Advantages of Texas Electric Deregulation

The energy market was deregulated in Texas as of 2002. This means that Dallas now has the power to choose your own energy provider. By choosing your own provider, you can be certain to get cheap electricity, since the utility company is no longer able to set the price to whatever they want. The market is open for competitors to vie for your customer ship. Having a deregulated energy market also benefits you in a few other ways.

 

Switching to a new Retail Energy Provider (REP) can get you in on some extra benefits or advantages. The biggest advantage is getting cheap electricity. When REPs compete for your business, the average rates for electricity drop. Some REPs may also offer introductory offers that will get you an even lower rate to start out. All REPs offer different plans with varying contract lengths, rates, and options. Renewable energy is one of these possible options, and you can look for plans that feature partial or full renewable energy to power your home. You may also find a REP that offers loyalty programs. These programs offer extra incentives to you depending on how long you are a customer. You may receive gift cards to local restaurants, discounts on your energy bill, or even chances to get a dream vacation. In an unregulated market, there is no reason for a provider to offer these kinds of deals because you would have nowhere else to go.

 

Even if a sole provider did offer a rewards program, if their customer service was nothing remarkable, you may not even care what the rewards are. In this deregulated market, if you don’t like your energy provider, you can switch to a new one. This is another point where the power to choose your provider really stands out. Sometimes, an extraordinary customer service will outweigh a slightly higher rate for electricity, but you could still conceivably find low Dallas electricity rates and great service. The key to it all is shopping around.

 

Shop Dallas Electricity helps you through the selection process by narrowing down your choices based on your search criteria. Whether you’re looking for a low rate, renewable energy, or a fixed or variable rate plan, we can help you get the best plan for you. When you choose a new provider or plan, you don’t have to worry about losing service while the transition is made. The Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT) ensures that once you select a switch date, your service will continue uninterrupted as you switch from one provider to another.

Tips for Electric Savings during the Hot Summers

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Summer brings warm temperatures, pool parties, barbecues, and a lot of energy use. You can cut back on that energy use and still keep cool by following these simple tips. Some tips will cost nothing to implement, others suggest you replace outdated appliances to maximize energy savings. All in all, these tips will save you energy and money in the long run.

  • Upgrade your AC — If your AC is more than 20 years old, it is not nearly as efficient as it could be. Upgrading your AC to a newer, more efficient model will save a lot of electricity in the coming years. Be sure you get a unit that is appropriately sized for your home; oversized units do not cool your home any faster, but they do use a lot more electricity.
  • Cooking — Use the smallest cooking appliance to get the job done. Ovens use a lot of electricity, and they also add more heat to your home, which in turn causes your AC to work harder. Use microwaves or crock pots to cut back on energy use and heat gain. If you do need to use the oven, consider baking in the morning when it’s
    usually cooler.
  • Thermostat — Installing a programmable thermostat can help cut down on energy use throughout the day. These thermostats let you set what temperatures you want for different parts of the day. You can have a nice cool home starting just before you get home from work, let the system shut down overnight, cool down in the morning, and shut down while you’re at work.
  • Sunlight — Keep sunlight from overheating your home by closing curtains or treating your windows with a low-e film. You could also consider planting trees on the south and west sides of your home. They will shade your home during the summer, but let light through in the winter when you need the extra warmth.
  • Fans — Using fans in conjunction with your AC will allow you to set the thermostat a bit higher, as the fans create a wind chill when blowing directly on you. On cooler days, open the windows and use fans instead of the AC.
  • Water Use — Lower your water heater from 140° to 120°F and use less hot water while showering. Either turn the heat down or take shorter showers. You could also consider installing a tankless water heater, which is far more efficient.
  • Lights — Old incandescent bulbs have been called “heaters with light as a byproduct.” These old bulbs let off a lot of heat and consume a lot of electricity compared to CFLs or LEDs. LEDs are 80-90% more efficient than incandescent bulbs and they emit much less heat, which will help keep your home cooler.
  • AC Service — Tune up your AC every 6-12 months by having a professional service it for you. They will keep it running efficiently, ensuring your home stays cool while using as little electricity as possible. You should also clean or replace the air filter every 1-3 months to keep airflow at its maximum.

