All funding claimed in SC appliance rebate program

Columbia, SC - COLUMBIA, SC (WMBF) - South Carolina residents have now claimed all of the $3.9 million allotted for discounts on ENERGY STAR appliances through a federal stimulus program, securing more than 31,000 rebates.

Rebates on ENERGY STAR labeled dishwashers, clothes washers, refrigerators and room air conditioning units were all claimed by 7:26 p.m. May 19. All funding for rebates on ENERGY STAR labeled central air conditioning units, heat pumps, gas furnaces and water heaters were claimed by April 1, one day after the program launched.

"The benefits of this program have been significant for our state," Ashlie Lancaster of the Energy Office said. "Not only will more than 27,000 households now be able to save energy and money with their new energy efficient appliances, but more than 923 businesses state-wide benefited from an increase in sales due to rebates."

More than 213 retail locations and 710 contractors issued rebates in all 46 counties. Appliance retailers, as well as installers of whole-house, larger appliances experienced a significant increase in sales as South Carolinians spent more than $30 million on the purchases of new appliances in the past 50 days. In comparison to 2009 sales data, there has been a 30 percent increase in the sale of ENERGY STAR appliances in South Carolina during the last 50 days.

Consumers saved as much as 50 percent when making the choice to upgrade to these more efficient models. By combining rebates with offers from their local electric providers, manufacturer incentives and tax credits, residents were able to claim multiple discounts and further reduce the price of purchasing new appliances.

Residents can expect to save well into the future as their appliances use less energy and require less water than standard models. Over the average lifetime of these appliances, consumers should expect an estimated savings of more than $52 million according to energy savings data provided by the U.S. Department of Energy.

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