Record-Setting Electricity Demand in Texas This Summer

The Texas Summer is Hot & Loooooong….
School may be back in session, but that doesn’t mean that fall weather has arrived in Texas. Summer here is stubborn as a mule, and it’s still hot as all get out. But saying this summer has been hot is an understatement. Our state grid operator, The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), reported monthly record electricity demand in June, July, and August! This demand was driven by high air conditioning loads during the hottest days of the summer.

In other words, if you haven’t been outside enjoying one of the many beautiful swimming holes or frying an egg on the sidewalk, you’ve been hibernating inside with the AC cranked down to avoid the heat. You’ve been contributing to the record-breaking power demands in Texas, and like a broken record, summer after summer, you’re thinking “My electric bill is so high, I need to stop turning over my paycheck to [insert your utility company here]!”

What can you do to make your bills lower – before adding solar?
Even though we are in the business to sell solar, we recognize that there is low-hanging fruit when it comes to reducing your energy bills. A few suggestions to consider:

  • Ensure that you have proper weatherstripping and sealed ductwork
  • Install adequate attic insulation
  • Move to LED lighting, especially for high usage light fixturesReplace old refrigerators, especially that old beer fridge in the garage
  • Replace your single speed pool pump with a variable speed modelWhenever the need arises to replace an A/C unit – move to a variable speed model

I want to consider solar. How much do I need?
Ask most any Texan without a solar pv system how high their electric bill is and they will all pretty much tell you the same thing: “Too high!” It’s a frustrating feeling, especially since you own your home, and yet must perpetually ‘rent’ your electricity at rates that are beyond your control and can change at will.

“How can I reduce my exposure to increasing energy rates? Can I take control of my energy bill? Does solar make financial sense?” you ask. We get these questions every day and there is not a one size fits all answer. So, let’s take a closer look to see if solar is right for you as the answer ultimately depends on your situation.

Your system size – Because there is a considerable amount of fixed cost to sell, design, and install a solar system, you get more bang for your buck as system sizes get larger. But we won’t just fill up your roof with solar panels. We customize the correct system size based on your available roof space, your energy usage, and your budget.

Utility policy – Texas is a patchwork of different utility companies. Some offer rebates. Some offer favorable rates for buying back your electricity, some do not. We understand how each utility treats their solar customers, and we take full advantage of all offerings as this affects your solar investment.

Cash or loan – There are several options to purchasing a system. Paying upfront with cash has different financial implications than taking out a loan. While paying cash will likely give you an asset that regularly outperforms the stock market, taking out a loan could provide you with better cash flow on a month to month basis.

I have a 2,000 sq. ft. house. Is my home a good candidate for solar?
There are a few questions that we will ask you about your home to make sure that solar is right for you (we won’t ask you now big your house is). To find out if you are a good candidate for solar, fill out our web form and we’ll have a quick discussion with you and ask the right questions to see if solar is right for you.

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