How to Calculate Your Electric Bill (Calculator Included!)

The Easiest Way to Estimate Your Energy Bill

Learning how to calculate or estimate your electricity bill is a great way to understand your home’s energy consumption, the costs associated, and how to reduce those costs. You can calculate your Texas electric bill by multiplying your kWh usage by the sum of your energy cost and TDU delivery charges listed in your Electricity Facts Label.

Find out how your energy bill stacks up against the average in Texas.

Energy Bill Calculator

If you would rather not do the math yourself, feel free to use our custom bill estimation calculator.

  • Enter kWh usage between 0 and 5000. Look at your past bills to find your real usage.
  • Enter in Energy Charge between $0.00 and $0.25. Look at your Electricity Facts Label to find your Energy Charge.
  • Always select the same TDU from the Delivery Rate and Monthly Fee fields. Select the TDU for your region.
  • If your plan does not have a Base Fee, enter in a zero.
  • Please note this calculator does not currently work for time of use plans or those with bill credits.
kWh Usage
Energy Charge
TDU Delivery Rate
TDU Monthly Fee
Base Fee

How to Estimate Costs for Different Types of Plans

Estimate the Electricity Cost for Simple Fixed Rate Plans

Here is the equation to calculate the bill of a simple fixed rate energy plan:

Energy Bill = kWh Usage x (Energy Rate + TDU Delivery Rate) + TDU Monthly Fee

Let’s take a real example of a BKV Energy energy plan to see how the bill estimates play out at 500, 1000 and 2000 kWh.

  • 500 kWh x ($0.087124 + $0.03848) + $4.23 = $67.04
  • 1000 kWh x ($0.087124 + $0.03848) + $4.23 = $129.85
  • 2000 kWh x ($0.087124 + $0.03848) + $4.23 = $255.47

Estimate the Energy Cost for a Free Nights Plan

Here is the equation to calculate the bill of a free nights electricity plan (let’s operate under the assumption that your electricity is free 40% of the time):

Energy Bill = 60% x kWh Usage x (Energy Rate + TDU Delivery Rate) + TDU Monthly Fee

Let’s look at another real life example from TXU Energy to see how this calculation plays out. This plan also included a $9.95 monthly base fee.

  • 60% x 500 kWh x ($0.22 + $0.03848) + $4.23 + $9.95 = $91.73
  • 60% x 1000 kWh x ($0.22 + $0.03848) + $4.23 + $9.95 = $169.28
  • 60% x 2000 kWh x ($0.22 + $0.03848) + $4.23 + $9.95 = $324.38

Estimate the Electricity Bill for a Free Weekends Plan

You can find the equation needed to calculate the bill of a free weekends plan below (in this situation, we assume that your electricity is free 30% of the time):

Energy Bill = 70% x kWh Usage x (Energy Rate + TDU Delivery Rate) + TDU Monthly Fee

Here is another real life example from a Reliant Energy contract.

  • 70% x 500 kWh x ($0.178243 + $0.03848) + $4.23 = $77.92
  • 70% x 1000 kWh x ($0.178243 + $0.03848) + $4.23 = $151.61
  • 70% x 2000 kWh x ($0.178243 x $0.03848) + $4.23 = $299.00

Understanding Different Charges on Your Energy Bill

example electricity bill

If you’re unfamiliar with the meanings of each of the charges and terms on your energy bill, we’re here to help.

kWh Usage

Your kWh usage or consumption measures exactly how much electricity you used in your home to power your lights, appliances, television, heating and cooling, and more. The lower your energy usage, the lower your bill and vice versa.

Learn how to calculate kilowatt hours.

Energy Rate

The energy rate is the price per kWh that you pay to your retail electricity provider. Depending on the type of plan you are enrolled in, the energy rate may vary depending on how much electricity you use. Check your EFL for those details.

TDU Delivery Rate

The TDU delivery rate is the price per kWh that you pay directly to your utility company for the management and maintenance of the power lines and other infrastructure responsible for sending the electricity to your home from the power plant. Retail electricity providers pass 100% of this cost directly to the utility company. These rates are determined solely by the utility company and approved every six months by the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT).

TDU Monthly Delivery Charge

In addition to the kWh rate, TDUs also charge a flat monthly fee to cover more of the management and maintenance of electricity infrastructure in your region.

Learn more about TDU regions and their charges.

texas tdu (transmission distribution utility) service area map

How to Calculate Your Electricity Usage

There are two ways to figure out how much electricity you will use in a given month in your home.

  1. Look at your past bills and find how much energy you used in the same month during the prior year. Generally, it should be about the same kWh consumption if you haven’t moved or made significant energy efficiency improvements to your home.
  2. Manually calculate your electricity consumption by estimating the usage of your lighting and appliances. If you calculate the usage of each of the items in your home that consume electricity, you can estimate your upcoming electricity bills.

How to Calculate kWh Usage and Energy Cost of Specific Appliances

Follow these steps to estimate how many kilowatt hours your appliances and devices require.

  1. Find the energy label on the back of the appliance and look for the wattage.
  2. Divide that wattage by 1,000 to get the energy usage in kilowatts. (1000 watts = 1 kilowatt)
  3. To calculate the kilowatt hour usage of the appliance, multiply the kilowatts by the average number of hours the appliance is used per day.
  4. Next, multiple the average daily kilowatt hours by 30 to get the usage for an average month.
  5. Multiply the average monthly kWh usage of the appliance by your average kWh rate in your EFL to get the electricity cost of that appliance.
  6. Repeat this process and add up the total cost of all appliances.

Everything You Need to Calculate Your Electricity Bill

paying electricity bill with base charge

Now that you know the different charges that make up your energy bill and the equations to estimate the cost of electricity, you have everything you need to know to better budget for your monthly spending. Additionally, you can apply this math when you are shopping for your next electricity plan.

Use the details from the Electricity Facts Label and compare the rates against your historic usage to see how much you would’ve spent. If your bills would have been higher throughout the previous contract at these new potential rates, we do not recommend signing up for that plan.

Simple Fixed Rates Lead to Lower Bills

As indicated in the above real examples of electricity bill calculations, you can see that simple fixed rate plans lead to overall lower energy bills compared to gimmicky plans like free nights and free weekends plans. The same goes for other types of gimmicky plans such as those with base fees, bill credits, and plans designed for charging electric vehicles.

If you’re interested in a simple fixed rate energy plan, enter your zip code here to explore BKV Energy’s electricity plans available in your area. Rates vary by location.