How it Works

With OhmConnect, it’s easy to get rewarded for saving energy.
Here’s how it works: It all starts with something we call an #OhmHour.

Coming Up

How it works: #OhmHours 101

What’s an #OhmHour, you might be wondering?

In short: The #OhmHour is where the magic happens.

It’s a brief window of time (usually on weeknight evenings) when demand on the energy grid is so high that utility companies would rather pay their customers to reduce our collective usage than the alternative - firing up a dirty, expensive “peaker” plant.

It works like this:

For a deeper dive into the mechanics of how #OhmHours work, check out this guide.

A family in the kitchen baking cookies, portraying participation at OhmConnect

Who can participate?

Currently, our service is only available to folks who live in California, Texas or Toronto, Canada - places where smart meter data is easily accessible and we can quickly and easily see how much electricity your household used in a particular hour.  

Participating utilities include:

Click here to learn how to connect your utility to OhmConnect and get started.

Don’t live in California, Texas or Toronto but want to get in on the action? We welcome energy-savers of all stripes in our Token program! Simply tell us what you do to conserve energy during #OhmHours and you can earn tokens to spend in our Token Marketplace.

A hand putting money into the piggy bank illustrating how much you can earn with OhmConnect

“How much can I earn with OhmConnect?”

The average OhmConnect community member earns between $100-$300 per year.

That said, there are ways to maximize your earnings by taking advantage of streaks (rewards given for successfully hitting your #OhmHour goals many times in a row) and statuses (point multipliers given to community members who can reduce a significant amount of energy each hour.)

Also, with a $20 reward for every person you refer to OhmConnect, the earning potential is limitless!

How do OhmConnect rewards work?

How it works: Points

There are two ways to earn rewards with OhmConnect. The first is points, which can be converted to cash (1 point = $0.01), and you can earn these:

  1. By beating your forecast during Points #OhmHours! More advanced users can also earn streak and status level points, as described in the article How do you calculate my #OhmHour results?
  2. By referring friends and earning referral bonuses, as described in the article How do I refer new users for points?

How it works: Prizes

The second is via Prize #OhmHours. Instead of earning points for using less energy, Prize #OhmHours give you a chance to win a prize. You'll get an energy-saving goal for each Prize #OhmHour, and if you beat it, you'll be entered to win the next prize drawings (which happens every 2 weeks).

Here’s how it works. There are three ways to qualify for the prize drawing every few weeks. You need to do ONE of the following:

Power plant illustrating where the money from OhmConnect comes from

Where does the money come from?

In the US and Canada, there are nine regional energy markets where energy is traded.  These markets provide a trading mechanism for buying and selling energy over many timeframes.  Multi-year planning is done to make sure that the region has the right development of infrastructure.  Minute by minute planning is done to make sure that supply and demand are balanced and there are no blackouts.

Here’s how it works: OhmConnect trades energy in these markets like a power plant.  We bid a quantity of energy at a specific price and if the market accepts our bid, we are contracted to deliver that energy. The trick is that we don’t actually create any new energy - we simply reduce as a community, which has the same effect as contributing energy to the grid.  

We get paid at various intervals (daily, monthly, annually) with complex rules but we are aiming to create a fun and easy experience that is simple and rewarding.  We don't want people to have to learn about locational marginal pricing, proxy demand resources, load point adjustments or any of the other myriad complexities necessary to participate in the energy market.

How to connect your utility and get approved

In order to earn points and be eligible for prizes, you’ll need to connect your utilities online account to OhmConnect. Each utility company is a little different, so you’ll want to check out the instructions for your specific electricity provider:

Welcome to the OhmConnect community!