How It Works

OhmConnect members get paid every month for saving energy automatically with smart devices. Let’s take a peek underneath the hood to see how this is all possible.

How Do I Get Get Paid Every Month?

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

The first step to get paid every month is to link your utility account to OhmConnect. This allows us to measure the energy you save so we can pay you your monthly earnings. The more smart devices you use, the more you’ll save -- up until a point (the home only has so much energy to save). Payments start at $1 for using one smart plug, and go all the way up to $7 every month for using a smart thermostat and two smart plugs.

We recommend that you link a smart thermostat if at all possible. That is the key to saving the most money on your electric bill, and we’ll pay you $5 every month simply for using it to save energy.

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

    How Do I Save Energy?

    Once you have your smart devices linked to OhmConnect, they will participate in energy-saving events (we call these “OhmHours”). You will have several energy-saving events throughout the month when energy is most expensive, usually between 4-9 p.m on weekdays.

    During the OhmHour, your smart device will automatically power down to save energy (you may not even notice). At the end of the OhmHour, the smart devices will automatically power back up, returning whatever is plugged into it to its original state. If it was “on” at the start of the OhmHour, it will turn back “on.” But if it was off already, it will stay off.

    We understand that there will be occasions when you want to skip an energy-saving event and pay for expensive electricity (like if you’re having guests over for dinner). That’s why you can opt out of any two OhmHours a month and still earn your monthly payment.

    How Do I Opt Out of Events?

    If you do nothing and your smart devices are turned on, they will participate and you will get paid. If you want to opt out of that event, you’ll go into your OhmConnect account, and press the opt-out button shown on the screen.

    You get two opt-outs each month, which are represented by the two lightning bolts beneath your monthly earnings. When you opt out of one event, you’ll have one lightning bolt left. If you opt out of the next event, you will have no opt-outs left. If a third event happens and you don’t participate, you’ll lose your payment for the month. Don’t worry: You’ll have a chance to start again on the 30-day anniversary of the day you signed up.

    You can always unplug the smart plug to keep it from participating in an event. Just remember to plug it back in after the event is over or you won’t get credit for the next event when you can earn your monthly payment.

    Should I Leave My Smart Plugs ON All the Time?

    Map of California  showing how an OhmHour works

    Yes, you should leave your smart plugs ON all the time. We know it sounds counterintuitive, but they use very little power and it is how we are able to automatically turn your appliance off and on in order to qualify for the payment. When you set up your smart plug, turn it on and leave it on. Set it and forget it. You shouldn’t have to touch them to participate in an energy-saving event.

    Map of California  showing how an OhmHour works

    Why Didn't I Get Credit for Participating?

    If you didn’t get credit for participating, but didn’t opt out, it is usually one of three mistakes:

    • Your smart devices aren’t linked to OhmConnect: It’s one thing to install your smart plug and connect it to Wi-Fi, but it won’t earn you any money unless you LINK it to OhmConnect. To link your device to OhmConnect, go to our Device Linking Page here.
    • Your smart plugs aren’t on leading up to the energy-saving event: If the smart plug is turned off, we aren’t able to automatically turn it off. Check to make sure the power button is ON (light indicator glowing). Leave it on at all times so you never have to remember to turn it off and on. That’s why it’s a smart plug!
    • Someone in your house is turning them back on: If we are unable to verify the device is still off in the middle of the event, we assume it is turned back on and don’t credit you for participating. Make sure no one in your house overrides OhmConnect by powering up the smart plug or unplugging it.

    If it’s none of these issues, please reach out to our Help team.

    cash-out screen of OhmConnect for PayPal and soon gift cards

    How Do I Cash Out My Monthly Payment?

    Once you have earned your monthly payment, you may want to do something with it. You can cash out via your PayPal as long as you have $10 or more in your OhmConnect wallet. If you don’t have PayPal, we urge you to sign up, as it is safe and secure and an excellent way to take your payment.

    Why Am I Also Earning Watts?

    Map of California  showing how an OhmHour works

    Watts are the additional points we reward you for saving energy in addition to what you save with your smart devices automatically. You can earn Watts by avoiding energy-intensive chores like cooking on the stove or drying your clothes (better to do that during the day when energy is cheap!). Your Watts can be spent in the OhmConnect Rewards Marketplace to spin the guaranteed prize Wheel or enter to win the biweekly grand prize.

    Map of California  showing how an OhmHour works