AMHERST, N.Y. (WIVB)–After all these years of paying the state’s utilities big bucks to heat your home, those same gas and electric companies will now pay you to use less of their product.
National Fuel and NYSEG are paying Western New Yorkers to tune-up your furnace or hot water tank, or buy new ones.
NYSEG calls its initiative the Residential Rebate Program, and at National Grid it is the Conservation Incentive Program (CIP), which both residential and commercial customers can participate in.
The State Public Service Commission has mandated New York’s public utilities devise these energy efficiency programs that reward consumers for using less energy to heat their homes, release fewer greenhouse gases into the environment, and provide a rebate.
Consumers can earn the rebates by keeping their furnaces, boilers, and hot water tanks working at maximum efficiency, or replace them with new ones that are energy-efficient.
Under National Fuel’s CIP, consumers can get a $60 rebate for a furnace tune-up, $70 to tune up their boiler, $75 for getting their hot water tank in tip top condition, and if it is a high efficiency water heater, the rebate can reach $250.
There is also a rebate for tuning up tankless water heaters. The utilities pay the rebates with Visa gift cards.
Dennis Sprole of Sunbeam Service Experts in Amherst points out, National Fuel pays even higher rebates for upgrading to a high efficiency furnace can get you even more money back.
“If someone upgrades from an 80 percent efficient furnace to a 95 percent, or higher efficient furnace, they will receive a $525 rebate for the furnace,” and Sprole said National Fuel will add another $125 for installing a WiFi thermostat, for a total rebate of $650.
National Fuel spokesperson Karen Merkel said the Conservation Incentive Program is for residential and business gas customers.
“It is a three-pronged program to conserve energy, achieve energy savings, and positively impact the environment.”
They can also provide energy audits and weatherization for low income customers, through the company’s Low Income Usage Reduction Program (LIURP), and National Grid is certain their conservation program is having a positive impact on the environment.
“That we have made a substantial impact on CO2 emissions that have gone into the environment,” and Merkel said National Fuel’s figures show the CIP has reduced the equivalent of nearly 1.2 million metric tons of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere since the program’s inception in 2008.
National Fuel alone has paid residential customers nearly $30 million in rebates, and another $4 million through LIURP.