GE Appliances is reporting that its GeoSpring Hybrid Water Heater qualifies for incentives that bring its suggested retail purchase price of $1299 down to $49 for qualified residents in the Orlando area.
The GeoSpring water heater uses a heat pump (in combination with traditional electric elements) to pull heat from surrounding air and transfer it to the tank. It is designed to produce the same amount of hot water as a traditional water heater while using up to 62% less energy.
Through Feb. 20, participating retailers in the Orlando area are offering the GeoSpring for the sale price of $999. Qualified Orlando area homeowners will get a $650 rebate from the Orlando Utilities Commission plus a $300 federal tax credit to apply to the purchase of the water heater.
The price does not include taxes and installation charges - and professional installation is required to qualify for many utility rebates.
But GE points out that the unit is designed with the same water and electrical connections as a standard electric water heater, which should mean no installation price premium. Once installed, GE said the GeoSpring's high efficiency can save consumers, on average, $325 a year in energy costs, or $3,000 over 10 years.
Not a bad deal at all for Orlando homeowners.
The very first GeoSprings were made in China, but in February of 2012 GE opened a new plant in Louisville, KY, to make the water heaters. The plant was the first new appliance plant on the Appliance Park manufacturing campus in 50-years.
The GeoSpring plant was also a kind of flagship for a fleet of new and expanding GE Appliance plants in the United States, with a total investment of more than $1 billion between 2009 and 2014. General Electric Company expects the new and revamped appliance plants will create 1300 new jobs in the United States by 2014.
GE has been widely applauded for its investment in keeping appliance manufacturing in the United States and even brining it back from outside the country. Vice President Joe Biden, during a speech to Appliance Park workers in the summer of 2010, called GE's efforts exemplary of the need to re-invigorate U.S. manufacturing with advanced green technology.
The new appliances are being developed with an emphasis on meeting environmental needs. The hybrid water heater is one example. Refrigerators made at another new Appliance Park plant, which opened just a month after the GeoSpring plant, use a greener foam insulating process and reduce the overall CO2 or greenhouse gas emissions at the site.
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