TXU Energy has launched a new online tool that enables homeowners to simulate how a variety of home energy improvements could impact their home energy efficiency and the impact on their energy bill.
The HERS Index (Home Energy Rating System), established by the Residential Energy Services Network (RESNET), is a rating system that estimates the energy efficiency of any home using predetermined values. The HERS Index is rapidly becoming the standard by which new homes are built, existing homes are represented during sale, and homes of all ages are evaluated for energy efficiency.
The TXU Energy Power Saver Challenge Simulator (www.txu.com/powersaverchallenge) allows homeowners to virtually apply a variety of energy-saving options and see how those changes could affect an average home built in the same decade as their own. Examples of energy-saving options that can be evaluated on the site include: converting to compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs, caulking windows, installing new heating/air conditioning systems and many more. Once the homeowner determines the changes their budget allows, they can also find information on the site about energy-saving tips and online appliance calculators.
“This new tool will educate and help consumers select the home energy improvements that are right for their unique situations,” said Jim Burke, chief executive officer, TXU Energy. “Customers are looking for ways to make a difference in their own homes, both for the environment and for their wallets, and this is just one of the innovative ways we are helping fulfill that need.”
The launch of the TXU Energy Power Saver Challenge Simulator coincides with the period of public Web voting to select the grand prize winner of the TXU Energy Power Saver Challenge. Three contest finalists representing different geographic regions in Texas have each won an HD video camera, a $5,000 cash fund to use for home energy improvements, a free in-home energy audit with energy-saving recommendations, and the chance to win the grand prize of $30,000 in cash. Their home audits and energy improvements have been videotaped and can be seen at www.txu.com/powersaverchallenge, where members of the public can vote for their favorite from Oct. 6 through Nov. 12. The grand prize winner, who will be announced on Nov. 17, will be selected based on a combination of Web voting, judging by an energy expert panel (which will evaluate each contestant’s HERS Index rating improvements), ingenuity, and energy-saving behavior.