CPL Energy is a Direct Energy company that provides retail electric service in Texas. The company offers fixed rate, variable rate, and prepaid options, including lower rates at night and on weekends.
Our Take On CPL Energy
Based on our analysis of available offers and of online customer reviews, we rate CPL Energy 4 out of 5 stars
What we like about CPL Energy:
- Good variety of plans, including the opportunity to save on nights and weekends
What made CPL lose some points:
- Terms and Conditions could be more clear and transparent
- On all fixed and some variable plans, CPL charges a base charge of $4.95 per month
- No Green Energy plans available
|Plan Type||Contract Length||Features||Early Termination Fee||Our Thoughts|
|Residential Fixed||12, 24, and 36 month options||
Plan Types In-Depth
Fixed vs Variable Rates
With a fixed rate plan, the price you pay for your electricity (in ¢/kWh) stays the same throughout the whole period of the contract. Customers on a fixed contract should, however, keep track of when their contract ends, as many retail electric providers will automatically switch them to a variable rate once the contract is finished. Find more information about fixed rates in Texas here.
Some customers have reported that they appreciate savings on fixed rate electricity plans with CPL Energy, particularly those who were able to lock in a good rate at the right time of year. As electricity prices per kilowatt-hour fluctuate throughout the year, depending on the time of year you may actually lose money by not being able to take advantage of prices when they are low (this is where time of year becomes a factor in how good of a deal you can get with a fixed price plan). However, because electricity prices tend to increase over time, locking in fixed rates for longer periods may prove advantageous and deliver savings. This is why in general we recommend that customers choose fixed rate contracts of at least one year.
CPL offers pre-paid plans, which require a smart meter. Unde pre-paid plans, consumers purchase a fixed dollar amount of kWh at their discretion. Usually pre-paid plans result in a higher price per kWh, but they require no deposit or security check, and so may be the best choice for some consumers. Upon depletion of the available kWh in your account, your electricity will shut off.
Pre-paid plans can often be the source of customer complaints, because it might be difficult to track your usage, and because the price per kWh can vary from month to month.
CPL charges a monthly fee of $4.95 on its fixed rate plans. Whereas some providers waive their monthly fee, base charge, or minimum usage fee after a certain kWh usage threshold (usually above 1000 or 2000 kWh/month), CPL does not.
Green Energy Plans
Green Energy plans promise electricity purchased from renewable energy production, or equivalent offsets. CPL Energy does not offer green energy plans. If you are interested in purchasing green energy in Texas, we recommend you check out some of our articles on green energy in Texas.
We rate CPL Energy for customer experience. Many customer complaints are related to problems related to prepaid plans, though some customers also reported negative experiences with customer service. CPL is not accredited with the Better Business Bureau.
CPL Retail Energy is part of the Direct Energy family of companies, which provides electrcitiy to more than 5 million people thorughout the United States and Canada.
Contact CPL Energy
General Customer Service
12 Greenaway Plaza
Houston, TX 77046