Glacial Energy Review

Glacial Energy is an alternative electric supplier located in nearly every deregulated market in the U.S. including Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, New York, and Texas.

On the positive side they offer an easy to read contract agreement to customers and generally, like most alternative suppliers, can offer customers on default service savings.

On the negative side, they rarely offer fixed rate contracts or a variable product tied directly to the wholesale electricity market.  Instead, they offer what they call a “Glacial Index” rate.  The Glacial Index rate is essentially a floating rate that has no boundaries as to how high it can go.  Furthermore, they require their customers to lock in for a term of 12 months or more.  With a floating rate product such as this there should be no need to have to commit to a 12 month term agreement.

If you’re a small business looking for savings on your electricity bill and are still on default service, you will most likely save some money by signing with Glacial Energy in the short term, however I would caution that in the long term they can increase your rate at any given time if you are on their Glacial Index product.

More serious consumers should look to compare electric rates and sign a contract with a provider that offers a fixed rate or a floating index rate that is tied directly to the wholesale market in which case you are taking a calculated risk.  The Glacial Index is random risk with Glacial having all of the power to increase the rates at anytime.

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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

David May 8, 2010 at 7:49 pm

Glacial Energy offers Month-to-month agreements for most of its customers. Yes, Glacial offers a variable-based indexed product, but would not be able to retain as many customers as it does if it arbitrarily and outrageously raised its prices to unreasonable degrees.

Glacial Engery has consistently provided savings of between 10-20% off the utility rates, with very straightforward and customer-friendly contracts.

Jake Carey-Rand May 10, 2010 at 1:09 pm

You are mistaken. Glacial Energy encourages its customers to switch and sign onto a month-to-month contract, which can be cancelled at any time. They have an option for a 12-month contract, but for most businesses this is not practical and not recommended by their representatives or agents. Where are you getting your information?

ElectricityWatch Team May 13, 2010 at 5:31 pm

In response to the above two comments:

Our information is derived from a network of market participants that include brokers, marketers, and customers. We were told by numerous channels that Glacial is unwilling to provide a month to month contract. We tried to contact Glacial directly by calling their 888 number listed on their site, but we were unable to reach anyone.

It is possible that Glacial does offer a month to month contract, but we have been unable to verify this. Whether they do or don’t, we still stand by our statement that more serious energy buyers should look toward other providers for the reasons explained in the article dealing with the rate product that they offer.

Pennsylvania Tim September 7, 2010 at 6:55 pm

Glacial Energy’s normal business practices are to jack up the prices. They do not maintain their customers for long. Rates have very little correlation to market prices and the adder varies between 20-80 mils per month, depending on how much they need. Glacial Energy lost over 30% of its book in CT from Jan-June 2010 while employing a sales force and enrolling customers.

They standardize transmission and capacity across all accounts. So the people with good profiles get especially screwed.

It is very unlikely that anyone these past 16 months has saved any money in any market with Glacial. They provide “historical quotes” that are simply fictitious numbers and are based on 1.5 cent adder, when in reality the adder they give you averages 4-5 cents. Most of their sales people are unaware of this fact and don’t actually view the invoices.

Energy Consultant September 17, 2010 at 3:17 pm

I could not agree more with Pennsylvania Tim. I work for a national energy consulting firm that manages well over 100 commerical customers across the country. We do not recommend any of our customers do business with Glacial Energy. I have talked to around 25-30 different reps from Glacial and more than half of them have no clue about energy markets. They claim savings based on historical information. Any bright individual knows that you cannot forecast savings based off of historical information. I too have seen Glacial charge up to double of what other national suppliers charged on the same index. However, every other suppliers index I have ever workded with is tied to the wholesale markets and the costs associated with the index are transparent. Glacial is unwilling to share their fees and the reason is becuase the sales guys do not understand how much they really are. If you want to save money and are considering Glacial, make sure to compare them to others first. Also, make sure to ask them about their payment terms and the interested they charge. I have seen them give customers 5 days to get their bills paid….which is far less than any reputable supplier.

Dan the Energy Broker October 4, 2010 at 2:26 pm

The original post and the negative replies are completely incorrect. I have been recommending to new customers and following up with past customers that I have signed on to the Glacial Index rate. Never have I had them sign anything longer than a month to month contract. Actually, I was under the impression that they do not offer anything else. I am constantly monitoring the rates for these clients to make sure that the price sticks to the indexed forecast and that the forecast is a lower rate than the utility. If they didn’t stick close to the forecast in a single month, I would switch my customer in a heartbeat. @Pennsylvania Tim: They use the “Historical Data” to forecast future usage, not future rates, as you seem to imply. The amount of uninformed bashing that goes on here in relation to Glacial is very interesting…People rarely bash companies online unless they have something to gain…

ElectricityWatch Team October 5, 2010 at 10:56 am

Dan The Energy Broker….

As stated before in our comments, it is possible that Glacial offers a month to month contract. However, we have attempted to call the 800 number on Glacial’s website several times and have been unable to talk to anyone period, let alone talk to someone who could verify this.

