Consumers who replace older heat pumps, furnaces, water heaters and other appliances with energy-efficient models can get rebates worth up to $300 starting next month.
State officials announced today that they're starting a second appliance rebate program on June 1 to hand out about $1 million in federal stimulus money.
The program expands an earlier rebate offer that gave out about $7 million to consumers who bought more than 54,000 energy-efficient refrigerators, freezers, washing machines and dishwashers last month. That program ended April 25 but left the state with about $1 million that it still needs to give away.
The new rebates will include: $300 for air conditioning systems, heat pumps or gas furnaces; $200 for water heaters; $100 for washing machines or dishwashers; and $75 for refrigerators or freezers.
Most utilities are offering additional rebates of $50 to $300 as part of a mandate to encourage energy efficiency. Progress Energy will give customers who replace old heat pumps up to $300 back, for example.
To get the state rebate this time, however, consumers will have to do a bit more work. During the first phase, retailers provided an instant 15 percent rebate and filed paperwork to get reimbursed by the state.
Now consumers will need to go online after making their purchases and reserve their rebates. Then they'll have 14 days to mail in an application and a copy of the receipt.
The rebates will stop when the $1 million runs out. The N.C. Energy Office's Web site will include a live tally of the money left.
"We have to be very careful not to overspend," said Seth Effron, a spokesman with the N.C. Energy Office, which oversees the rebate programs.
Some retailers and contractors will probably offer additional discounts to spur sales.
During the first rebate program last month, for example, Sears offered an additional 30 percent off. The Sears in Crabtree Valley Mall in Raleigh gave out the most rebates in the state, Effron said, although he isn't allowed to provide a specific number per store.
North Carolina received about $8.8 million in federal money for the appliance rebates as part of a national effort to reduce energy use. Some of the money was spent on administration of the rebate programs.
For more information, visit the N.C. Energy Office Web site here and click on the "Get the Facts" logo.
See a list of most utilities' rebate programs in North Carolina online here.