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Free improvements offered

ComEd, Nicor help with energy efficiency for local small businesses

STERLING – Small businesses in Sterling, Dixon and Oregon have an opportunity to become more energy efficient, free of charge.

ComEd and Nicor Gas’s Small Business Energy Savings program is offering free energy assessments and installation of certain energy-saving products.

Small businesses can receive 100 percent off of certain equipment and the cost of installing indoor lighting improvements and lighting controls.

The offer is available only to small businesses in the Dixon, Oregon and Sterling area.

The program provides a free energy assessment and a free, comprehensive report that explains opportunities to improve and become more energy efficient. The report would tell the company what products are available to it for free.

To qualify, businesses must meet several criteria. Among other things, they must use fewer than 60,000 therms of natural gas a year; be owned or managed individually; be a ComEd and Nicor Gas customer; and sign the installation agreement within 21 calendar days of the energy assessment.

The offer is not being extended to franchises, said David Hernandez, senior program manager at ComEd.

“We’re focusing on small mom and pops because they usually don’t have the time nor the resources to do this on their own,” Hernandez said.

Qualifying businesses may upgrade their indoor lighting from T12 to the more efficient T8 for free, Hernandez said. Vending misers, which allow a soda machine to light up only when people are present, are also available for free under the program, Hernandez said.

To make gas use more efficient, qualifying businesses may receive free programmable thermostats and free steam traps, which are usually used by dry cleaners and laundry facilities, Hernandez said.

To sign up

ComEd and Nicor are offering energy assessments and free energy-saving equipment to certain small businesses in Sterling, Dixon and Oregon.

Businesses must sign up by March 1 at Biz or 888-806-2273.

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