DALLAS – September 7 is Texas Energy Savings Day, a day dedicated to helping Texans save money on their electricity bill! Everyone uses electricity, and often many of us are overpaying for electricity without even realizing it. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the prices of electricity in July jumped 15.2% from a year ago, indicating the largest increase since 2006. While we can’t control electricity prices, there are small things that can be done to lower your energy bill.
Look at energy bills
It’s important to understand how your electricity bill works. Compare your usage history to previous years, understand the current charges and rates, and learn how many kilowatts per hour you normally use. Then call other companies to compare rate charges and find the one that best meets your budget.
P.S. One kWh is the same as charging your phone for two hours per day over the course of one month, running the microwave for two minutes every day for a month, or cooling a room with one medium window air conditioning unit for one hour.
Make changes within your home to reduce energy consumption and increase savings
Cut out ‘phantom energy’ or ‘vampire loads.’ This is basically anything that continuously energy even when turned off. This could be your tv, computer, or kitchen appliances for example. Use power strips with electronics and turn them off when not in use.
You could also make the switch from regular light bulbs to LED bulbs. Although they might cost more upfront, LED bulbs to use about 75% less energy than regular bulbs do.
For additional home energy-saving tips, visit the Public Utility Commission of Texas website.
Consider the following Air Conditioning & Heating tips for your home
Change your Air Filter Routinely: Air filters should be changed every 3-6 months. This can vary depending on the age of your unit or if there are any pets in the home. Clogged or dirty filters reduce the efficiency of your air conditioning system and force the unit to use more energy to be effective.
Get Air Duct Sealing: Leaking air ducts lead to inefficient heating and cooling system. Air duct sealing closes the gaps and increases the amount of air circulating in your home by reducing air loss. Look for high energy bills, rooms that are difficult to cool/warm, or reduced air capacity coming from air vents.
Install a Programmable Thermostat: Programmable thermostats have many features that are beneficial to energy savings. These thermostats allow for optimized programming that will help you run your unit a couple of degrees higher while you’re not home but keep you comfortable when you are. They often offer remote access that lets you monitor and control temperatures from anywhere. They can also offer information on your HVAC energy consumption patterns. The heating and cooling systems in our homes make up a big portion of our electric bill. So, having this accessibility gives you more control over how much energy you’re using.
Consider Upgrading your Air Conditioning & Heating System: At its peak, an HVAC system with good supporting measures such as a properly programmed thermostat, sealed ductwork, and good insulation, can last for years! However, if your current system is between 10 and 15 years old, it may be a good time to get a system evaluation. There have been many improvements in Heating & Cooling technology and upgrading to a new, energy-efficient HVAC unit can be a good investment. Upgrading your HVAC system can provide you comfort control, improved indoor air quality, and comes with extended warranties. An HVAC upgrade can reduce your energy consumption.
Sign up for a Maintenance Plan: If the a/c unit is currently working or you are not interested in upgrading, consider signing up for a maintenance plan for the HVAC system such as our Freedom Family Plan. If your home’s HVAC system is dirty, the unit overworks increasing the energy consumption. Routine maintenance solves this by indoor air quality, increasing energy efficiency, and warding off repairs and replacements. You can make sure the HVAC unit is clean and running efficiently for $15 a month per system.
These are just some simple steps that can be followed to reduce your electric usage. Understanding your electric bill, implementing energy-saving measures, and taking care of your investments like a new air conditioning and heating system for your home with maintenance tune-ups are little changes that can add up to big savings.
Visit https://www.eia.gov/consumption/ to learn more about energy consumption today.