Getting ready for Triad season

1 November 2022 marks the start of the FINAL Triad season as we know it: reduce your consumption during a Triad and you'll make savings; increase your consumption during a Triad and it could impact your budget.

Make the most of potential savings whilst the opportunity is there. This is likely to be the last time you can use Triads to make a significant difference to your Transmission Network Use of System (TNUoS) charges. Due to the Targeted Charging Review, after February 2023 the opportunity to benefit from Triad avoidance will be greatly reduced as the percentage of influenceable costs will be much lower. You can find out more about that in our Targeted Charging Review blog.

But for now - what are Triads, what impact do they have on your bills, and how can EDF support you to make savings?


What are Triads?

To manage the huge demand on the network over the most energy intensive period of the year (November to February), the National Grid imposes a charge: Transmission Network Use of System (TNUoS). This is used to finance the maintenance of the UK’s electricity grid to ensure future supply.

This charge is based on your business’ energy consumption during a “Triad” period.

Triads are the top three half-hourly peaks of national energy demand across the grid, separated by ten clear calendar days between 1 November and 1 March. National Grid confirms these peaks after the season, at the end of March.

Typically, Triads occur when high business demand meets the domestic mid/late afternoon tea-time period, causing an overall spike in energy use.


How Triads impact your energy bill

Impacting customers with half-hourly meters, the charge is proportional to a business’ energy use over the Triad periods (the three half hours of highest demand) and is linked to their location. This is where you can make or break your budget: if a business doesn’t consume electricity in the three Triad periods, they don’t pay HH (half-hourly) TNUoS charges for the entire financial year.

As standard, we include a charge for 85% of your maximum demand figure for TNUoS on our customer bills – this helps to spread the cost over the year. After the final Triads are announced, we issue the March invoices to show the Triad periods and make any reconciliations.


Where can you see your transmission charge?

Your Transmission costs appears under the Transmission and agent charges on your invoice.

Here in the green box is an example of a monthly TNUoS contribution. This is calculated by taking 85% of that month’s maximum demand and multiplying it by the relevant zonal charge.

Here in the blue box, we show the TNUoS annual reconciliation (which you’ll see on your March bills). It shows the confirmed Triad dates and times, your consumption in that period, along with the line loss adjustment factor and your charge rate.

This is where we calculate the total charges for your TNUoS, what you have paid us over the year, and what the final reconciliation is.


The Triad challenge and how to make savings

To mitigate against Triad costs, companies and suppliers work hard to predict when they’ll be so they can turn down (or off) their energy usage during those periods.

Due to the increasing use of Triad avoidance schemes as well as flexibility solutions, such as Demand Side Response and the growing use of renewables, they are getting harder to predict.

To support our customers, we have a team of energy experts with complex modelling and forecasting tools designed to determine when Triads will likely be.

    Market Insight

    Our Market Insight service has been designed to help larger organisations make the right decisions. As an EDF customer, you have free access to quality data and expert analysis to help you control and manage Triads.

    Our market experts use a range of complex factors to predict when Triads are most likely to occur, enabling you to significantly reduce your transmission costs.

    • Dedicated dashboard with Daily Triad Probability reports
    • Triad warning saving calculator
    • Historical data report from last season
    • Set your personal preferences for alerts
    • Access non-energy cost Monitor report

    Triads service

    Triad status reports are issued Monday to Friday during the period November to February, excluding the Christmas holidays. They are issued either via SMS or email and are assigned a risk category:

    • Low Risk: A Triad is not predicted for the day
    • Medium Risk: Based on the information available there is some risk that a Triad may occur
    • High Risk: Based on the information available there is a significant likelihood that a Triad will occur

    For further detail you can login or register to our Market Insight page.

    Some tips for reacting to Triads:

    Triads tend to happen in the late afternoon / early evening. Here are some ideas for how you can reduce your energy usage at those times to help manage the impact of Triads on your TNUoS costs:

    • Look at occupancy during likely Triad times. Can you move staff around so that you can close off or shut down certain areas, reducing cost from lighting and heating?
    • Could you reduce heating during these times?
    • Are cleaners coming into your premises at the end of the day? Could this be changed to a different time of day (such as early morning or later evening) to reduce the amount you’re using during Triads?
    • Can you switch to on-site generation?