As 2013 draws to a close, your opportunity to collect federal tax credits for high-efficiency HVAC upgrades is drawing to an end. On Dec. 31, most of these credits will expire, making new heating and cooling equipment for your house more expensive. If you’re looking to replace your air conditioner or furnace because it’s nearing the end of its service life or because the cost of cooling your house during Fresno’s hot summers is too high, consider taking advantage of these programs:
- $300 credit on high-efficiency air conditioning units. If you install a high-efficiency 16 or better SEER (seasonal energy efficiency ratio) air conditioner, the IRS will credit you for 10 percent of the cost of the upgrade, up to $300, when you file your taxes. Going from a 10 SEER to a 16 SEER unit won’t just get you a credit, though. It also will get you 60 percent more cooling power for every kilowatt-hour of energy you use.
- $50 credit on advanced air circulating fans. These fans are part of furnaces and air conditioners and save energy by distributing air through your ducts more efficiently. To get the credit, the fan should use no more than 2 percent of the power needed to run the equipment.
- Credits on furnaces and hot water heaters. A 95 percent or higher AFUE-rated furnace, which only sends 5 percent of its heat up the chimney, grabs a $150 tax credit, and a 90 percent thermal efficiency water heater carries a $300 credit.
- Generous photovoltaic solar installation credits. The IRS also offers a 30 percent credit on the total cost of installing a qualified solar or geothermal system in a residence. Given Fresno’s sunny skies, a solar system will greatly reduce your electric bills. These alternative energy tax credits run through the end of 2016, although there’s no reason to wait to start saving money.
Tax credits for conventional HVAC upgrades are easy to claim. All you have to do is have the qualifying equipment installed in your primary home before the end of the year, and file Form 5695 with your tax return. If you’d like to learn more about the tax credit and about how you can upgrade your systems, save power and save money, contact Donald P. Dick Air Conditioning for more information.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Fresno, California area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about tax credits and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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