Texas business owners know that smart energy conservation can lead to big savings. We’re proud to support local businesses with rebates for the installation of energy-efficient lighting technologies, HVAC equipment and variable frequency drives (VFDs) for motor speed adjustment.
PEC’s commercial rebate program is subject to change without prior notice and is only available while funds last. Applications will be honored on a first-come, first-served basis.
Installations completed within a given program year will only be eligible for that funded program year and cannot qualify for the preceding or subsequent year. For example: Any installations completed during 2017 are not eligible for the funded 2018 program.
For complete details, download the Comprehensive Commercial Rebate Program Manual or explore the sections below.
Program funding update
All funds for the 2018 commercial rebate program have been distributed.
Program Purpose & Information
According to the Department of Energy, lighting, heating and cooling account for the majority of commercial-sector electricity consumption in the United States. Businesses have a great opportunity to reduce overhead costs by upgrading their lighting and HVAC equipment and by installing VFDs to control motor loads, saving energy and money without sacrificing comfort or lighting quality. Most lighting, HVAC and VFD upgrade projects can have relatively quick payback, and we offer incentives for these upgrades to accelerate that payback.
Qualifying lighting technologies include:
- Light-emitting diode (LED) fixtures
- Linear fluorescents (example: T-8 or T-5 lamps)
- Hardwired compact fluorescent lamps (CFL)
- Metal halides
- High-intensity discharge (HIDs) lamps
Qualifying HVAC equipment includes:
- Direct expansion unitary HVAC systems
- Split or packaged air conditioners and heat pumps
- Packaged terminal air conditioners and heat pumps
- Room air conditioners and heat pumps
- Air- and water-cooled chilling equipment (chillers)
VFD installations on pump and fan motors are also eligible for incentives.
Rebate incentives are based on kilowatts (kW) of reduced summer peak electricity demand. For new construction lighting projects, the summer peak kW reduction will be calculated based on a code-allowed Lighting Power Density (W/ft2) for the specified type of building. For all other projects, the summer peak kW reduction will be calculated based on an estimated coincidence with the system peak by building type.
Specific incentive amounts are outlined below in the Rebate Levels section.
Program Eligibility Criteria
You must meet all of the following criteria to be eligible:
- Project site must be located within PEC’s service area and receive electricity from PEC.
- Project must have been completed.
- You must submit a completed Comprehensive Commercial Rebate.
- Program application for each type of rebate requested.
- Proposed project must receive preliminary approval prior to work beginning.
- Final application must be received within 60 days of the work completion date.
- Proposed project must achieve a minimum demand reduction of 5 kW.
To qualify, all of the following installation requirements must be met:
- Installation must be overseen by a licensed professional or a Certified Energy Manager.
- Projects must satisfy all applicable local code requirements.
Lighting-specific Installation Requirements
- New T-8 linear fluorescent lighting equipment must meet Consortium for Energy Efficiency’s High Performance and Reduced Wattage lamp and ballast efficiency specifications.
- New LED products must be listed on the ENERGY STAR® or DesignLights™ Consortium Qualified Products lists.
- Exterior lighting products and fixtures must meet the International Dark-Sky Association rating criteria.
- Projects should follow Illuminating Engineering Society of North America recommendations for levels of lighting.
- Ninety percent or more of the lighting fixtures being replaced must be operational (retrofit projects only).
- The following project and measure types are not eligible:
- De-lamping on existing fixtures
- If an existing fixture is replaced with an entirely new one that requires fewer lamps to produce an appropriate level of light, the total reduction of summer peak kW demand will be eligible for incentives.
- De-lamping on existing fixtures
- CFLs without hardwired ballasts or permanent disks.
HVAC-specific Installation Requirements
- All components of the HVAC system must be new; no incentive will be paid for systems utilizing existing components.
- HVAC system must be Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) certified. For more information about AHRI, visit ahrinet.org. For more information on how to determine the AHRI reference number of an installed system, visit www.ahridirectory.org or consult with your contractor.
VFD-specific Installation Requirements
- VFD must be appropriately sized for the motor on which it is installed; if the VFD is oversized, the incentive will be calculated based on the motor size.
- No incentive will be paid for VFDs installed on motors operating continuously at 100 percent motor loading.
