January 15, 2010
Could saving money get you into hot water?
Actually, yes. Under a new federal program, the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund is offering immediate rebates to homeowners, businesses and organizations that purchase solar-powered hot water heaters when they work with an approved contractor.
The way the program works, homeowners and businesses gather cost estimates from the list of eligible contractors, who evaluate how much energy is generated from sunlight at the home or business during the winter months.
Using a solar path finder, the contractor measures the shading and enters the information into a computer program to determine how much energy (in BTUs) the solar thermal hot water heater is likely to get from the sun, says Stephen Wierzbicki, president of Nutmeg Mechanical Services in Manchester, one of the approved contractors.
The more energy generated by the sun, the bigger the rebate.
While the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund website says rebates could be as much as $4,800 for a large house, Wierzbicki says most homes his company has measured don't have optimal solar conditions, so the rebate typically is closer to about $3,000.
Most of his customers pay about $11,000 to $12,000 after the rebate, he said. After-rebate prices for the solar thermal hot water heater and its installation vary, depending on the size of the water heater and how much solar energy each house generates. Homeowners don't have to wait for the rebate; the installer charges the after-rebate price.
Click here to read the full article from the Courant.