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News Release from Comptroller Susan Combs

For Immediate Release
May 19, 2009

Shoppers Can Save Twice on Energy Efficient Appliances This Weekend

(AUSTIN) — This weekend marks the second annual Energy Star Sales Tax Holiday — an event designed to help Texas consumers buy energy efficient appliances that will help lower their utility bills. The tax holiday provides a great incentive to help consumers replace old, energy-zapping appliances and join statewide energy conservation efforts.

During the three-day tax holiday, May 23–25, Texas shoppers get a break from state and local sales taxes when they purchase certain energy-efficient appliances and other household equipment bearing an Energy Star label. Shoppers can expect to save about $3 million overall in state and local sales taxes during the event.

The annual savings in average utility costs can really add up after purchasing an Energy Star product. A programmable thermostat can yield $204 in annual savings. A new, energy efficient central air conditioner unit can save $190 per year. An Energy Star clothes washer can save up to $55 annually.

Energy Star Product Annual Savings
Programmable Thermostats $204
Central Air Conditioner* $190
Clothes Washer $55
Ceiling Fans (three lights) $33
Ceiling Fans (no lights) $4
Dehumidifiers $27
Room or Window Air Conditioners $17
Refrigerator $13
Dishwasher $7
Light Bulbs (compact fluorescents over incandescent) $6/bulb

* The central air figure is based on 2,209 cooling hours per year in Houston, which is average for the state of Texas.

Assumptions:

  • Avg. Texas Electric Rate: $0.126 per kWh
  • Avg. Texas Gas Rate: $1.64 per therm
  • Avg. Texas Water Rate: $0.004721 per gallon
  • Percent Electric Water Heating in Texas: 44%

“This weekend, Texans have the opportunity to cash in not once, but twice, on energy efficient appliances,” said Texas Comptroller Susan Combs.

The Energy Star Sales Tax Holiday applies only to the following equipment: air conditioners priced less than $6,000, refrigerators priced less than $2,000, ceiling fans, incandescent and fluorescent light bulbs, clothes washers, dishwashers, dehumidifiers and programmable thermostats, along with installation and delivery charges for these products.

More information about the tax holiday is available on the Comptroller’s Web site at http://www.window.state.tx.us/taxinfo/sales/faq_energy_star.html. More information about Energy Star products can be found at www.energystar.gov.

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