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The U.S. Department of Energy and the North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center are excited to announce that a new, modernized DSIRE is under construction. The new version of DSIRE will offer significant improvements over the current version, including expanded data accessibility and an array of new tools for site users. The new DSIRE site will be available in December 2014. Staff are currently working hard on the new version of DSIRE but are also maintaining the content of the current version of DSIRE. Thank you for your continued support and patience during this transition. We hope you are as excited for December as we are!

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Incentives/Policies for Renewables & Efficiency

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Austin Energy - Solar Water Heating Rebate   

Last DSIRE Review: 09/16/2014
Program Overview:
State: Texas
Incentive Type: Utility Rebate Program
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies: Solar Water Heat
Applicable Sectors: Commercial, Residential, Nonprofit, Schools, Local Government, State Government, Fed. Government, Multi-Family Residential, Institutional, Must be an Austin Energy customer
Amount:Existing Homes: $2,000
New Homes: $1,500
Commercial: Custom
Maximum Incentive:Rebate: $2,000 Loan: $10,000 for duplex; $5,000 for single family
Eligible System Size:System should be sized to accommodate a minimum of 4 people; no maximum specified
Equipment Requirements:Must use new, SRCC certified equipment and be designed for frost protection and scale elimination or remediation; Minimum 5-year warranty on major components; System must pre-heat water for a permanently installed electric water heater; Minimum size: 80 gallons
Installation Requirements:Must be installed by a licensed contractor; Equipment must meet all applicable Austin city codes and adhere to the city building permit process
Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:Austin Energy
Program Budget:$3 M (FY2012 for all solar programs)
Web Site:

Austin Energy offers its residential, commercial, and municipal customers either an up-front rebate or a low-interest loan for the purchase and installation of solar hot water heaters. Because the program is in part designed to help Austin Energy reduce peak electricity demand, only systems that preheat water for a permanently installed electric hot water heater are eligible to receive the incentive. Rebate levels vary by customer class.


  • Residential (new construction): $1,500
  • Residential (existing homes): $2,000 or low interest loan (see below)
  • Commercial: Custom, determined on a case-by-case basis

Loans option details (existing homes)

  • Home improvement loans: 0% interest rate over 3, 5, 7, or 10 year term; $1,500 minimum
  • Personal loans: 2% interest rate over 3 or 5 year term; $500 minimum
  • Maximum loan of $5,000 for single family or $10,000 for duplexes
  • Additional 2% interest rate (added to base rate) for credit scores of 639 and below

All systems must be new, SRCC certified, and sized to accommodate the needs of at least 4 people. Systems must also be designed for frost protection, scale elimination or remediation, and have a 5-year warranty on all major components. The use of existing tanks will be allowed on a case-by-case basis. All systems must be installed by a licensed, program approved contractor, and comply with all applicable city codes and permitting requirements. Participants must sign an agreement stating their intention to maintain the system in proper working order for at least 5 years and allow Austin Energy to inspect the system. Failure to maintain the system may result in repayment of a prorated portion of the rebate. Participants must also sign a Renewable Energy Credit (REC) Assignment Form handing over all RECs produced by the system to Austin Energy.

  Conservation Information Center - Solar Rebates
Austin Energy
Solar Rebate Program
721 Barton Springs Road
Austin, TX 78704
Phone: (512) 482-5346
Fax: (512) 482-5409
Web Site:
NCSU - home
Disclaimer: The information presented on the DSIRE web site provides an unofficial overview of financial incentives and other policies. It does not constitute professional tax advice or other professional financial guidance, and it should not be used as the only source of information when making purchasing decisions, investment decisions or tax decisions, or when executing other binding agreements. Please refer to the individual contact provided below each summary to verify that a specific financial incentive or other policy applies to your project.

While the DSIRE staff strives to provide the best information possible, the DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. make no representations or warranties, either express or implied, concerning the accuracy, completeness, reliability or suitability of the information. The DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. disclaim all liability of any kind arising out of your use or misuse of the information contained or referenced on DSIRE Web pages.

Copyright 2014 - 2015 North Carolina State University, under NREL Subcontract No. XEU-0-99515-01. Permission granted only for personal or educational use, or for use by or on behalf of the U.S. government. North Carolina State University prohibits the unauthorized display, reproduction, sale, and/or distribution of all or portions of the content of the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) without prior, written consent.