Invest in Your Energy Future by Making Energy Conscious Decisions
Step 1: Start by Knowing What Appliances Draw the Most Electricity
Your first step is to identify the gas guzzlers in your home. The usual suspects include:
- Your HVAC system: Newer models are more energy-efficient, but the golden oldies are heavy on power usage. Make sure that your HVAC system is serviced at least once a year to keep it in peak running order.
- The water heater: Again, newer models tend to be more efficient. The older water tank models keep the water heated all day. This constant heating leads to a lot of wasted energy. It usually pays to switch to a gas water heater. These heat the water as and when needed.
- Your pool pump: We don’t give it much thought, but having the pool pump on all the time drains a lot of power. Most pumps can be set to switch off and on at predetermined intervals. Not running the pump full-time can save you a significant amount.
You can find out the basic power usage of different devices online. This will give you a rough idea of how much each appliance uses. If you want a more accurate view, an electricity monitoring device is going to come in handy for you.
Step 2: Implement Energy Saving Tips
Here are some tips to get you started:
- Appliances that are on standby do draw a small amount of power. It’s better to unplug appliances that you’re not using.
- We’ve already said that the HVAC system must be serviced once a year. In between services, check the air filters and evaporator coil every three months or so. If these are clogged or dirty, your HVAC won’t run as efficiently.
- Use the HVAC system wisely. Where possible, switch to ceiling fans, open windows, and use natural sunlight to keep temperatures inside more even. When this is not possible, put your thermostat on a timer system so that it only operates when someone will be home.
- Check the insulation in the house. Ineffective insulation makes it more challenging to maintain an even temperature inside. Check the insulation in the roof as more energy is lost through it. If you replace the roof, consider more energy-efficient tiles.
- A lot of heat escapes through the windows too. Get them double-glazed to make them more energy-efficient. Also, ensure that the caulking around the frame is in good condition and that any gaps are plugged.
- The right window treatments can further slash energy bills by providing extra insulation on the windows.
- Inspect your air ducts regularly. Getting these insulated can prevent a lot of energy being wasted. Again, plug any leaks that you find, where necessary.
- Consider taking advantage of all the Texas sunshine by installing solar panels. Or, at the least, install a solar water heater. These will pay for themselves in just a few years thanks to the energy you save.
- Use energy-efficient lightbulbs in your home. Also switch off lights in rooms you’re not using, just like your mother always told you to do. It’s only going to save a little bit of energy, but every little bit counts here.
Step 3: Start Using Smart Appliances
Now that you have a better understanding of appliances that use a lot of energy, consider replacing them with more energy-efficient models and smart appliances. Smart appliance not only offer the convenience of being able to control settings from your phone they can also save a bundle on energy costs.
Shop and Compare Electric Companies in Texas
Deregulation and the Power to Choose Your Electricity Provider
Deregulation in the energy market basically means that consumers have the ability to chose their provider, whereas people who live in areas that are regulated all use the same provider.
The process of electricity deregulation began in Texas in 1999. It wasn’t until 2002 that Texas Senate Bill 7 was passed officially. This bill meant that consumers had the power to choose which electricity companies in Dallas and the rest of Texas they wanted to use. 85% of Texans are now able to choose which company they would like to buy energy from.
The upside of deregulation was that consumers have more control over what they spend on electricity. When searching for a Dallas electricity provider it pays to shop around, there are many electric companies with competitive rates, companies that offer no deposit, promotions, and rewards. Shopping and comparing rates can help you save a bundle on your electricity bill