If you have reached this page you are likely interested in having your water heater replaced by Windy City Builders.Please see the required information and follow the steps below to start the process. Please note you agree to utilize a Time of Use energy plan if available in your area per California state requirement.
Be sure to do the following steps right away!!!The rebates are reserved by the state in order received and funding is limited.You can decide not to proceed before authorizing the replacement but without this information submitted it is not possible to secure an allocationif funds run out.
If your income is under the guidelines please register an account and complete the steps in the portal to obtain verification and approval for equity funding. Be sure to assign Windy City Builders as your Tech Clean contractor so we can link your application to the rebate we submit in the system.
Step 2) Please create an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information:
Name address, and phone number of the person on the utility bill (this needs to be the same as the person applying for the rebate)
Home square footage, number of occupants and typical shower usage per day (for example 4 occupants who take one 15 minute hot showers a day)
Photo of Electrical Panel with cover open (so we can see the breakers and particularly the main breaker load rating printed on top), if you cannot do this safely get assistance or call us
Photo of electric meter and Electric Meter ID Number
Photo of Electrical Panel far enough back that we can see the service drop if overhead and surrounding area
Photo of location of existing water heater far enough back that we can see where it is located and components attached
Photo of water heater label showing model and capacity, if you cannot find please let us know your best guess
Measurement of the area around the water heater of length, width, and height in inches Heat pump water heaters can sometimes be larger so we need to know if it will fit.
Photo of electric water heater outlet or gas water heater gas line
If your house has gas or electric cooktop, clothes dryer, HVAC (and number of furnaces), electric chargers
What is the program? California is offering limited time rebates at the state level that are combinable with local incentives and instant discounts. In addition, these rebates have “equity” tiers for lower incomes that greatly increase the covered amounts. In many cases these rebates can either fully cover the replacement or result in very little out of pocket costs. What costs remain are also eligible for federal tax credits if you qualify. These programs have limited funding and can be replenished or discontinued by the state once exhausted. Once all information is collected we will attempt to reserve the pertinent rebates on your behalf and confirm if you have an allocation. Submitting an application into the programs is not a guarantee by Windy City Builders or the rebate programs you will be approved, eligible, or a contract of installation. You will be provided a contract to approve before proceeding with the replacement.
Why is the state offering the program? California has determined one of the best ways to reduce building carbon emission is to convert water heaters to heat pump from gas or resistance electric. Doing this at a state level reduces load on the utility grid, helps the environment, and accelerates phasing out of harmful natural gas emissions.
Why should I switch to a heat pump water heater? My water heater is working fine. The biggest reason to switch to a heat pump water heater is energy savings. Most heat pump heaters have an estimated annual energy usage bill of about $120. This is opposed to even the most efficient gas units which typically cost over $300 a year to operate. Furthermore, new research is pointing to harmful effects of natural gas emissions so removing natural gas burning devices can improve the air quality inside and around the home.
What are the downsides to heat pumps?Will I run out of hot water? Heat pump water heaters are reliable technology. A version of heat pump technology has been in our homes for decades in our refrigerators. Refrigerators do not create cold air, they pump the hot air outside. Heat pump water heaters work in a similar fashion but instead pump the heat into the water. Heat pumps are slower to replenish hot water. However, they have similar and sometimes better first hour rating to gas and electric units. This means heat pump water heaters can supply similar amounts of hot water until the shower turns cold. Furthermore, hybrid units have an electric heating element that gives the best of both worlds. Heat pump efficiency when possible and resistance heating recovery when needed. In addition to this, heat pumps blow out a slight amount of cool air, as a byproduct of extracting ambient heat into the water. There is a fan that makes a low hum (similar to a dishwasher in noise). If the cold air poses an issue, it can be ducted to other areas or outside the house if needed. If someone is noise sensitive there are units with fans operating as low as 45db which is similar to a quiet library.
What are the differences between heat pump water heaters? There are a few important specifications to look at. First there are three types of heat pumps in the market. The first is a 240volt hybrid system. In all cases the units will provide plenty of hot water via the heat pump essentially equivalent to a newer gas or electric model. The recovery times vary between the units. These have one or more high energy backup electrical element that can help reduce recovery times. Some can even use the heat pump and elements together for even faster recovery. However, these units require a 240volt electric outlet and electric panel capacity. The second type is a 120volt hybrid system. These units are designed for emergency replacement of a gas unit and situations where a dedicated 240V outlet is not practical or desired to retrofit. While they have an electrical backup element, it is more for emergency use as the lower power reduces the recovery time significantly. A third type is a split system, these units have only a heat pump and no backup element. They have a tank for inside the house and the heat pump unit sits outside. Because of this, the heat pump is much higher capacity and does not need backup electrical elements. These units are suited for special situations where ambient air requirements cannot be met or extreme operating conditions. In addition to this different manufactures have various differentiating features and fan noise can vary. Our preferred water heater for 240V systems is the Bradford and White Aerotherm line. These units are only available to contractors but they have great output, recovery time, and they are the only heat pump water heater we know of made in America. For 120V units we prefer an AO Smith unit that is one of the newest designs and features a large compressor that we feel maximizes the performance available for 130V. However, based on your needs we are well educated on the differences between all makes of heat pump water heaters and can suggest the best solution.