Tips for Reducing Energy Costs
(AUSTIN) -- As summer dredges on and July turns to August, temperatures in north Texas continue to hover around 100 degrees and, unfortunately, relief is still months away. Many citizens of Senate District Two have written or called my office with concerns over high energy costs.
Many organizations and agencies, including the Department of Energy, offer tips on managing your power usage and saving on energy costs. Some of these include:
- When you're air conditioning, set your thermostat to 78. Anything lower will increase your cost by approximately 5% for every degree below 78. And if you're going to be away from home, try setting your thermostat even higher.
- Use kitchen, bath, and other ventilating fans wisely. In just one hour, these fans can pull out a houseful of warmed or cooled air. Turn fans off as soon as they have done the job.
- During the cooling season, keep the window coverings closed during the day to prevent the sun from heating your home.
- Install individual room controls to heat and cool rooms only when you use them.
- Have your heating and cooling systems serviced once a year to ensure peak operational efficiency.
- Use energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs --especially in fixtures that operate more than two hours a day. They cost more initially but use 75 percent less electricity and last about ten times longer than incandescent bulbs.
- It's always a good idea to turn off unused lights - you'll save energy and money. But it's especially smart when it's hot outside. Lights, appliances and tools generate heat and make your air conditioner work harder - and that costs you money.
- Enable "power management" on all computers and make sure to turn them off at night. A laptop computer uses up to 90% less energy than bigger desktop models.
- Always buy ENERGY STAR qualified appliances and equipment - they're up to 40% more efficient. Find rebates and incentives in your area.
For those of you that use TXU Energy, TXU has a number of ways to help out those struggling with energy bills. Customers who are designated as low-income, who are ill or disabled and who are 62 years of age or older are eligible for more flexible payment plans through September 30. If you feel you may qualify, call 800-242-9113 and inform them of your needs. For customers at least 62 years of age or with an electric bill payment history of no more than one late payment during the prior 12-months period, you can call the above number to request a deposit waiver.
The above tips have been compiled from www.fypower.org and the Department of Energy. For further help in reducing energy costs, call your local energy provider or search for tips online.
As always, for questions, comments or help, feel free to contact my office and my staff or I will be happy to help you.
To contact Sen. Deuell about the legislative process, contact the Capitol Office at (512) 463-0102 or mail to Sen. Bob Deuell, Texas Senate, P.O. Box 12068, Austin, TX 78711. The website for the Texas Senate is www.senate.state.tx.us. The e-mail address for Sen. Deuell is: firstname.lastname@example.org.