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Baltimore Gas and Electric History

The ancestor of BGE started shortly after Rembrandt Peale exhibited gas lighting at his Holliday Street museum ( now known as the Peale Museum). Peale, William Gwynn, and three other partners incorporated the "Gas Light Company of Baltimore" on June 17, 1816. It was the first gas company in the Americas. Within a week, the new company secured a franchise to light the streets and homes of Baltimore. Since there was no method for measurement of gas used, the company had to charge a flat annual rate. To raise capital, it made an initial public stock offering in 1818. By 1821, it had converted over to manufacturing gas from coal. Over the next decades the company experimented with piping, compressors, and meters to better serve its customers. By 1870, the company had 15,301 customers.

In the 1870s, the Gas Light Company fell into a fierce price war with two new upstarts; Peoples' Gas Light Company and Consumers Mutual Gas Light Company of Baltimore. Ultimately, the companies resolved things by merging to become Consolidated Gas Company of Baltimore City in 1880. And though electricity arrived in Baltimore at the same time, it wasn't until 1900 when customers began switching to electricity for indoor lighting. This became abundantly clear to several financial syndicates that merging gas and electricity would not only improve service but also produce greater profits. In 1906, United Electric Light and Power Company and the Consolidated Gas Company merged to become the Consolidated Gas, Electric, Light and Power Company.

The merger allowed the firm to not only take over smaller competitors but also to expand operations by acquiring hydroelectric plants on the Susquehanna River. However, home appliances increased residential demand in the 1920s. And when drought lowered water levels on the Susquehanna in the 1930s, Consolidated built power plants with turbine generators to increase output. Throughout both world wars, the company continued to expand service to residential and business/industrial customers alike. In 1950, the company spent $9 million to phase out its manufactured gas and it replace it with cheaper natural gas. The switch-over to cleaner burning gas increased consumption. In 1955 the company changed its name to Baltimore Gas and Electric Company. And within a year, BGE helped organized one the world's largest fully integrated power pools with seven other electricity distributors and launched the Pennsylvania-New Jersey-Maryland (PJM) Interconnection.

With the expanding population in the Baltimore- Washington D.C metro area, demand for electricity continued increasing. BGE found itself buying increasing amounts of power from other utilities in the PJM grid and the added cost was passed on to its less-than-pleased customers. When Maryland deregulated its energy markets in 1999 to allow retail competition, BGE reorganized. It created Constellation Energy as a holding company and then sold its generation plants to it. As a result in 2001, BGE became a distribution-only utility and a subsidiary of Constellation Energy. Constellation was later taken over by Exelon in 2012. As a subsidiary, BGE became a regulated utility operating under Exelon Utilities.

Now as part of Exelon's family of companies, BGE continues its 200 year history as a generous corporate citizen. Through its employee volunteer programs that help raise awareness in sustainability, safety and wellness as well as its charitable giving that focus on measurable and sustainable program, BGE helps its communities through investments in education, neighborhood development, culture, and the environment.

Baltimore Gas and Electric Service Territory

Shop Baltimore Gas and Electric BGE Cheap Rates

Baltimore Gas and Electric serves over 1.3 million electric customers in some or all of the following counties:

Anne Arundel Baltimore Calvert Caroll
Harford Howard Montgomery Prince George's

Baltimore Gas and Electric serves these cities:

Annapolis Baltimore Columbia Ellicott City Harve De Grace

Shop for Baltimore Gas and Electric electricity suppliers in your area.

Compare Baltimore Gas and Electric Electricity Rates

Compare alternative supplier electricity rates
in Baltimore Gas and Electric service area.

  1. Enter zip code.
  2. Select energy type.
  3. Choose "residential" or "business".
  4. Click "Shop for Rates".

You'll then get to see the listing of all the energy suppliers' plans available in your area, along with rates, term lengths, and links to more detail information.

Some Maryland utilities service territories overlap in some counties. If the tool reports that it has found more than one serving your zip code, don't worry! Just choose your local utility from those listed.

How to Start New Baltimore Gas and Electric Service

Starting electricity service with Baltimore Gas and Electric is fast and easy. Just visit the Baltimore Gas and Electric web site and click on Start Service.

Customers should call the utility's Contact Center if they need their service turned on sooner.

