Problem is, waiting a long time to change your filter makes your HVAC system less efficient and costs you more in electricity. Dirt and neglect can even cause your expensive HVAC unit to die an untimely death, said Maria Vargas, spokeswoman for the EPA’s Energy Star program. Instead, spend a little more to get a reusable filter than you can simply hose off when it gets clogged up with dust and other particles.
But this year is different. According to the Lower Colorado River Authority, a nonprofit public utility in Central Texas, the 10 months from October 2010 through July 2011 have been the driest for that period since 1895, when the state began keeping rainfall records. Without rain, temperatures hit record levels in June and July, which were the hottest months on record statewide. As of August 5, Austin hit 100+ degrees 52 times this summer.
Electricity cannot be stored as easily as gas, it is produced at the exact moment of demand. All of the factors of supply and demand will therefore have an immediate impact on the price of electricity on the spot market. In addition to production costs, electricity prices are set by supply and demand.[120] However, some fundamental drivers are the most likely to be considered.

"Vampire" electronics, like computers and cell phone chargers, continue to draw power even when turned off, so unplug them. Many modern electronics operate in "sleep" mode when turned off; this is a low power setting that allows the device to turn on and be used quickly. Unplugging these devices eliminates this unneeded power drain. You may want to plug such devices into a single power strip, which can then be turned off or unplugged, making disconnecting multiple electronics easier. Some power strips also continue to draw power when turned off, but it's still easier to pull out the single plug of the power strip rather than each individual device.


We carefully screen Texas electricity providers in your area. Then, we list electricity rates and plans from top providers in a user-friendly format on our website, so you can compare the information. We handle the complex concerns and considerations, so you don’t have to. With our assistance, you no longer need to track down different electricity companies, rates, and plans, because we provide all the information you need to choose the best provider.
Many of us here in the Pacific Northwest, where the weather is often moderate all year round, don’t even have air conditioning. So tips like “Seal up the house” don’t work for us. If the weather is hot but not scorching, even those in other places may not need air conditioning. What works for that situation is to keep the windows closed during the daytime, then open them wide to get crossdrafts and the cooler air at night. My house is designed so that if we do that, it never gets above 80 degrees indoors even on the rare days that it’s 95 outside.
Anyway, the $800 Whirlpool Gold we replaced it with was a peice of junk and its Energy Star rating was a joke. We had to basically wash the dishes before they went in and then we had to heat the water going into the unit by running the faucet until the water was hot (per the manual!). Our water bill actually went up $5 a month. We got rid of that dishwasher and replaced it with a $2k Miele, which works fine, but we have to scrape the food which we didn’t have to do with the old Kenmore.
Your electric water heater draws more electricity than almost anything else in your house. Take advantage of most electric companies' off-peak reduced rates by putting your electric heater on a timer that turns off at 6:00 a.m., for example, and clicks back on at 6:00 p.m. Most heaters are big enough and have enough insulation to maintain adequate hot water throughout the day without being switched on. But for those occasions when you want to take a leisurely midday bath, just press a button and it instantly turns the water heater back on.
EC&M 's Top 50 Electrical Contractors listing was established in 2000 by sister publication CEE News to honor excellence in electrical contracting in the construction industry. The Top 50 list showcases the top electrical contracting companies in the nation and acts as a gauge by which other companies measure themselves. To give our readers an inside view into these large companies, we continue our mission of surveying the nation’s largest electrical contracting companies and ranking them by total revenue related to electrical and datacom services.
As a result, the cost to cool our house is getting obscene. We could dial the temp up to 80 degrees, put a kiddie pool in the living room, and buy some Misty Mates from HSN, but I'm not willing to go there. I work from home, and I won't be miserable to save a few bucks. I'm also not going to buy a new refrigerator just to save $72 over the course of a year, install a programmable thermostat when ours works fine, or purchase a new washing machine with energy-efficient motors and pumps. If I needed new appliances, sure, I'd check out energy-efficient models, but ours are all sufficient.
Solar panels can lead to thousands of dollars in electricity savings over the course of 30 years, because you’re generating your own power instead of buying it all from your utility. If you have time-of-use rates, the credits you get for sending excess solar electricity back to the grid will depend on the time of day. If your solar panels are producing lots of electricity at peak hours, you’ll receive credits at the peak hour rate, which you can use later on. However, that also means that you’ll be credited at the lower rate for electricity you send back during off peak hours.
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