 

  • Ductwork — Ensure that the ducts and pipes for your AC are well sealed. Any cracks or gaps will let the chilled air escape throughout your home’s infrastructure, which will keep it from cooling efficiently.
  • Go Outside — Spend time outside and leave the AC off. This will keep you from using electricity in your home and allow you to soak up some rays and enjoy the outdoors. Take a dip in a pool to help keep yourself cool and grill outdoors to keep from adding excess heat to your home.

As the days heat up, so do the Dallas electric prices. You have the power to choose a Dallas electricity provider that gives you the cheapest electric rates. Switching to a new provider before the temperatures rise will ensure you get a good low rate for your electricity. Shop Dallas Electricity will help you sort through the providers and plans available to you, so you can pick the best plan for your home.

Electricity Tips Simplified

There are a large number of ways you can cut your home energy usage. Cutting back on energy usage saves you money and is good for the environment. Many of the tips we’ll share with you today don’t even require you to spend any additional money to upgrade your home. Something as simple as moving a piece of furniture can actually yield energy saving benefits!

 

  • Consolidating your entertainment center into a single outlet with a power strip will allow you to shut all of the electronics in it off at the same time. Electronics drain electricity even when they are off, but by switching the power strip off, you will stop the flow of electricity to these devices.
  • Switching to more energy efficient lighting like CFL or LED bulbs will save 80-90% of the energy used in lighting.
  • When looking to replace electronics or appliances, look for Energy Star certified products. Energy Star products are 20-30% more efficient than other products of the same type.
  • If you print a lot, consider getting refillable cartridges. They will save on waste and refilling the ink yourself is much cheaper than buying new cartridges.
  • Only run full loads of clothes and dish washers. They use about the same amount of energy for small loads as they do for large ones.
  • Find and seal any leaks in pipes or air ducts. These leaks can have a major impact on your energy use, regardless of how small they may be.
  • If you have a small yard with grass that’s not very thick, consider using an electric mower. You’ll save on gas purchases and eliminate a good portion of carbon emissions.
  • Clean the condenser coils on your refrigerator. Clean coils allow the compressor to work more efficiently.
  • Clean or replace the air vents on your air conditioning and heating systems every 1-3 months. Clogged vents reduce airflow and make the system work harder.
  • Ensure furniture is not blocking any air vents in your home. Blocked vents make it take longer for your air conditioning and heat to make your home comfortable.
  • Close off vents and shut doors to unused rooms that you don’t want climate controlled.
  • If you have children, consider installing occupancy sensors in their bedrooms and playrooms. Children may not always shut the lights off when they leave a room, but an occupancy sensor will do it for them after they leave the room for a time.
  • Use reusable containers to carry food or drinks with you to work to help cut back on waste.
  • Whenever possible, use electronic bill paying methods. Some Dallas electricity providers offer cheap rates on plans with electronic payment.
  • Lower your water heater from the factory default of 140°F to 120°F to save a good deal of electricity.
  • Take care of chores like clothes and dish washing, vacuuming, and meal prep early in the morning. These chores can add to the heat in your home, which will make it more uncomfortable if done at night in the summer.
  • Use the smallest appliance necessary to cook food. Ovens use significantly more electricity than microwaves, toasters, or slow cookers.
  • When cooking on the stovetop, make sure to use a pot or pan that completely covers the heating element. Not only is this more efficient, but it can prevent ceramic element covers from breaking.
  • On particularly warm days, consider grilling outside to keep from overheating your home.
  • Use a bucket or trash container to collect rainwater for use in gardening or cleaning.

 

There are still a myriad of other ways to reduce your energy usage. While saving energy can save you money, so too can switching your energy provider.Shop Dallas Electricity will help you compare several energy companies at once, so you get the best deal on electricity. You have the power to choose an energy plan that fits your needs, including plans with e-billing discounts or renewable energy.

Energy Saving Lutron Sensor

Saving energy is a primary concern for a lot of people these days. Cutting back on energy use will help us globally, environmentally, and economically. A sustainable living will prolong the life of the environment. We implement several methods to conserve energy, like cutting back on air conditioner use, weather stripping our homes, and shutting off lights when we leave a room. Fortunately, with the advancements in technology, the last option can be automatic. Motions detecting light switches have been around for a long time, but they have only recently been used in common indoor applications.