Be ready to supply:

  • Service Address: The address where you want your service turned on or switched.
  • The start date for electricity service.
  • Personal Information: You will need your name, phone number, email address, SSN OR driver's license number, date of birth, and, for commercial customers, Tax ID.
  • Unfrozen Credit: If you have frozen your credit with any of the major credit agencies, you will need to have it temporarily unfrozen.

Will I Need to Pay a Deposit?

Maryland utilities check your credit worthiness before setting up an account and to determine whether you will need to pay a deposit. A utility can look at several factors:

  • Utility payment history for past two years.
  • The current payment status of your utility accounts.
  • Service disconnections in the past year.
  • Number of late payments in past 12 months (more than two).

  • A utility can can also ask for proof of:

    • Continuous employment for three years with one employer;
    • Ownership of the service address.

    If you must pay a deposit -- Maryland law states that deposits cannot be greater than an estimated 2 1/2 months of usage.

    The deposit will be due with your first month's bill. However, customers don't need to pay the deposit all at once. The deposit can be billed in up to three installments. The monthly deposit installments are added to your bill for the first three months.

    The utility must return deposits plus interest for residential service after one year if:

    • The customer pays their bill in full and on time for 12 consecutive months;
    • Or the customer otherwise establishes credit.

    Understand Baltimore Gas and Electric Distribution and Supply Charges

    In Maryland, your electric bill is composed of the electricity Distribution charges and the Supply charges.

    Distribution Charges consist of a flat customer charge per account and a distribution charge in cents per kWh for delivering electricity across the utility's local grid to a customer's home. All Baltimore Gas and Electric's residential customers pay the same distribution rate no matter who supplies their electricity. The Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) regulates distribution charges and these rates usually last several years before being reviewed.

    Electricity Supply Charges represent the cost for the electricity supplied in kWh by your utility or a retail supplier. Energy Choice charges from "alternative" or retail suppliers are listed on your bill under "Charges from Electric Generation Supplier".

    What is Baltimore Gas and Electric Standard Offer Service (SOS)?

    Baltimore Gas and Electric's Standard Offer Service (SOS) is a PSC-approved default rate for electricity generation supply if you don't want to shop for retail supplier. Also called the "Price to Compare" or PTC, this rate is a pass-through and represents the actual price Baltimore Gas and Electric pays for the electricity.

    The price Baltimore Gas and Electric pays breaks down into two principal pieces. First is the cost for the generated electricity. This is set during periodic supply auctions. The other piece is the cost of transmitting that generated high volatge electricity over the bulk power line grid to Baltimore Gas and Electric's substation transformers for local distribution. Bulk transmission charges must be approved by the Maryland PSC.

    Periodic auctions for residential generation supply are held about usually twice a year in October and April. Rates are divided into summer and winter pricing. New SOS summer rates, usually higher, last from June 1 through September. Winter rates begin October 1 and last through May.

    • Because the SOS rate changes every 6 months, customers can use the SOS to compare prices with energy retailer plans to see which offers them better value for their needs.
    • Plus, because SOS rates are usually announced 12 months in advance, customers can also compare long term plan prices from retailers to save even more.

    The Current Baltimore Gas and Electric SOS Rate

      Residential: 11.107 cents per kWh

      Expiration date: 10/31/2024

    Which Costs More? Baltimore Gas and Electric SOS vs Energy Choice

    The EIA estimates that the average Maryland monthly usage rate is around 957 kWh. Therefore, the average Baltimore Gas and Electric PTC bill roughly breaks down like this:

    Rate per 957 kWh Used Monthly Customer Charge Total
    PTC Supply Rate 11.107 cents 0 $106.29
    Monthly Distribution Charges $0.04034
    (effective Jan. 1, 2022)
    (effective Jan. 1, 2022)
    Total Bill $156.82

    Understand Maryland Energy Choice

    Maryland's electricity customers are free to choose a state certified retail electricity supplier. There are many different providers in Baltimore Gas and Electric service area, offering a huge variety of plans at competitive rates.

    Certified retail suppliers compete with each other to buy cheap electricity on the wholesale markets so they can attract more consumers with the lowest rates. That way, residents can compare and shop to find the best deal that best suits for their needs. For this reason, Maryland retail electricity supplier rates are not controlled by PSC. While shopping for electricity may seem confusing, customers can use their utility's PTC to compare offers by certified retail electricity suppliers. This way you can more easily judge which are the cheapest rates.

