Peak Hours / Off-Peak Hours

What is the peak / off-peak hours option?

The peak / off-peak hours option lets you access a lower electricity tariff for 8 hours a day (usually at night). This contract is based on a single monthly payment, but two prices per kWh of electricity, depending on the time of day or night the electricity is consumed:

- An 'off-peak hours' price for 8 hours per day (usually between 10 pm and 6 am, although the actual times are set by the electricity grid operator)
- A 'peak hours' price set slightly higher than the base tariff price for the rest of the day

This option can work in your favor if you consume the majority of your electricity during off-peak hours. The 'base' tariff option gives you a single price per kWh of electricity throughout the day.

Which hours are peak, and which are off-peak?

The time periods are set by the grid operator (ENEDIS), and vary between regions and local areas. Multiple periods may be offered in your area, but off-peak hours are usually a continuous 8-hour period of the night, such as:
- 10 pm to 6 am
- Midnight to 8 am Nevertheless, discontinuous periods may also be offered to cope with local grid load balancing constraints, such as:

- 1:30 to 7:30 am and 12:30 to 2:30 pm (Nantes)
- 2 to 7 am and 1 to 4 pm (Marseille)

To find out what the off-peak hours are in your area, send an email by clicking here

Why are there off-peak hours for electricity?

Electricity consumption fluctuates significantly depending on the time of day, the season of the year, and even the day of week.
At the peak point of daily consumption - usually early evening - costly generating resources are required to ensure that generation balances consumption. Why are there off-peak hours for electricity?
So the off-peak hours system has been introduced to time-shift a proportion of peak consumption to less consumption intensive times - usually at night - and spread the load on the electricity transmission grid.

Are there off-peak hours for gas?

No. This type of system isn't needed, because the cost of supplying natural gas does not rise significantly at times of high consumption. So natural gas prices remain stable throughout the year.

How do I know if I'm on a peak / off-peak hours tariff?

Your electricity bill shows the details of your supply contract and its tariffs. If you have a peak / off-peak hours contract, your bill will show you the times of peak and off-peak hours, as well as the tariffs for both periods.

Do I have to change my meter to switch to the peak / off-peak hours option?

Not necessarily. If yours is an electronic meter, it simply needs to be reprogrammed But if yours is an electromechanical meter, then it will have to be changed. In both cases, the work will need to be carried out by a qualified technician.
Please contact your ENGIE adviser for more details.

Is it easy to switch back to a base tariff from a peak/off-peak hours contract?

Yes, but again, a qualified technician will have to reprogram or replace your meter.