Calif. offers millions in funds for new appliances

April 22, 2010 11:51:09 AM PDT
California is celebrating Earth Day by kicking off its "Cash for Appliances" program, and doling out $35 million in federal stimulus money towards rebates on energy efficient appliances.

The rebate program will be in play until that $35 million is gone. If other states are any indication, that money will be gone in a matter of days.

San Rafael resident Cornelia Coleman arrived at her local department store at 8 a.m. She quickly learned, though, that not all refrigerators qualify for the rebate which allows for $200 back on select models.

"I thought he was showing me just the energy-efficient ones, but the one he rung up wasn't," said Coleman, who opted to cancel that order for one that qualifies.

You can get a $50 rebate on certain air conditioners or a $100 rebate on a clothes washer.

"My husband probably would have waited for us to get a new machine if they didn't have the stimulus," said Fairfax resident Joanne Willis.

If you add in the manufacturer's rebate and PG&E's rebate, you can save some serious money, as Willis Did.

"One is $250 I know for sure, and another was, I think, $50, and the other $100," she said. "So that's $300, $400 savings at least."

It is a stimulus story apparently happening at Best Buys, K-Marts, Home Depots, Loew's and other appliance stores all over the state..

"Not only in the Bay Area, but other parts of the country that went through the stimulus as well. So they're seeing tremendous lifts like a Black Friday event," said Sears store manager David Dantes. "It's great... call it Green Thursday."

But if you want to get in on the government rebate you better be ready to mail in proof of purchase of the new, disposal of the old, and more.

Coleman finally found the fridge of her dreams, but learned it would not be available for weeks, when the rebate money might be gone, so she took off for another appliance store.

"I'm still going to buy a refrigerator, but why not take advantage of the deal?" she said.

For more information about the Cash for Appliances program, visit www.cash4appliances.org.


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