    Shopping for the right electricity plan at the right rate is generally a straightforward process. But not everyone has the same needs. That's why retail electricity suppliers in Maryland offer two types of plans:

  • Fixed Electricity Rates are just plans where the price rate for the electricity doesn't change over the term of the contract. Different retail suppliers offer term plans from 3 to 36 months, meaning customers can count on stability and predictable monthly bills for months or years, depending on their preferences. However, early cancellation fees for breaking a contract could apply.

  • Variable Rates Don't want to commit to an electricity plan for months or years? You can choose a variable plan. Variable plan rates on these contracts can change from month to month depending on the price of electricity. So your rate could go up one month or down the next. However, these plans don't have any termination fees and this allows customers the flexibility to shop for new rates and switch to better deals without paying any penalty.
  • Understand Your Baltimore Gas and Electric Electric Usage

    Your Baltimore Gas and Electric usage affects your energy bills.

    While your electricity usage habits are unique to you, any Maryland native will tell you that winters can get chilly and snowy while summers can get oppressively hot and miserably humid.

  • Nearly half (42.2 %) of Maryland homes use electricity for space heating.
  • Over 90% of homes in the South Atlantic region of the U.S. have air conditioning. In Maryland, residents use an average of 12% of their total annual energy costs for air conditioning.
  • The remainder of eletricity use goes to refrigeration, lighting, electronics, clothes dryers, and small appliances.
  • Not sure how much electricity you really use? Baltimore Gas and Electric customers can request up to 12 months of their electric usage plus other relevant information free of charge.

    The best way to cut your electricity bill is to reduce your usage:

  • Seal your doors and windows against winter and summer drafts. Not only does it keep out the cold or hot air but it also reduces the amount of mold, pollen, and other allergens getting into your home.
  • Add insulation to your attic, basement, and duct work.
  • Install a programmable or smart thermostat. Programming it to set-back the temperature when you're away or inactive can improve your home's energy efficiency and help cut your electric bills.

  • Your utility company can provide a wealth of resources and offers programs to help you improve your home's energy performance.

    Understanding Your Baltimore Gas and Electric Bill

    Your Baltimore Gas and Electric bill comes packed full with lots of information. Though these can be confusing to customers, they also help you better understand your usage and rate. Here is where we break down the most important items on a sample Baltimore Gas and Electric electric bill.

    Understand Page One of Your Monthly Baltimore Gas and Electric BGE Bill

    Understand Page Two of Your Monthly Baltimore Gas and Electric BGE Bill distribution charge

    • A: Bill Overview. It states your service address and personal account number with Baltimore Gas and Electric. It also shows the date BGE issued the bill.

    • B: Electricity Supply. This shows the name of your electricity supplier and their Maryland Electricity Choice ID number.

    • C: Current BGE Balance. Here you find any outstanding balances owed to BGE, the amount of any new charges, and the date payment is due.

    • D: Gas Supply. This shows the name of your natural gas supplier (if applicable) and their Maryland Gas Choice ID number.

    • E: Due Date and Late Payment. For the first month, BGE charges a late fee of 1.5% for any unpaid amount owed. Additonal charges are assesed afterwards and are not to exceed 5%.

    • F: Other Charges and Credits. These are amounts owed to you by BGE (if applicable) and are broken down on page 3 of the bill.

    • G: Payment Stub. Just detach and return with your payment. It also includes your account number, the amount due, a space for the amount being paid, and the due date.

    • Page Two

    • H: Electric Details. This section shows how your year to date usage and how the average temperature compares to last year during the current billing period. This can be very helpful when you're trying to compare nergy usage and weather.

    • I: Gas Details. This section shows infomation about your natural gas usage for the past year (if applicable).

    • J: Electric Meter Details. This shows the type of rate for the your service address, the meter number, and the meter data which includes the start and end dates, the number of days, and total kWh used.

    • K: Supply and Delivery Charge Details. Here you can find details about your electricity supply cost and Baltimore Gas and Electric's distribution charges which includes their delivery charge by kWh, the monthly customer charge, and any additional riders, taxes, and fees.

    • L: Price to Compare information. BGE is required to provide customers with the current Standard Offer Service price as well as the effective dates. Customers can use this information to shop for the cheapest electricity rates.

    • M: Other Payment Methods. The section lists other ways for customers to pay their BGE bills such as online, by phone, or in person.

