Oncor Energy Incentive Programs for Texas Homeowners

Does your residence qualify?

Commitment to Energy Efficiency

Oncor Electric Delivery is the largest electric utility in Texas, serving more than 10 million customers. Oncor is characterized by its solid commitment to helping its customers improve their energy efficiency, and they run some of the largest incentive programs in the state including www.takealoadofftexas.com.

The company offers programs for all main customer categories: residential, business, government, education and nonprofit organizations.

Oncor Energy Efficiency Incentive Program Texas

Four Incentive Programs from Oncor Energy 

Oncor’s residential incentive programs target four key areas: insulation, heating and cooling equipment, solar photovoltaic systems and high-efficiency lighting.

  • The Home Energy Efficiency program applies for insulation, heating and cooling upgrades.
  • The Low-Income Weatherization incentive is for home insulation improvements.
  • The Solar Photovoltaic Residential incentive helps homeowners deploy solar panels and their associated components at a reduced cost.
  • The Oncor Retail Products Program offers discounts at the point of sale when homeowners purchase LED products with ENERGY STAR labels.

Residential incentive programs from Oncor normally run annually from February to November. Note that funding is limited for each year, which means you have an increased chance to get incentives by acting early

In 2020, the budgets available for these incentive programs are the following:

Program Total Budget
Home Energy Efficiency US$ 8,502,750
Low-Income Weatherization US$ 5,965,150
Solar Photovoltaic Residential US$ 1,163,950

When carrying out energy improvements for a home, the recommended starting point is insulation. If insulation is improved first, heating and cooling upgrades can be calculated based on reduced loads, which means the new units can have both a higher efficiency and a smaller installed capacity.

A solar photovoltaic system is recommended after improving energy efficiency, since the generation capacity required to meet your needs will be less.

Low-Income Weatherization Program

Deficient home insulation and air leaks increase the load on heating and cooling systems, since they must compensate for added heat gain during the summer and heat loss during the winter. This increases the energy consumption of HVAC installations, resulting in higher power bills.

The Low-Income Weatherization Program provides cash incentives for Texas homeowners below 200% of the federal poverty line, allowing them to improve their building envelope at low cost or even zero cost.

The program also provides incentives to upgrade plumbing installations, home appliances and window air conditioners.

The three most common building envelope upgrades for residential properties are insulation, caulking and weatherstripping:

  • Insulation increases the resistance to heat flow across a roof, wall or floor. Insulation is important for the entire building envelope, but priority should be given to the roof and basement – unwanted heat flow occurs mostly in these areas.
  • Caulking improves airtightness for static building envelope elements such as lighting and plumbing fixtures, as well as door and window frames.
  • Weatherstripping accomplishes the same function as caulking, but is used in moving building elements like door and windows.

Home upgrades carried out with the Low-Income Weatherization Program provide immediate energy savings with no need for mechanical equipment upgrades, and often at zero cost.

NEW for 2020, the Low-Income Weatherization Program includes an incentive for home insulation upgrades. To be eligible, the insulation upgrade must meet the two following conditions:

  • The existing insulation must be R22 or less.
  • The insulation must be upgraded to R38.

The incentive rate is calculated per square foot, and it depends on the type of heating system used by the property.

The following table summarizes the new 2020 insulation incentives:

Type of Heating System Incentive per Square Foot Incentive for 1,000 Sq. Ft.
Electric resistance heater $0.46 / sq.ft. $460
Electric heat pump $0.21 / sq.ft. $210
Gas-fired heater $0.18 / sq.ft. $180

Home Energy Efficiency Program

This program provides incentives for the same insulation and airtightness measures described above. However, unlike the Low-Income Weatherization program, this one is available for all homeowners who are Oncor customers. If your property is rented you are also eligible, as long as you have permission from the owner.

Other than building envelope upgrades, the Home Energy Efficiency Program is also available for heating and cooling upgrades. HVAC equipment may leak around 20% of the air in circulation, and this represents an extra energy cost in your monthly bill.

However, with Oncor you can get incentives from $300 to $3,000 to improve home heating and cooling systems. Eligible types of equipment include central air conditioners, central heat pumps, ground-source heat pumps and water heaters.

