Rooftop Replacements – Use the Save on Energy Program and drop your payback to less than a year!
September 23, 2013
We were recently approached by a local manufacturing company for a second opinion on replacing their rooftop heating and cooling units. As is the case with a lot of opportunities we see, this client appeared to be solely interested in finding cost savings. What was a pleasant surprise was the process we both went through to generate over $10,000 in incentives as well as a project that paid back in less than 8 months! Let me take you through this project and show you how some ‘digging’ by your HVAC contractor and some foresight by the customer led to an excellent solution for all!
The customer was looking to replace 3 rooftop units. We assumed, like the current contractor, that the customer was looking to minimize his out of pocket cost. We all know what usually happens – the lowest bid wins. Not that this is a bad result, but it would have meant that the customer would eventually paid way more than he needed to. Why? It would have ignored the incentives available from the Save On Energy program!
In this case, the lowest cost replacements were 11 EER – which did not meet the minimum standards required for the incentive. The minimum EER for the program (12) equivalents were over $10,000 more expensive – a huge premium for a project this size. In fact, on its own the customer surely would have chosen the lower cost alternative – particularly since it only generated an estimated $513 in savings. To be sure, a payback of over 20 years is likely to fail in most environments!
What happened? We spent a few hours with our contacts at the local hydro distribution company to examine what kind of incentives were available and what kind of performance was needed to be eligible. We found out that by increasing the efficiency (EER) the project would be eligible for incentives that were almost equal to the entire cost premium! We then sat down with the customer and showed them that by using the incentives available to them they could purchase a much more efficient unit, have most of the cost premium covered by the incentive, and be cash positive within 8 months!
In the end, we found that with some work on our part, and a customer with a longer term focus can end up with Rooftops that generate savings for the life of the equipment!
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