    Baltimore Gas and Electric Coupons, Energy Promotions, Discounts, Rebates and Promo Codes

    As your local utility, Baltimore Gas and Electric offers few options and discounts available to help its customers save some money. Some programs offer money-saving incentives while others could make paying your monthly bills easier and may even help you qualify for a discounted electricity rate.

    Program Name Program Type Benefit
    Appliance and HVAC Rebates Program Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

    Maryland residential customers of Baltimore Gas and Electric can now take advantage of rebates on the purchase of ENERGY STAR®certified appliances and HVAC systems.

    • Appliances include energy-saving dish washers, powerstrips, dehumidifiers, pool pumps, water heaters and more with rebates from $30 to $500.
    • Get grants up to $3,000 when you upgrade to energy efficient HVAC equipment through BGE's HVAC Efficiency Program.
    Appliance Turn-In Program Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

    Recycle your old working fridge or freezer and get $50. You can also receive a $25 rebate for an old, working room AC unit if picked up along with a qualifying fridge or freezer. Plus, you can save money on your electricity bill when you purchase a new ENERGY STAR® appliance to replace it.

    • Must be an electric customer of Baltimore Gas and Electric.
    • You must own the appliance(s)
    • Refrigerators and freezers must be 10 to 30 cu. ft. in size, empty, clean and free of mold, and operating (cooling) at the time of the scheduled pickup.
    Energy Efficient New Homes Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

    Baltimore Gas and Electric is working closely with area builders who are constructing energy-efficient homes that deliver more than just energy savings.

    Baltimore Gas and Electric identifies an energy-efficient home as one that is 30% more efficient than a code-built home (2009 IECC). Entire new homes can also receive the ENERGY STAR®certification. Energy efficient homes not only reduce energy costs but also increase comfort. Homes qualified through the ENERGY STAR®New Homes Program achieve energy efficiency through established, reliable building techniques.

    Quick Home Energy Check-up Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

    Baltimore Gas and Electric customers can sign up for an Energy Check-up of their home. The Check-up and the energy-saving products they install during a Check-up are provided to BGE customers at no additional cost! A certified energy auditor will:

    • inspect your home and identify areas where you may be wasting energy
    • Install energy-saving products at no additional cost.
    • Make recommendations for upgrades that can save energy and qualify for rebates.
    Lighting Discounts Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

    Baltimore Gas and Electric customers can take advantage of instant discounts available on select ENERGY STAR?® certified LEDs and Fixtures at retail locations throughout BGE's service territory or through the BGE marketplace website.

    Baltimore Gas and Electric Payment Arrangements Bill payment assistance

    Baltimore Gas and Electric offers a Deferred Payment Arrangement Plan to allow residential customers to pay their account balance in monthly installments. These installments are billed along with your current monthly charges and both must be paid on time, in full each month in order for you to stay on your payment arrangement.

    • Payment arrangements are based on the amount of the balance, income, household size, and your history with prior payment arrangements.
    • Residential customers whose main source of total household income is from government or other low-income entitlement programs can enroll in the Bill Extender Plan. This plan extends the bill's due date without a late charge.
    • Contact customer service or sign up online.
    BGE Gift of Energy Bill payment assistance

    You can make a payment toward a friend or family member's BGE bill. Your gift will appear on a future bill as a credit to the recipient's BGE bill.

    The Fuel Fund of Maryland Bill payment assistance

    The Fuel Fund of Maryland provides energy assistance to help pay the heating and utility bills of customers who are facing hardships. You can help donating to the fund when you pay your Baltimore Gas and Electric bill online.

    Low Income Energy Efficiency Program (LIEEP) Residential Energy Efficiency

    Maryland's EmPOWER Program helps eligible Baltimore Gas and Electric customers to reduce their electric bills through home weatherization and conservation with installation of materials and equipment at no charge.

    Maryland Energy Assistance Program (MEAP) Bill payment assistance

    Through the Office of Home Energy Programs (OHEP), MEAP is a federally-funded program (known nationally as "LIHEAP") that helps low-income households with their home energy bills. The program is available to eligible customers whose income is 175% of the Federal Poverty Level or below.

    Utility Service Protection Program (USPP) Bill payment assistance

    Customers who qualify for MEAP may qualify for the Utility Service Protection Program (USPP). Customers receive an electric bill for the same amount each month throughout the year. The USPP program helps qualified low-income households stay connected and pay off their past-due utility bills.

    Arrearage Retirement Assistance Bill payment assistance

    The Maryland Office of Home Energy Programs (OHEP) offers grants to customers with large, past due electric and gas bills.