Glacial Energy has without a doubt (as I have seen with my own eyes) performed forecasts for individual customers that predict their future rates. Perhaps they have stopped doing this, or don’t do it for your customers, but they have done it before.

Again, it is our belief that a customer can save money versus a utility default rate by signing up with Glacial in the short term. However, more serious energy users should look to contracting with a company that offers fixed rates. The bottom line is, Glacial can increase their rates at any moment, and they will be forced to do it when the market spikes whether that is today, tomorrow, or years from now, it will happen.

There is no intentional bashing done on this site, articles are written based on precise information from a variety of sources. People outside of the website management team are free to give their opinions on the articles. Perhaps you should get some relationships going with some other electric companies so that you can compare their products and offers to that of Glacial. If you are interested in doing so feel free to send us an email and we can provide you with some contacts at other companies. Glacial is not a bad company, but it is this article’s opinion that commercial customers would be better off with other electric companies because of the rate product that Glacial offers.

Melody October 26, 2010 at 5:27 pm

We just received a quote from Glacial Energy. I have my reservations but the president seems to think they are a good company. With regard to your reply on 10-5-10 to Dan the Energy Broker , you’re right and he’s wrong. I have in front of me a copy of their Forecasted Price Comparison with their estimated forecast rate comparison from 11/10 to 10/11 and their Forecasted Historical Cost Analysis with their estimated historical rate comparison from 09 to current. Dan said they use this historical data to forecast future usage, not future rates, and he’s wrong. I don’t know what to make of Glacial Energy.

Phil1220 October 27, 2010 at 12:06 pm

My business paid a rate of $0.126 cents in September with Glacial. I couldn’t believe if when I saw the bill. I mean the PPL default rate is only $0.104 I think. I switched to a fixed rate at $0.088 with another provider.

FormerGlacialEmployee November 6, 2010 at 6:47 pm

I am a former employee of Glacial Energy who was released from employment this September with about 200 others nationwide. The “insider” look at the company is the give “ZERO” training to new hires. The management style in my former region was “hands-off” until about 5 days before the axe fell and then your Regional Director & Senior VP were astonished to find out why sales were so bad. I can testify to the fact that you are really in the dark when it comes to selling the product.

Stevey G. November 18, 2010 at 8:46 pm

Of all the energy suppliers licensed in the Northeast marketplace, Glacial is by far the worst company to transact with. Their pricing, called the “Glacial Index”, is a joke. This is the classic bait and switch. They lure customers in with very low initial rates promising huge savings and then slowing jack the rates up to cover the fact that they offered a lower rate in the first few months.

Put simply, these guys are bad news.

George IL February 16, 2011 at 3:37 pm

Some of the things I have read here are true. Others are not. Full disclosure, I have worked for Glacial Energy. They offer literally zero training. They also make up forecasts which are inaccurate. However, they no longer use the “Glacial index”. They currently use a “fixed adder”, which is a margin on top of the wholesale cost of electricity. Overall, they are a decent company, but now that I am working with other companies, Glacial is left behind in the dust. That being said, my customers did see very significant savings versus the utility. In my opinion, Glacial is trying to get better and is NOT AT ALL a scam. However, they definitely are not even close to the best company out there.

James MI April 4, 2011 at 11:12 am

Glacial said they would save us 10% on our Detroit Edision electric bill when in fact they are charging 15% higher. What a joke, Glacial sucks!

Scott April 11, 2011 at 6:33 am

To George IL,

I’ve been considering selling for Glacial Energy however just getting my feet wet in the industry. Can you suggest the top energy companies t0 work for…gladly appreciate any info. Thnaks!

pennsylvania tim July 1, 2011 at 11:01 am

Your review is spot on, but things have become even more disturbing than you even stated in your original review.

I have seen recent PECO Glacial bills at .18 with GRT and recent PPL Glacial Energy bills at .17.

Electricity Watch: Do you still stand by the recommendation that you think most customers can save money? The wholesale index was only around .05 during the 3 months, and capacity, transmission and losses shouldn’t add anymore than .025 per kWh. It appears that Glacial Energy jacked up the rates by nearly .10 per kWh over cost, which will probably merit an investigation by the Public Utility Commission after providing a forecast of under .07 per kWh.

Saying index in this industry implies that there will be a correlation to some index (i.e. day-ahead, real-time, LMP hub/zone, PJM general, etc…), which obviously is not the case. Do you have any ideas on a better descriptor? Perhaps the monkier “Glacial Rate” is the most fitting since it’s really not correlated to any currently known electricity index.

This is disturbing and you would do well to warn your readers and adjust this column if necessary.

Thuy Dallas October 3, 2011 at 5:00 pm

Beware of variable rate from Glacial Energy or any other company, of course it is in the contract, however you will surprise to pay 120% more than you expected from fix rate in summer time.
We just switch to fix rate company, it is too late after pay 2 bill from avg 800.00 to 1800.00 month. (from 0.07 to 0.19). It is big wow. Christmas gift done for this year.

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