Today, you can find motion light switches in public restrooms, office rooms,  outside our homes (security lights), and frozen food sections of markets. These switches turn the lights on as soon as a person enters the room and shuts them off after a period of inactivity, usually a couple minutes. Sometimes, this can lead to being left in the dark if you don’t move enough while in the room. Fortunately, there is a solution to the premature darkening and the wasted minutes of energy after leaving.

Lutron created the Maestro occupancy sensor switch based on this motion sensing technology, but with some improvements. The switch’s basic functions are still to turn on when you enter and turn off when you leave. However, this switch is configurable for several different situations. The switch can be set to detect high levels of motion, such as walking, or low levels of motion, such as typing on a keyboard. This means that even though you may not be moving much, the lights won’t go out on you. What’s more is the switch will automatically turn the lights off as soon as you leave? The Maestro sensor can also be set with a dimmer and a vacancy mode. The vacancy mode means you need  to press the switch to turn the lights off, but they will turn themselves off when you leave. This is good for families with pets.

These occupancy sensors are a great way to save on electricity, especially in homes where lights get left on frequently. Installing one of these light switches takes about 15 minutes and can save up to 50% on your lighting energy usage. They also monitor the ambient light level in your home, so they don’t turn on when there is plenty of ambient light, but it will learn to automatically turn on at certain light levels if you tend to turn the lights on when there is still some ambient light.

In addition to changing the light switches, changing your lights will save you money as well. Upgrading from old incandescent light bulbs to more efficient LEDs will save 80-90% on your lighting electricity usage. And signing up with a Dallas electricity provider that offers cheap electricity rates will also get you a huge savings. Shop Dallas Electricity will give you the power to choose your electricity provider and the energy plan you want for your home or office.

What is an Electricity Facts Label?

When choosing a Retail Energy Provider (REP), you will find that each REP offers several different plans. These plans differ based on contract length, green energy, promotions, and price. To find out exactly what each plan offers, you need to look at the Electricity Facts Label, or EFL. The EFL is more or less the “fine print” of your energy plan. In looking for the best Dallas electricity prices, be sure to read the EFL to ensure that the plan will meet your needs. The EFL gives you the power to choose a plan perfectly suited to your home or business.

Every REP is required to have an EFL on their plans. They lay out in plain terms how much you will pay per kilowatt hour (kWh), what fees are associated with the plan, how long the contract lasts, and whether there is a penalty for breaking the contract. Contract lengths can be month to month, which is a variable rate plan, or they can run between 3 and 36 months, typically. Variable rate plans can have rate changes every month, based on supply and demand of electricity. This means that if the supply is high, you will likely pay a slightly lower rate than the previous month, but if the supply is low or interrupted by something (weather, power generation facility issues, etc), the price could increase from the previous month. Fixed rate plans lock in your rate for the duration of your contract. Regardless of how the market conditions change, your rate will remain where it is, for better or worse.

Additional fees, such as the cost of transmitting electricity will be included in the EFL. Each Transmission and Distribution Service Provider (TDSP) assesses a cost per kilowatt hour for getting the electricity to you. This rate is usually lower as you use more electricity over the course of a month. Think of it as like buying in bulk; you get a discount on the larger volume. TDSPs each manage a particular region, so where you live will determine who your TDSP is, unlike REPs, which you can choose one of several in an area. This transmission charges are broken down by energy use per kWh, delivery per kWh, and delivery per month. It’s also possible that you’ll see a “Base Charge” if you use less than 2000 kWh per month, but this is included in the average transmission costs.

Other fees that could be assessed include late fees, disconnection/reconnection fees, and third party payment fees, if you use a check cashing store or bill payment center. The EFL will also tell you your contract length and explains how even in a fixed rate plan, your rate can change due to changes in TDSP charges or legislation. You will also see a section telling you how much, if any, of your electricity is generated from renewable sources like wind or solar power. Finally, all contact information for the REP will be listed, should you have any questions or concerns about the plans. Reading your EFL carefully will ensure you choose the best plan with the cheapest electricity rates and aren’t surprised by fees that may appear.