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New Appliance Tax Credits, Rebates, and Incentives for Consumers

September 8, 2009 - 11:16am

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Note: As of February 2012, the appliance rebate programs are closed.

A couple of weeks ago, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy announced a new appliance rebate program. Starting later this year and in early 2010, consumers will be able to receive rebates to purchase new ENERGY STAR-qualified appliances when they replace their used appliances.

More than 70% of the energy used in our homes is for appliances, refrigeration, space heating, cooling, and water heating. Replacing old appliances and equipment with those that are ENERGY STAR® labeled can help American families save significantly on their utility bills.

Energy savings will depend on the specific appliance and model being replaced, but new ENERGY STAR appliances save significantly more energy than those manufactured years ago. For example, replacing a clothes washer made before 2000 with a new ENERGY STAR model can save up to $135 per year. Replacing a refrigerator made before 1993 with a new ENERGY STAR model can save up to $65 per year.

Each state and territory may select its own set of ENERGY STAR-qualified products to rebate. The U.S. Department of Energy has recommended the following appliances:

  • Boilers
  • Central air conditioners
  • Clothes washers
  • Dishwashers
  • Freezers
  • Furnaces (oil and gas)
  • Heat pumps (air source and geothermal)
  • Refrigerators
  • Room air conditioners
  • Water heaters

State energy offices will administer the rebate program. Some states may offer the rebate at the point of purchase—when consumers are actually purchasing the appliances. Other states may require consumers to mail in a paper form to request a check. There may be other ways, too, since each state will set up its own processing system.

The rebates will help consumers save energy and money at home in more ways than one. Federal tax credits also are available now for many home energy efficiency improvements, including windows, doors, water heaters, and HVAC equipment for existing homes.

Some local utility companies offer additional rebates and other incentives.

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