Get up to date on the latest money saving tips, and find out if what you think you know about saving energy is fact or fiction.

Energy Saving Tips

Memorial Day Weekend: Sales Tax Holiday on Energy Efficiency Products


EnergyStarLogoAttention Texas shoppers: there’s good news this weekend for anyone in the market for an energy efficiency product.

The Texas Comptroller’s office has announced a sales tax holiday through May 25th on certain energy efficiency products. Those products that qualify will have an “Energy Star” logo affixed to them. The tax holiday begins at 12:01 a.m. (after midnight) on Saturday, May 23.

You can purchase any number of qualifying items under the sales tax holiday — and there’s also no requirement for an exemption certificate. Qualifying products include:

  • Air conditioners priced at $6,000 or less
  • Refrigerators priced at $2,000 or less
  • Ceiling fans
  • Incandescent and fluorescent light bulbs
  • Clothes washers
  • Dishwashers
  • Dehumidifiers
  • Programmable thermostats with Energy Star label.

The Energy Star logo may appear on the appliance, the packaging or the Energy Guide label. The logo means the product meets strict energy efficiency guidelines, set by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy. Click here for more information.

New Video: How to shop for electricity in Texas


Are your electric bills gobbling up your checking account? Maybe it’s time to switch power companies.

And is here to help.

As a special Thanksgiving treat, check out this new video to walk Texans through the electricity buying process.

Refrigerators and freezers operate most efficiently when full.


If nothing else, keeping them stocked with bottles of water will make a big difference.

Let the sun in.


Especially in the winter, the sun’s energy can have a noticeable affect on the temperature in your home, particularly from windows facing south and west.  Keep your blinds and drapes open during the day.

Only use one refrigerator or freezer.


You can spend up to $120 in electricity per year using a second refrigerator or freezer. If you want to use a second fridge or freezer during holidays or special occasions, turn it on one to two days before you need it.

Run cold water for food disposal.


Hot water requires more energy to warm the water. Cold water saves energy and solidifies grease to move it more easily through pipes.

Lower the temperature on your electric water heater.


Lowering the temperature by 10 degrees will save a lot of energy, and you likely won’t notice the difference.

Use an outdoor grill or slow cooker.


A grill is a money-saving alternative to using a standard oven and range. In the summer especially, ovens heat up the house and make your air conditioner work harder.

Use a clothesline.


A clothesline, a solar dryer, is an easy way to save on energy usage. Then, if necessary, use your dryer’s fluff cycle during off peak times to reduce stiffness.

Avoid unnecessary energy usage during peak hours, 3pm-7pm.


During the hot summer months, electricity usage is highest 3pm-7pm. Try to avoid using energy that could be put off for a couple of hours like running the dishwasher, or using your washer and dryer .

Adjust the brightness on your monitor


The brighter a monitor, the more energy it uses. A monitor’s brightness can be reduced dramatically if used in a dark room, for example.

Position lights properly


Try to illuminate the entire activity area without creating distracting glares or shadows. To do this, position your light source closer to the area you want lit. This saves energy by not over-lighting an unused area.

Turn down the LCD's backlight


By turning down the backlight, you’ll lower power consumption, but also make the TV less bright. We find that we get the best image quality when we turn down the backlight significantly.

Use fans with your air conditioner


Fans help reduce energy costs by circulating the cool air from your air conditioner. This allows you to raise the temperature on the thermostat and still be comfortable. Use oscillating fans for greater circulation.

Don't peek in the oven


Resist the urge to open the oven door while baking. Every time you peek, the temperature drops 25° F and requires additional energy to bring the temperature back up.