Small Business Initiative – Frequently Asked Questions
How long has the program been around?
Efficiency Maine has been offering this initiative since 2013. Since then we have completed hundreds of projects in Aroostook County, Western Maine, along Rt. 302 from Raymond to Fryeburg, and in Sanford and the surrounding towns.
How many businesses have you worked with in Maine?
Efficiency Maine has helped thousands of businesses save on energy costs. We have programs tailored to the needs of all commercial, industrial, and residential customers in Maine.
How long will my project take?
Every project is different, but most take three to six weeks to complete once a lighting assessment is done.
How much money will I be paying out of pocket?
The typical out-of-pocket expense for a business owner is between 20 and 30 percent of total project cost. These expenses will be offset by the ongoing savings from your energy efficiency upgrade.
How do you calculate my energy savings?
We use an energy assessment tool that performs a cost-benefit analysis. The analysis considers your old fixtures/lamps, the proposed new fixtures/lamps, and how often your lights are in use.
Is there any obligation to proceed with work if I have a lighting assessment?
No, the lighting assessment is free with no obligation to complete a project. If you’d like to move forward after the assessment has been completed and a lighting project has been developed, you will be asked to sign a scope of work.
How and when do I pay for my share of the project?
Payment agreements are made between the contractor and the customer.
Yes, I’m interested (and eligible). What are the next steps?
We will assign your business to one of our participating contractors. They will reach out to you, usually within two weeks, to set up a time for the lighting assessment. After the assessment is completed, the contractor will share a proposed scope of work and estimated energy savings. If you would like to move forward with the lighting upgrade, materials will be ordered. Once the materials are available the project will be scheduled.
Why do you need my electric bill?
We use the bill to verify that your business is a year-round, “Small General Service” (SGS) customer.
How does Efficiency Maine choose contactors?
Efficiency Maine works with hundreds of contractors (Qualified Partners) across the state. A subset of interested local Qualified Partners install the LEDs for this program.
My contractor is not listed, can I use my own contractor?
We’d be happy to reach out to them to see if they’d like to participate. If they are not interested, we will assign one for you.
Can I do the installation myself?
No, this initiative is not available to businesses that prefer to self-install new lamps and lighting fixtures
What types of lights are eligible for upgrade through SBI?
The Small Business Initiative provides incentives for both interior and exterior LED retrofit kits, new LED high/low bay fixtures, LED linear luminaire replacements, screw-in LED bulbs, recessed/surface/pendant-mounted LED downlights, exterior wall packs, and pole lights to name some of the most common measures. However, if you have questions about what will be installed at your facility we suggest asking the contractor when they perform your free lighting assessment.
What happens to the old lights and fixtures?
They are responsibly disposed of by our contractors.
Where do the lighting products come from?
Efficiency Maine has worked with a local lighting distributor to obtain the products at a competitive cost.