Using Utility Rebates: leveraging utility rebates

Lighting Utility Rebates

This is part two in a two part series about lighting showrooms leveraging utility rebates. Read part one.


It’s important to start the upgrade conversation with an understanding of the business’ current energy costs and consumption. So, an end-user must know how much money is being spent on energy costs, how to reduce energy costs, how to improve their lighting infrastructures, and how much more sustainable their organization will be after they have replaced antiquated florescent and high pressure sodium lights with energy-efficient LED luminaires.

Unfortunately, many end-users don’t know the answers to these questions, which explains why they typically don’t realize the opportunities for rebates and incentives to upgrade their lighting fixtures. These rebates and incentives vary from state to state, and are available to utility company customers.4


Let’s take a look at just a sampling of the countless incentives and rebates offered through utility companies when businesses upgrade their lighting systems. For a complete listing, the DOE has a comprehensive Web site called the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Rebates (DSIRE™):

CenterPoint Energy, Houston, Texas

CenterPoint Energy pays incentives or rebates to program participants for the installation of high-efficiency equipment that produces measurable and verifiable energy savings. 

To help customers save energy, CenterPoint offers incentives to offset the cost of installing high-quality LED lighting and control products in new and existing facilities. Cash incentives — based on peak demand and annual energy savings resulting from LED installations or retrofits — are available upon the verified completion of a qualified lighting project. These incentives typically cover 20-35 percent of the project’s total value, allowing customers to quickly recoup rate installation costs while saving energy, reducing operating expenses, enhancing property values, and providing users with outstanding service for years to come.

Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E)

Businesses that install energy-saving equipment are rewarded with cash payments based on the actual annual kWh or therm savings that are achieved. Because lighting systems can be expensive to update, PG&E offers two kinds of rebates to help defray costs:

Replacement Lamp Incentives. Earn instant rebates from participating lighting distributors through the purchase and installation of qualifying replacement lamps.

Replacement Fixture and Retrofit Kit Incentives. These rebates are designed to help cover the installation costs of qualifying fixtures or kits.
Its Lighting Rebate Catalog has details on how to take advantage of these rebates. Customers can also apply and check the status of rebates online through its eRebates program.

Central Hudson Gas & Electric
Central Hudson, New York

Central Hudson Gas & Electric’s (Central Hudson) Commercial Lighting Rebate Program is for businesses, retailers, institutional customers, and non-profit customers of Central Hudson. The program utilizes the services of Lime Energy to install new lighting fixtures with Central Hudson covering up to 70 percent of the cost and the rest may be covered with up to 24-month financing.

Jeff Gatzow is National Sales & Marketing Manager/Lighting with Optec LED Lighting®, a California-based supplier of high-efficiency, super bright LED lighting fixtures that feature a patented thermal management system that allows even heat dissipation and extended life. He may be reached at

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