is R-38-49. Proper insulation can cut energy costs by as much as half! Also, consider insulating outside walls, attics, spaces between floors, around heating ducts and pipes that are exposed to the elements. Insulate nooks and crannies such as wall outlets, gaps in siding and around the foundation and holes around pipes, ducts and exhaust fans.

If you would like to speak with someone in our Member Services Department about the services we offer, please drop by or call 803-684-4248 or email.

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