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TXU Energy Shares Tips for Managing Your Household Electricity Budget

Promotes Understanding Your Bill, Taking Control with Interactive Energy Savings Solutions, and Continued Conservation Efforts to Battle Extreme Outdoor Temperatures

9/21/2011

You have the power to control your household electricity budget, and TXU Energy can show you how. As Texas consumers receive their last bills from the extremely hot summer, the company is promoting conservation and good habits that can help customers cut back their electricity consumption and costs any time of year.

The company advises consumers of three main areas that can help them reduce their electricity usage and bills. These include: knowing and understanding your electricity bill, taking control of your consumption with interactive, do-it-yourself (DIY) tools, and watching out for two things that can outweigh your conservation efforts: the weather and the type of electricity plan you choose.

Knowing and Understanding Your Bill
Your electricity bill will show you details like how much energy you consumed in the previous billing cycle and the rate you paid per kWh. Many providers also provide historic consumption information on your bill, so you can see how much electricity you use per month and what you’re spending on it. Taking this a step further, TXU Energy offers you access to your bill via the first iPhone® app and the first optimized mobile Web site for smartphones for retail electricity customers in Texas. Both provide customers with billing and usage information.

Taking Control of Your Consumption with Interactive Household Tools
TXU Energy offers a number of solutions that give you the opportunity and time to cut back your usage and change your at-home electricity habits to conserve electricity and monthly budget. Some of these include:

  • The TXU Energy MyEnergy DashboardSM which shows your electricity usage and costs to date in your billing cycle. If you have a smart meter, it provides even more information, such as an estimated forecast of what your cost will be by the end of the billing cycle – before you receive your bill. It’s free to all TXU Energy customers.
  • The BrightenSM iThermostat, an energy savings solution from TXU Energy, empowers you with hands-on access to your real-time heating ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) settings from virtually anywhere via an interactive Web portal and a mobile website for smartphones.
  • For DIY enthusiasts, TXU Energy offers the BrightenSM Personal Energy Advisor, a free tool that provides personalized recommendations via online tips and how-to videos that can help you avoid wasting energy via air leaks, faulty thermostats, insufficient insulation, water heater settings, HVAC inefficiency and more.
  • Also for the DIY-inclined, TXU Energy offers the BrightenSM Online Energy Store, where you can purchase specialty items that enhance at-home energy efficiency, including a wide variety of smart strips, energy monitors, compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs and more.


Conserving Electricity: You Versus the Weather and Your Plan Type
TXU Energy notes that dialing back the A/C and making efforts to turn off lights and other things to conserve will always help lower your bill versus using more electricity. But, there are two factors that can drive your bill up and offset your work to conserve: the outdoor temperature and the type of electricity plan you choose.

To combat extreme outdoor temperatures, the company offers the following tips for conserving electricity during the heat of summer -- and all year long:

  • In summer months, dial up the A/C to 85 or higher when you’re away from home and 75 or higher (78 if you can stand it) when you’re there; dial it up a few more degrees at night in summer.
  • Avoid leaving on ceiling fans and lights in rooms you’re not using.
  • Be sure to run the dishwasher and washing machine with full loads to avoid wasting electricity via multiple unnecessary loads, and clean the lint trap frequently in the dryer.
  • Replace air conditioner filters regularly, and be sure your windows and doors are sealed to avoid air leaks.
  • Ensure that the chimney damper is completely closed any time you are not using the fireplace to avoid cool or warm air rising through the chimney.
  • Plug home electronics into smart strips to avoid “phantom load” when TVs, computers and other devices are turned off.
    For more tips on conservation go to txu.com/energytips.

The company also cautions consumers to consider the risks of variable rate electricity plans, which some providers have increased in price by more than 100 percent in some cases as recently as August. Because of pricing increases, consumers on this type of plan may not see cost savings even when they work diligently to conserve. TXU Energy does not offer variable rate plans and provides more information on the risks associated with some of these plans at txu.com/novariable.

“In Texas, unless you’re on a variable rate electricity plan, no one has more control over your electricity usage and costs than you do,” said Michael Grasso, chief marketing officer, TXU Energy, speaking directly to consumers statewide. “Although you can’t control the weather, you can control the choices you make in electricity plans and your at-home electricity habits. You can also extend your conservation efforts using innovative tools that make it easier than ever to dial back your consumption.”

The company also cautions you to pay attention when your contract term ends with your provider because some retailers will move you to variable rate electricity plans once your term expires. To date, TXU Energy is the only major retailer in Texas that doesn’t have variable rate electricity plans.

About TXU Energy
TXU Energy is a market-leading competitive retailer that provides electricity and related services to approximately 2 million electricity customers in Texas. TXU Energy offers a variety of innovative products and solutions, allowing both its residential and business customers to choose options that best meet their needs, including exceptional customer service, competitively priced electricity service plans, innovative energy efficiency options, renewable energy programs and other electricity-related products and services. Visit txu.com for more information about TXU Energy. REP #10004.

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