Sales Tax Break for Appliances

Texans in the market for certain appliances have a financial break coming. The state's Energy Star appliance sales tax holiday is coming up. Laurie Johnson reports.

This is the fourth year the State of Texas has offered a tax break on certain appliances and energy-saving household items.

The sales tax holiday runs on the Memorial Day weekend, May 28th through the 30th.

R.J. DeSilva is a spokesman in the Texas Comptroller’s Office. He says last year Texans saved $3.2 million in sales
tax by taking advantage of the tax holiday.

“They don’t have to pay sales tax on those energy-efficient appliances. So you get the break at the register and then obviously because of the fact that you have these Energy Star appliances, you are able to save on your monthly utility bills because of the energy savings that these appliances bring and water savings, in some cases, like clothes washers and dishwashers.”

Only certain Energy Star-rated appliances are eligible, including air conditioners under $6,000 and refrigerators under $2,000.

There are also some small ticket items on the list if you’re not in the market for a major appliance. Things like ceiling fans, programmable thermostats and compact flourescent light bulbs will be tax-free.

“Obviously, as the years go on, people are more conscious about saving energy in their households and obviously reducing demand on the state’s power grid.”

The U.S. Department of Energy estimates an Energy Star air conditioner uses 30 percent less energy than a conventional model. Clothes washers use 37 percent less energy and 50 percent less water.

For more information, visit Texas ENERGY STAR® Sales Tax Holiday Webpage.


Laurie Johnson

Laurie Johnson


Laurie is a native Houstonian who started her career at Houston Public Media in 2002. Laurie has covered a wide variety of topics for HPM, including the crash of the Space Shuttle Columbia, Hurricanes Katrina and Ike, and numerous elections. She is a frequent contributor to NPR and has been...

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