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By The Skanner News | The Skanner News
Published: 18 February 2009

Puget Sound Energy announced today that beginning immediately the utility is offering a $1,200 instant rebate to the first 400 PSE residential customers (and an $800 instant cash discount to all other residential customers) who install energy-efficient ductless heat pumps through the end of the year.
According to PSE, ductless systems can be installed without costly and difficult remodeling and provide major energy-efficiency savings in homes with electric-baseboard and forced-air heating systems.
The new PSE incentive is part of a larger project led by the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) to test how the energy use of ductless heat pumps performs against less efficient forms of heating in single family homes.
Estimates from the Regional Technical Forum of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council suggest home energy use can be reduced by as much as 30 percent per year by converting to ductless heat pumps from electric baseboard heat or older forced air furnaces.
A ductless system, which according to NEEA can range in cost from $3,500 to $5,500 for systems with a single internal ductless heat pump head, includes an outdoor unit that connects to interior units through refrigerant lines with little visual or structural impact.
The indoor unit can be easily mounted to an interior wall and supply temperature-controlled air, either heated or cooled, directly into rooms, without the energy loss associated with distributing hot or cold air through ductwork.
In addition to discounts for customers, PSE will provide funding to distributors for designing and executing ductless heat pump sales programs that pass additional benefits to the homeowner.
To qualify for ductless heat pump rebates, residents must be a PSE electric customer; live in a single-family home or building with four units or less; use electric baseboard heat or forced air furnaces; and the work should be completed by an independent contractor, pre-authorized by NEEA.
With the new ductless heat pump incentive, PSE rebates and other incentives, homeowners can save as much as $4,300 when combined with energy efficiency upgrades to insulation and windows, as well as the purchase of ENERGY STAR-rated clothes washers, natural gas furnaces, and natural gas storage water heaters or tankless water heaters.
PSE predicts that its energy efficiency programs will save enough energy over the next 20 years to negate the need for building two additional mid-sized, 250-megawatt power plants.
For more information on how to participate in PSE's ductless heat pump rebate program or other energy efficiency home upgrades, visit PSE.com or call a PSE Energy Advisor at 1-800-562-1482.

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