You may qualify for rebates if you meet the following criteria:
- You are a City of Bellingham single-family residential or duplex water customer
- You participate in the Community Energy Challenge (CEC)
- You replace a high volume toilet and/or clothes washer
Participation is voluntary on a first come, first serve basis. New construction is not eligible for the rebates. Rebate maximum available per customer account. Follow the steps below if you wish to apply.
Step 1. Sign up for the Community Energy Challenge
There is an assessment fee, but City residential water customers are eligible for a $100 rebate towards this fee when you sign up, if you also retrofit a high volume toilet and/or clothes washer.
The CEC provides a low-cost water assessment and energy audit of your home including, and follows up with a customized water and energy action plan detailing cost-effective measures of retrofit options and program incentives. The goal is to help you identify where energy and water savings can be found in your home, and the no-cost, low-cost, rebates, and financing options available to you. Guided by this information, you can then decide how you want to implement water and energy saving measures.
For more information and to sign up, visit www.communityenergychallenge.org or call 360-676-6099.
Step 2. Retrofit your high-volume toilet(s) and/or clothes washer
Once you have signed up for the CEC, you are eligible for a rebate after you purchase and install qualifying high-efficiency toilet(s) and/or a clothes washer.
Up to a $100 rebate is available per toilet when WaterSense labeled high-efficiency toilets purchased and installed. Toilets can account for about 30% of an average home’s water consumption. Older toilets use 3-5 gallons of water per flush. Extensive performance testing over the past decade has significantly improved new high efficiency toilets to ensure quality and functional products. A large range of tested and certified WaterSense labeled toilets are available for under $200.
For qualifying toilets, visit www.epa.gov/watersense/products/toilets.html. Toilets must be
WaterSense labeled. Search “Toilet” within Product Category at the EPA site. Narrow your search by choosing store brands or by specifying a manufacturer carried by a locally owned retailer. Eligible toilets must be EPA certified WaterSense Models and replace a 1.6+ gallon per flush model.
For toilet model performance, consult the Maximum Performance (MaP) testing list of WaterSense toilets for information.
A $100 rebate is available for ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washers. The EPA estimates these clothes washers use about 37% less energy and 50% less water than regular washers. In a typical American home, clothes washers are used for about 350 loads per year. An older, top-loading clothes washer uses about 41 gallons of water per load. A newer, more efficient washer uses an average of less than 20 gallons per load and has a higher capacity, which means you can wash more clothes per load. At 20 gallons per load, there is potential to save 4,000 gallons of water per year. High efficiency clothes washers also have a faster spin cycle than older models, reducing drying time. The ENERGY STAR website notes that if your washer is over 10 years old, you could save $135 on utility bills.
Qualifying clothes washers must be ENERGY STAR® models. If you are a PSE customer, you may also be eligible for an additional rebate from them.
Recycle old high-volume fixtures and appliances
Toilets: Unfortunately there are no Whatcom County recycling options for toilets, however you can dispose of your old toilet with Sanitary Service Company (SSC) and Recycling and Disposal Services (RDS).
Clothes washers: Appliance Depot, a self-sustaining job training business that salvages, refurbishes, and sells used appliances, accepts clothes washers and other items donated by residents. Donations are tax deductible. Appliance Depot partners with social service agencies to provide job training for low income residents. http://www.appliancedepotbham.com/index.php
Please contact the Water Conservation staff at the Operations Division of the Public Works Department if you would like more information and to verify specific product eligibility.