Recently our Congress critters set aside some dough ($300 million) to replace our crappy, old, energy hogging appliances with new snappy Energy Star refrigerators, freezers, washing machines, and dish washers. The New York Times Bucks blog has a rundown.
So what's the deal on "Cash for Appliances" in California? Well, first off, we should be getting more than 10% of the total amount of the federal program, or $35,200,000 - about $1 for every person in California.
Well, they're working on some programs but so far ... nothing's happening yet. California sent our application to the Department of Energy in mid-October.
Beyond "Cash for Appliances" the Federal government "announced" over $2 billion for California energy saving programs, "awarded" over $1 billion, and California has actually spent over $42 million ... that's 2% of the "announced" funding.
In addition "Cash for Appliances" PG&E and a few other companies or non-profits are offering rebates and incentives already (like PG&E's $200 for those who get a Tier 3 energy efficient washing machine). At the Flex Your Power website you can look up incentives based on your zip code. Take Solano County for example: there are 72 "incentives" available.
What if you wanted to buy a new fridge?
The federal "Cash For Appliances" program would probably add $75 in discounts for refrigerators ... on top of the $50 discount for getting a high efficiency fridge and $35 rebate for having your old ice box removed and recycled in Solano County.
The reality is that these rebates probably help the retailers more than consumers but we'll keep telling ourselves that we're actually getting a screaming deal (and ignore the likelihood that retailers are just jacking up their prices about as much as the new discounts lower them and laughing all the way to the bank) ... but that's not important. The big questions for shameless consumers are really:
(1) French doors or bottom freezer with one big door?
(2) White or Stainless Steel?