Free LEDs still available

As an Accredited partner under the VEU program (Victorian Energy Upgrades, previously called VEET – the Victorian Energy Efficiency Target), Energy Makeovers is proud to offer subsidised and free LED upgrades through the Victorian Government’s energy efficiency incentive to businesses and homes around the state of Victoria. We also offer subsidised upgrades to properties around Sydney through a similar program available in NSW, called HEER (the Home Energy Efficiency Retrofit program).

But how do these programs work and are free lighting upgrades still available?

The Victorian Government launched a program to decrease energy bills and energy consumption of Victorian homes and businesses and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by incentivising energy-efficient upgrades such as retrofitting lighting with energy-efficient lights like LED. A popular example of this initiative is the opportunity to upgrade halogen downlights to LED downlights in properties around the state, both commercial and residential.

The program was launched and is managed by the Essential Services Commission (ESC) and was originally titled the VEET scheme (Victorian Energy Efficiency Target). Back in 2017, VEET was rebranded and the program is now called VEU (Victorian Energy Upgrades). Downlight upgrades are not the only incentivised upgrades as the following lights are also eligible for upgrades: fluorescent tubes (in businesses), high bays (in businesses), candle-style bulbs, incandescents, CFLs and shop lights (in businesses).

Why LEDs?

LED lights are more efficient than older types of lamps and globes. Here is some more information about why LEDs are more efficient. LEDs are also the most advanced type of lighting technology available on the market (for now!) and we have done a fact check on LED technology here. So, if you upgrade your home or business to the market’s most efficient and most advanced lighting technology available you’ll future proof your property and reduce your energy demands.

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The VEU program aims to encourage households and businesses to find ways to use energy more efficiently – thus reducing energy bills and the carbon footprint of the state and, collectively, the country. The program was designed to make these energy efficiency improvements more affordable, thus more tempting to families and businesses by subsidising the cost of upgrading your lighting.

Lights you can upgrade

Above are some of the types of lights available for upgrade under the VEU program including candle-style globes, incandescent bulbs (both bayonet and screw), CFLs and halogen downlights. We can even upgrade bulbs used in lamps around homes, like your bedside lamp! Not pictured are highbays and shoplights.

Both versions of the program (residential and commercial) incentivised energy efficiency upgrades through the use of VEECs (Victorian Energy Efficiency Certificates). Companies like us (Energy Makeovers) trade these certificates on your behalf where they’re purchased by energy retailers that are obligated under state regulations to purchase VEECs and offset their carbon emissions. This means the program is not funded by taxpayers (a question we’re often asked), it’s funded by energy retailers that are obligated to purchase these certificates. We have more information on how the costs of the VEU program are covered. And information on how the NSW HEER program is funded.

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Are Victorian homes and businesses still eligible for free LED upgrades?

The answer is yes and we still offer this service for a limited time. LED lighting retrofits have been incredibly popular and have even expanded into states like NSW. We’re often booked weeks in advance, so we’d recommend enquiring as soon as you’ve made the decision to upgrade your home or business. There are some terms and conditions such as eligibility requirements and a minimum number of lights to upgrade in order to receive an upgrade completely free (if you don’t have the minimum number required, that doesn’t mean we can’t service your property, it just means there may be an additional installation charge added). There are also a range of products that are eligible for the upgrade including CFLs, fluorescent tubes, halogen downlights and high bay lights; it depends on your property (and if it’s a business – what activity that business undertakes, including the number of hours in a 24 hour period the lights are on) so it’s best to give us a call to discuss (1300 788 776) or view our information pages for homes or for businesses. We do have a helpful list on the types of lights that are eligible for an upgrade to LED in homes here.

A question we’re often asked is whether a homeowner or business manager can simply purchase their own lights, install them and claim for the subsidies without using an Accredited Partner like Energy Makeovers, and unfortunately, you can’t. Here’s some information on why you can’t upgrade your own lights to LED under the program. This also means that we’re unable to simply send you the lights and let you install them in your property. It is essential that an electrician from our company attends your property, completes the upgrade, removes the old globes so we can recycle them safely and we must also take photos of your fittings with the new LEDs in place to comply with regulations dictated by the VEU program. We have written a post on why we take pictures of light fittings with LEDs in. Similarly, we’re also unable to upgrade fittings with no globes in them.

 

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We also have some helpful information on the colour spectrum of lights and which colour downlights will be right for your home or business.

 

And, if you’re an electrician that offers, or wants to offer LED lighting retrofits to customers but you’re not working with, or directly an Accredited Partner through the VEU program and you’d like to participate in the program and take advantage of the subsidies available for the benefit of your business and/or customers, we can help electricians participate in VEU to claim subsidies. We have a very simple process available wherein we work with electricians throughout the state to become an active participant in the program and become eligible for these subsidies. We even offer one of the fastest processing and payment times available in the market.

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