  • Customers must have a past due bill of $300 or greater to be considered eligible.
  • Customers may receive a grant for up to $2,000 towards their past due bill.
  • Limit is one grant every five years.
  • Electric Universal Service Protection (EUSP) Bill payment assistance

    EUSP is a grant for electricity assistance.

    • The amount due for your current bills is spread out evenly over a 12-month period.
    • Customers must enroll in budget billing or "Average Payment Plan".
    • Contact your Local Home Energy Program Office for more information.

    Baltimore Gas and Electric Reviews

    Because Baltimore Gas and Electric serves a large-sized market, knowing how well it ranks among other similar-sized utilities can tell you a lot about how well it serves its customers. Baltimore Gas and Electric is accredited with the BBB and the utility is very well rated in Escalent's 2021 Utility Trusted Brand & Customer Engagement™: Residential study. It is also ranked sixth in J.D. Power's 2021 Electric Utility Residential Customer Satisfaction Study.

    MD Energy Ratings Better Business Bureau Escalent 2021 Utility Study J.D. Power 2021
    N/A accredited,
    A+ rating
    of 1000 pts
    of 1000 pts

    How do I get the Cheapest Baltimore Gas and Electric Rate?

    Shopping for a new Energy Choice Plan can feel confusing at first. But, there are 3 things you should have with you when you shop for electricity:

    1. Your current bill. Your past usage per billing period can help you estimate a how much a plan might cost you each month.
    2. The current Baltimore Gas and Electric SOS rate and expiration date. You can use Baltimore Gas and Electric SOS to quickly compare retail supplier offers to shop for a better electricity rate. You can choose the utility's rate but remember that changes seasonally.
    3. Your Baltimore Gas and Electric account number. Your 11 digit account number is at the top of your bill. Having this handy lets you sign up with an alternative electricity supplier right away.

    Before you start shopping, there's some final last details you also need to understand ahead of time:

    Who bills me? Baltimore Gas and Electric sends a single bill that outlines and add up your monthly charges.

    What are the Terms of Service? The Terms of Service explain and identify specific charges and any fees a customer will face when they sign up for an electricity plan. Many suppliers offer different rates for plans with different term lengths. All Maryland electricity customers should read and understand the terms of service and contract summary for any plan they are interested in before they sign on to the plan.

    What are early termination fees? Switching retail suppliers before a contract ends can involve paying early termination fees. These can bite you if you want to switch retail providers before your electricity plan contract ends.

    Read Baltimore Gas and Electric Customer Reviews

    Compare Maryland Electricity Rates in Your Area

    Electricity Out? Wires Down? Here's Who You Contact...

    Having a problem with your electricity service? Here's the proper people to call:

    Baltimore Gas and Electric Billing Problems

    If you have trouble paying your monthly bill call Baltimore Gas and Electric's Customer Service: 1-800-685-0123, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. You can learn what options you have. Be sure to have your account number ready. You can also apply for payment methods online through your Baltimore Gas and Electric account.

    Due Date Extension If you having trouble paying your bill and are not facing a pending disconnection and have not have defaulted on a Payment Arrangement in the last 12 months, you may qualify for Due Date Extension. Note that delaying your current due date does not affect the due date of future bills. Therefore, your Due Date Extension may fall close to your next due date. To find out more, log into your Baltimore Gas and Electric MyAccount.

    Consider the Budget Billing Plan: If you are constantly blind-sided by seasonally high bills, Baltimore Gas and Electric's Budget Billing spreads your costs evenly month to month by charging a pre-arranged amount with each bill. This ensures that customers aren't presented with unexpectedly high bills at peak-usuage times of the year.

    In the Dark?

    You can report outages or downed powerlines in your area by calling 1-800-898-8042. Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    You can also report an outage on-line.

    All power transmission lines are extremely dangerous! Never attempt to move a downed power line by yourself. Call 911 and then notifiy Baltimore Gas and Electric at 1-877-778-2222!

    What!? There's still no power?

    You can track outage repairs throughout Baltimore Gas and Electric service area on this map.

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    Baltimore Gas and Electric Service Area Electricity Providers

    Company Rating Phone
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    American Power & Gas
    866 682 9816
    Spring Power & Gas
    13 results

    Zip Codes with the Cheapest Electricity Rates in Baltimore Gas and Electric Territory