- N+1 redundancy motors (also referred to as active/passive or standby motors) are not eligible for an incentive.
Step 1: Participant submits preliminary application
Before installing any equipment, you must complete and submit a preliminary application that informs us about the estimated demand reduction and incentives that the proposed project will achieve. To complete and submit the preliminary application, complete the following:
Fill out commercial workbook(s)
Start by downloading the commercial workbook for the measure(s) you will be completing. The workbooks require you to use Microsoft Excel. Instructions for filling out the workbook(s) are included in the first worksheet within each workbook.
You may also contact us for assistance filling out the workbook(s). For help, send an email request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The workbooks automatically calculate the estimated demand reduction and incentives based on preliminary equipment information. You will be required to provide the following types of information within the commercial application workbooks:
- Participant information (including PEC account number)
- Building information
- Installer information (if available)
- Existing equipment information (for retrofit only)
- Proposed equipment information (retrofit and new construction)
- Proposed work completion date
- Sign-off from licensed professional or Certified Energy Manager (CEM)
- Note that the licensed professional or CEM will need to provide some of the required information.
Submit preliminary application
Submit the commercial workbook(s) to us for review. The workbook can be updated during the final application stage. You may submit your commercial workbook(s) as attachments via email to email@example.com.
Step 2: PEC approves preliminary application
If we determine the proposed project meets all program requirements, your application will be approved. Once you have this approval, you may move forward with the proposed installation.
Step 3: PEC conducts preliminary site survey
When we receive your preliminary application, we will contact you to schedule a preliminary site survey to verify the proposed lighting measures and project size are reasonable.
For retrofit projects, we may conduct an on-site pre-inspection to verify the equipment information proposed in your preliminary application.
Step 4: Participant installs equipment
After we verify that the project is scoped appropriately, you may move forward with the installation. It is necessary for the licensed professional or CEM to be aware of all program and installation requirements prior to performing the installation.
Step 5: Participant submits final application
When the installation is finished, you may complete and submit your final application by completing the following:
Update commercial workbook(s)
Update the commercial workbook(s) from your preliminary application. Any information unavailable during the preliminary application stage should be provided. Any installation information that has changed should be updated. Be sure to include the following information
- Installer information
- Payee information
- Actual work completion date
- Updated equipment inventory
Gather required documentation
Gather the following required documents to submit with your final application:
- Updated commercial workbook(s)
- Copy of dated contractor invoice or equipment purchase receipt
- Form W-9 for payee (should match information on federal tax return)
Submit final application
Email your final application with all required documentation to firstname.lastname@example.org for review.
The completed final application must be received within 60 days of the work completion date.
Final applications will not be processed without all required documents.
Step 6: PEC conducts final inspection
Upon receiving your final application, we will contact you to schedule a final inspection to verify the installation and inventory information.
Step 7: PEC approves final application
If we determine that the completed project meets all program requirements, we will approve the final application.
Step 8: PEC issues rebate incentives
If the final application is approved, then we will issue an incentive check to you within three to five weeks.
Note: The work completion date will determine which rebate structure will be applied to the approved final application.
All required documents must be received within 60 days of the installation date. Submit the following:
- Initial commercial workbook(s) (preliminary application stage)
- Licensed professional or CEM may need to provide information.
- Updated commercial workbook(s) (final application stage)
- Licensed professional or CEM may need to provide information.
- Copy of dated contractor invoice (final application stage)
- Licensed professional or CEM should provide this document.
- Form W-9 for payee (final application stage)
- Copy of PEC bill for existing accounts
The current Comprehensive Commercial Rebate Program incentive levels are as follows:
- Lighting $300/kW
- HVAC $270/kW
- VFDs $230/kW
Commercial installations completed within a given calendar year that meet that year’s installation requirements will be paid under that calendar year’s incentive structure. Applications for the previous calendar year will be accepted through the end of February for the following year.
A commercial site may only receive a maximum incentive of $17,500 per measure type (up to $35,000 per project site). If the $35,000 project cap is not reached, PEC may choose to waive the $17,500 per measure type cap on a case-by-case basis. All rebate incentives are provided on a first-come, first-served basis and are only available while funds last. Incentives will only be paid up to the amount of the customer investment. Rebate levels are subject to change at any time without prior notice.