Local News

City offers rebates for high-efficiency toilets

By March 4, 2011

In an effort to help Davis residents reduce their indoor water consumption, the city is offering a $125 rebate for replacing old high-flow toilets. To qualify for the rebate, new toilets must be 1.28 gallons per flush (gpf) or less, with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s WaterSense TM label, says Jacques DeBra, the city’s utilities manager.

“Old toilets use more water than any other indoor appliance, so targeting their replacement can result in significant water savings,” DeBra said in a news release. High-efficiency toilets use at least 20 percent less water than standard 1.6 gpf ultra low-flow toilets, he added.

Eligible customers who purchase and install a high-efficiency toilet will receive a rebate credit of $125 per toilet on their city services bill.  New qualifying toilets must be purchased between March 1, 2011, and June 30, 2012. The program is not for new construction and is not retroactive to previously purchased toilets. There is a limit of two rebates per residence.

“Providing a rebate should encourage customers with older models to install water-efficient toilets,” said Richard Tsai, senior utility resource specialist with the city of Davis, “and customers who participate in the program will reduce their long-term indoor water use significantly.”

To qualify for a rebate, the toilet being replaced must have been installed in a single-family home in Davis built before 1993. The old toilet must be a 3.5 gpf or higher model and the retrofit must occur during the rebate program’s duration. All program participants are subject to a post-installation inspection.

Applications are available online at http://www.cityofdavis.org/pw/water. To receive a rebate credit, submit a completed application with a copy of a dated receipt via mail to the Davis Public Works Department, 1717 Fifth St., Davis, CA 95616, or via fax to (530) 758-4738.

Old toilets can be brought to the Yolo County Central Landfill on County Road 28H daily for a charge, or they can be disposed of for free at the city’s bulky waste drop-off days, April 7-9 at Davis Waste Removal. Hours are 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday, April 7-8, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 9. After the bulky items days are over, toilet rebate participants may call DWR at (530) 756-4646 to make an appointment to drop off their old toilet.

The rebate program will be largely funded by a 2009 energy efficiency and conservation grant. In June 2009, the City Council authorized the use of $51,000 of the grant funds for residential water efficiency improvements. City staff evaluated several options for investing the funds and determined that toilet rebates offered the largest water savings with the least expenditure of staff time, the news release said.

The water conservation benefits will result in energy savings for the city by reducing the amount of energy used to pump water from wells and pumping and treating water at the city’s wastewater treatment facility, the release said.

For more information, call the Public Works Department at (530) 757-5686 or visit http://www.cityofdavis.org/pw/water.

Enterprise staff

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