Time is Running Out for Uncle Sam To Put Some Money in Your Pocket

It’s mid-way through November and this is a good time to remind building owners that they only have a few weeks left to get federal tax credits up to 30% of the cost of qualifying energy-efficient products and/or system upgrades. These rebates apply to upgrades to heating and air conditioning units, water heaters and qualifying products purchased by December 31, 2010 deadline.


Rebates & Incentives

Rebates and incentives come in various shapes and sizes – so here’s a few tips on what to look for:

  • Direct rebates, which provide cash incentives for energy efficient pumps. In this category, rebates for pumps are not as popular as rebates for lights, chillers, furnaces, and appliances. However, in many areas, rebates are available for pool pumps. Check your local utility.
  • Direct rebates for new pump motors and drives. Rebates for premium efficiency motors and variable speed drives are very common. Check local utility. If the pump is used infrequently, then this may not be worth the money.
  • Indirect rebates for systems upgrades that include chiller and boiler retrofits, retro-commissioning programs, and new-building designs that beat state energy codes by a certain amount. Pump energy savings contribute to whole-system or whole-building energy calculations. Examples include California’s Savings by Design, which, through utilities, offers services and incentives to help owners and designers of commercial buildings raise facility energy performance 10% and more over state’s Title 24 code.


There also are a lot of online resources offering information on rebates and other tax incentives, or data/information you might need when applying for them. Here are a few to get you started:

1.    DSIRE US database Compilation of federal, state, and local programs offering rebates, grants, tax incentives and other forms of assistance for residential, commercial, and industrial buildings.

2.    EPAct Commercial Energy-Efficiency Federal Tax Credits.

3.    ENERGY STAR The website provides details on residential tax credits expiring December 31, 2010, and includes links to more supplemental information on saving energy.

4.    OEM Incentive Programs (example)

5.    www.efficientbuildings.org Sponsored by the Commercial Building Tax Deduction Coalition, including business, trade, government, energy efficiency, and other groups convened by the National Electrical Manufacturers Association

6.    Depreciation and Section 179 Expense (business tax credits for replacing equipment prior to its full depreciation)

7.    HGTVPro and The U.S. Department of Energy have teamed up to promote high-efficiency homebuilding and remodeling

8.    TIAP The Tax Incentives Assistance Project (TIAP), a coalition of public interest non-profit, government, and other organizations in the energy efficiency field

9.    Air Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) website, which includes a directory of oil, gas, heat pump, and electric water heaters should you want to check on product performance information, visit the


What have you done or are you doing to take advantage of the tax incentives or rebates to increase energy efficiency?

One Response to Time is Running Out for Uncle Sam To Put Some Money in Your Pocket

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