On this page, we have provided you with specific information for your city that you can use to benchmark your building against your neighbors. Climate and weather data, average building sizes, average utility data, top incentives and rebates in your area, and building codes. We have scoured the internet for data to bring you the most comprehensive list of information you need to get started.
Whether you are a landlord, homeowner, or business owner, we have tips and tricks tailored to your city's specific needs to reduce your carbon footprint, save you energy, and more importantly save you money!
Elevation: 420 ft (130 m)
Location: 32° N, 96° W
Zone: C (midlatitude)
f no dry season
a temperature of the warmest month is 71F or above
This bustling city is located North of Texas and covers a whopping 385.8 square miles (that's almost as big as the entire state of Rhode Island!).
The topography of Dallas is pretty darn flat, with gentle rolling hills and sprawling prairies as far as the eye can see. The Trinity River runs right through the heart of the city, slicing it in half and providing a natural oasis for all sorts of critters, but also a natural oasis that's a relief from the heat.
Dallas is situated on a plateau that gradually slopes downward towards the Trinity River.
When discussing Dallas Energy Efficiency in relation to its geography and topography, there are two key things to keep in mind: rain and flooding, and urban heat sprawl.
The city has taken various measures to mitigate the risk of flooding from the Trinity River. The most notable of these measures was the construction of the Trinity River Project, a massive undertaking that began in the early 2000s and involved the construction of levees, floodgates, and other infrastructure designed to protect the city from the river's wrath.
Despite these efforts, however, the risk of flooding from the Trinity River remains a concern, especially during periods of heavy rain or severe weather.
The urban heat island effect in Dallas is exacerbated by the large amounts of concrete and asphalt used in the city's buildings and infrastructure. These materials absorb and retain heat, causing temperatures to rise even higher, which is common in most cities. This can cause serious health threats. High temperatures can lead to heat exhaustion and heat stroke. It also causes challenges for cooling inside buildings.
To mitigate the effects of urban heat, the city of Dallas has implemented a number of strategies. One of the most important is the creation of green spaces, such as parks and gardens, which help to absorb heat and cool the surrounding area. Something that the Trinity River also provides. The city has also invested in programs to plant trees and other vegetation, which provide shade and help to reduce the amount of heat absorbed by buildings and surfaces.
To reduce the amount of urban heat on the exterior of a building, consider these energy efficiency improvements:
Cool Foof - a white-colored roof reflects for sunlight and heat than any other color. While you can simply just get a light color like white. There are specially designed paints and roof materials that are designed to reflect light even further.
Window Film - Similar to tinting windows on a car, window film reflect sunlight but still allows you to see out.
Increase Insulation - insulation doesn't just work for the winter. It also keeps heat out in the summer. A properly insulated building will keep your space comfortable for longer.
Reduce Air Infiltration - sealing up air leaks around windows and doors prevents unwanted heat from creeping into the building.
Where you are located and the land around you can affect your buildings energy consumption in multiple ways:
Solar Exposure: Unless you live on the equator, the sun will never be directly above. Knowing your latitude, longitude, and the landscape around your building can tell you how much solar generation you can capture. You can determine the angle your panels should be at and if there will be any shading.
Elevation: Buildings at higher elevations may be exposed to stronger winds and more extreme temperatures. Buildings at lower elevations may be more susceptible to flooding and lack of sun due to shading. Elevation can also have drastic effects on temperature. If you live in a mountainous area, you can experience significant temperature changes while driving minutes away.
Terrain: Buildings located in urban areas may be subject to the urban heat island effect, where temperatures are higher due to the concentration of buildings and paved surfaces.
Dallas has a humid subtropical climate, with hot and humid summers and mild winters. The city is prone to severe weather, including hurricanes and thunderstorms, which can cause flooding, damages to housing exteriors, and equipment.
The city experiences a lot of rainfall, particularly during the summer months.
Summer typically lasts from June to August and temperatures often exceed 100F. While there can be long stretches of hot and dry weather, thunderstorms are also common during the summer months, and these can bring heavy rainfall, hail, and even tornadoes.
