Buying an energy efficient window or door can be a great idea for homeowners. You can reduce energy costs. You can also receive nice tax breaks if your product has Energy Star certification. Here is an overview of what Energy Star certification means and what you can do with it.
Requirements for Energy Star Certification
The Energy Star standards are established by the United States Environmental Protection Agency. Products must meet certain energy saving criteria in order to qualify. The EPA publishes requirements for various products on the Energy Star website.
The EPA also has strict requirements on testing to prove that a product meets these standards. The EPA states that manufacturers need to use the National Fenestration Rating Council as a third-party testing company to test their products. The American Architectural Manufacturers Association and Window and Door Manufacturers Association will also need to conduct an analysis.
Companies that have received the Energy Star certification will also need to advertise it consistently to retain their certification. They also stipulate that the product must have the Energy Star logo on all of their literature.
Many companies are also working with Energy Star to receive additional recognition. These companies will need to work closely with Energy Star to show the progress that they have made towards improving energy efficiency.
Consumers won’t qualify for higher tax credits by purchasing products with special Energy Star certification, but they will probably save you more money over their lifetime. It is a good idea to read the company’s literature to better understand the potential energy savings of their products. Conducting a cost-benefit analysis will help you decide whether or not it is worth purchasing the product over another Energy Star version on the market.
Tax Subsidies for Consumers
Homeowners can receive significant tax rebates for buying Energy Star products. As of 2013, the subsidy is $2,000 for the purchase of any product that reduces energy costs by 50% or more.
Contractors can also take advantage of the tax credit. The EPA states that anyone building a new home can qualify for a $1,000 tax credit if they can reduce energy costs by 30% or more.
It is important to learn as much as possible about the product before purchasing it. Some products with the Energy Star label don’t save enough energy to qualify for the tax credit. However, they will publish enough information to help you figure out which Energy Star products are eligible for a rebate and which are not.
Don’t be swayed by manufacturers that simply list the Energy Star name on their site. You also want to see if the mention that their products are designed to meet Energy Star requirements, because that shows that they have tested their products to ensure they meet the minimum standards established by the EPA.