In the case of air conditioning upgrades, the incentive applies for equipment with a minimum Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) of 16.

Differences Between the Low-Income Weatherization and Home Energy Efficiency Programs

The two program previously mentioned have some overlap in the types of home upgrades that are eligible for incentives. The following table summarizes the coverage of each program:

Type of Home Upgrade Low-Income Weatherization Home Energy Efficiency
Faucet aerators YES
Home weatherization YES YES
Ceiling insulation YES YES
Central air conditioner YES
Central heat pump YES
ENERGY STAR clothes washer YES YES
ENERGY STAR dishwasher YES
ENERGY STAR refrigerator YES
Floor insulation YES YES
Energy efficient shower heads YES
Ground source heat pump YES
Residential wall insulation YES YES
Residential water heater jacket YES YES
Water heater pipe insulation YES YES
Window air conditioner YES

Solar Photovoltaic Residential Program

Oncor homeowners planning to install solar panels can reduce their upfront costs with this incentive, increasing the return on investment. If the solar power system meets the requirements explained below, it is eligible for the incentive:

  • New installation: The incentive is not retroactive for existing systems.
  • Tilt angle range: The minimum is 0°, and the maximum is the latitude plus 15°.
  • Azimuth range: 90° to 270°
  • Installed capacity range: 1 kW to 10 kW AC (alternating current)

The maximum incentive for a home solar power system is $8,500.

Unlike the energy efficiency program, this one only applies for Oncor customers who own the home where they live, and new constructions are not eligible.

Keep in mind that solar photovoltaic systems in Texas have a property tax exemption, which means you will not be taxed on any increase in home value after the installation.

Consider that solar power systems in the US are eligible for a 26% federal tax credit, but the benefit will be gradually phased out between 2020 and 2022. Depending on the year where the solar PV system is deployed, the federal incentive is reduced:

  • 2020: 26% tax credit
  • 2021: 22% tax credit
  • 2022 or later: 0% tax credit for homeowners, 10% tax credit for businesses

If you plan to equip your property with a solar power system, acting quickly pays off because a larger federal tax credit can be claimed.

Oncor Retail Products Program

The Retail Products Program focuses on LED lighting, through discounts at the point of sale for Oncor customers. The discounts are available from major retailers such as Costco, Home Depot, Lowe’s and Walmart.

Just like the Home Energy Efficiency Program, the Retail Products Program is available for homeowners who have Oncor as their service provider, as well as renters who get authorization from their landlord.

While the program focuses on LED lighting, it is not exclusive for lighting products. Several ENERGY STAR home appliances also benefit from the Oncor Retail Products Program.

Take Advantage Now

Oncor’s incentive programs allow you to reduce your energy expenses with a two-fold approach: reducing the energy spent on heating and cooling, and using solar panels to generate your own energy once your consumption has been reduced.

Just keep in mind that the incentives are given to service providers, who then reflect them as a discount when they carry out home upgrades.

Make sure you get many proposals before choosing a contractor, ensuring that you get the best deal available. Acting fast is also recommended, since these incentive programs are limited by a yearly budget.

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Electricity prices in Texas reach their highest point during summer, and 2020 will not be the exception.

Actually, this year is a special case due to the Coronavirus outbreak, and the population will be staying at home and using the air conditioner more frequently. 

Smart thermostats help regulate energy usage within your home or business. Right now, customers of Oncor can save $75 on a Nest or ecobee thermostat through this limited time offer. Snag your coupon here.


2020 Residential Program Kick-Off Presentation


2020 Solar Program Kick-Off Presentation


Get two free trees from Oncor Past Incentives:  2019 ENERGY-SAVING TREES PROGRAM from Oncor

For the 8th year, Oncor has partnered with the Arbor Day Foundation’s Energy-Saving Trees Program to give away 8,000 trees to customers. Oncor customers can receive up to two free 5 gallon trees per household. The trees are between 1 and 3 feet tall and will be delivered to customers this fall. Get more information and sign up for the Energy Saving’s Tree Program today! Trees are limited.