Winter in Dallas typically lasts from December to February and are pretty mild. The average temps are in the 50s and 60s. However, it's not uncommon for temperatures to drop below freezing, especially at night. Snow is rare, but when it does occur, it tends to be light and doesn't last long.
Spring and fall are generally mild and pleasant in Dallas, with temperatures in the 70s and 80s. However, these seasons can also bring a fair amount of rainfall and thunderstorms.
Average humidity levels hover around 60-70%.
High temperatures and high humidity make air conditioning a challenge. Not only does your system have to cool the air but also removes the humidity. The added moisture in the air causes cooling systems to work harder which increases energy demand, consumption, and cost. This makes energy efficiency improvements more important for your location.
While humidity can make the summers feel even hotter, it can also contribute to the risk of mold growth and other moisture-related problems in homes and buildings.
Try incorporating shading and ventilation to reduce the need for air conditioning. Increased ventilation, moves air around reducing the risk of mold and moisture problems.
Benchmarking your building against relative averages is a great way to start. Determining where you stack up against your neighbors, will give you an idea of how much further you can cut costs on your energy bills.
The average new home built in Dallas, Texas today is around 2,300sf.
The average residential energy consumed in Houston, Texas is about 1,094 kWh, per month. This is not exclusive to single resident homes.
The average utility rate is about $0.12/kWh.
United States average energy consumption of an office building 1,132 MMBtu
United States average energy consumption per square foot 65.9 kBtu/sf
Average commercial utility rate is about $0.08/kWh.
The city of Dallas provides a webpage that outlines what construction codes need to be followed for residential and commercial buildings. Don't overlook the link for Dallas's amendment to the International Energy Conservation Code.
The American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) is the leading professional organization that is leading the efforts in building decarbonization. This page has links to the mechanical and energy codes the City of Dallas would need to follow for new construction, renovations, or additions.
The International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) addresses energy efficiency on several fronts including cost savings, reduced energy usage, conservation of natural resources and the impact of energy usage on the environment.
Checking out incentives and rebates is a great way to make home improvements more affordable. With rising energy costs homeowners and businesses should identify the services that would serve them best. Then take advantage of the corresponding programs. Not only will you save energy, but you'll save money.
The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) passed on August 16, 2022. It includes several energy-efficiency and renewable system incentive opportunities for individuals and businesses. For most consumers, these incentives have one main goal: make it more affordable for homeowners to buy eco-friendly and clean energy equipment.
The federal solar tax credit is available to homeowners who purchase a new solar system. The Inflation Reduction Act increases the available tax credit to 30%, starting January 1, 2023. This means it is possible to get up to one third of the cost of solar to reduce your federal taxes owed.
Below is a list of the local utility companies for the Dallas Area. Utility incentives update regularly. Check out each of their websites for the latest rebates for improving energy use and efficiency.
Oncor Electric Delivery is the main electricity utility company in Dallas. Texas is a deregulated state when it comes to utilities, which means residents have the options to choose their rates. The below list includes a handful of retail electric providers (REPs) that offer different pricing plans and services.
If you'd like to compare rates, click here.
A Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Program is a financial tool that incentivizes property owners to upgrade facility infrastructure with little or no capital down. PACE loans are treated as a tax assessment against the property and are secured by a property tax lien.
The U.S. Department of Energy provides case studies for buildings located in each major city. The purpose is to show what is possible in terms of creative construction, recommended improvements, technology, project management, sustainability, and what is possible to achieve. Just search for "Dallas".
The Green Building Resource Center holds additional resources for Houston energy efficiency. Check out this site for more resource links, case studies, and events.
Green Dallas website is part of the City of Dallas website. It holds additional resources in terms of lists to a cost effective solution. Check out this site for more resource links, case studies, and events.
A local news station NBC-DFW talks about how weatherization helps residents from all income levels. This shows a great video on how this Dallas Whole Home Program provides assistance to help reduce energy costs. The program provides focus on weatherization against the elements.
This site provides a list of contractors that assist in energy efficiency measures. Whether you are looking for contractors who perform energy audits or implement home energy improvements, check out this list.