New York Governor George E. Pataki (R) has announced that more than 20,000 older, inefficient room air conditioners in the state have been exchanged for Energy Star®-rated air conditioners, to maximize energy efficiency.

The replacement is expected to reduce electricity demand by approximately 6,000 kW, an amount that could power up to 2,000 homes.

“Our Keep Cool/Energy Star program is already helping thousands of New Yorkers conserve energy, reduce their monthly power bills, and protect our environment,” said Pataki. “This terrific initiative makes it easy for homeowners throughout New York to save money and reduce energy consumption, and I strongly encourage everyone to take full advantage of it.”

The effort, which was initiated on May 1 by the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority (NYSERDA), is designed to help New York residents reduce their utility bills as well as the environmental impact associated with the energy consumed by air conditioners.

The program offers a $75.00 rebate to those who turn in a working air conditioner and purchase an Energy Star unit to replace it. The program initially focused on establishing a network of retailers that could participate by selling Energy Star room air conditioners and accepting the older units.

Useful parts from the older units are recycled. A check is sent to participating customers four to six weeks after their purchase.

“Energy Star-rated air conditioners are at least 20 percent more efficient than required by federal standards. Because we are exchanging older air conditioners with brand new energy-efficient models, the level of energy savings that customers will see is even greater than 20 percent. Keep Cool is one piece of a comprehensive approach Governor Pataki has endorsed to maintain grid reliability this summer, preserve the environment, and help New Yorkers address concerns over energy costs,” stated NYSERDA’s Timothy S. Carey.

Information is available from NYSERDA on the Keep Cool air conditioner program, energy-saving tips to further reduce costs for residential customers, and how to obtain home energy audits. These audits can identify numerous areas in the home where additional energy can be saved, and provide access to reduced-interest loans for customers following up on energy-saving measures recommended by the audit.

The $100.00 cost for the audit is waived if customers choose to implement the energy-efficiency improvements.

The Keep Cool program’s toll-free hotline is 877-697-6278. The website is

This report provides information for contractors living in the North Mid-Atlantic region of the United States. This includes Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New York. If you have information from this region, please contact Greg Mazurkiewicz at 810-296-9580; 810-296-9581 (fax); or (e-mail).

Publication date: 09/10/2001