Unless you have been living in a cave, you have heard of the Cash for Clunkers Program. Owners of gas guzzling cars could get rebates of up to $4000.00 in this Federal program. These funds were to go toward the purchase of a newer, more fuel efficient vehicle. The program was successful. It may have worked a bit too successfully, as the funds earmarked for the program ran out so quickly that Congress had to approve adding more money to the program.
Now, the Obama Administration has created a similar program that is being touted as the “Cash for Appliance Clunkers” program. This is being done on a state level, and will give rebates to people who wish to trade in their old inefficient appliances such as refrigerators, and washing machines for new ones that have a better Energy Star Rating.
Just like the automobile program, the idea is to get rid of older appliances that use too much energy, and replace them with newer energy saving models.
The way this program is supposed to work, you purchase a new refrigerator, washing machine, air conditioner, or dishwasher, and get a $50.00 to $200.00 rebate, similar to the Cash for Clunkers rebates for autos.
The stimulus program is funding the program to the tune of $300 Million. However, each state will determine how much money they will seed the program with, and what appliances will be rebated. The Department of Energy must approve the plan for each state to enter this program. The Appliance Rebate Program (The official name) will actually begin sometime in 2010.
At the moment only Delaware has taken the program active. In Delaware, you can get $100.00 for a refrigerator, $30.00 for a dishwasher, $25.00 to $75.00 for a clothes washer, and $50.00 for an air conditioner.
You can check at this website to see what the status is of your state at this point, and to get an idea when you might be able to take advantage of the program.
Appliance Rebates Program
Clicking on the link “Find Rebates” will take you to a page which will let you plug in information about the appliance you wish to replace, and your zip code. You need to know the model number of your appliance. It should be noted that not all states have received approval from the Department of Energy yet. There is also a state map you can click on which will pull up a US map telling showing yuou the states that have been approved.
If this plan works like the cash for clunkers car program, it might be fraught with problems. If you recall when that program started, people were flocking to car dealerships making deals to buy new cars. Dealers were giving the rebates according to the government figures. However, they began to worry when it appeared the funds were running out. Congress had to step in and approve more funds.
While $300 million sounds like a lot, how quickly will the states run out of money to administer the program? Time will tell.