By Kathryn Menue


BELVIDERE – Nicor Gas representatives came to Belvidere on Thursday, Oct. 29, to discuss smart energy options to the local businesses and home owners in the Boone County community.

The presentation featured smart options for both businesses and home owners to take into account on how to go about improving the quality of their gas features in their homes/businesses along with rebate and incentive options available with making the switch to smarter energy sources.

The presentation began with an overall “simple solution” plan for businesses to study in order to pick the best energy plan for their company.

“EnergySMART, a Nicor Gas program, provides free products and energy efficient recommendations to business owners looking to reduce their energy use,” the presentation stated. “We identify simple solutions to optimize your energy use and boost your bottom line, so you can stay focused on your goal: managing and growing your business.”

The energySMART program Nicor Gas created allows business customers provides simple options for businesses to choose from, so the companies can focus more of their attention on their business.

The process begins with an Energy Advisor visiting businesses to conduct an assessment. From there, the Energy Advisor will install free “energy-saving products.”

These free energy-saving products include “hot water pipe insulation, WaterSense® certified showerheads, Kitchen and bath faucet aerators, water heater temperature setback, pre-rinse spray valves, ENERGY STAR® certified CFLs (in living units only), programmable thermostats, and programmable thermostat reset.

Then, the Energy Advisor can recommend a customized action plan and continue to work with the business to have “ongoing support” to ensure the company has all of the “technical assistance” they need with their “energy efficient projects.”

The only requirements needed for this plan is for businesses to be non-publicly-funded Nicor customers. To schedule an appointment, call (877) 886-4239, so the business can get started in choosing a contractor, applying for rebates, and enjoying the savings.

Rebates and incentives

To help reduce costs in switching to a more energy efficient system, Nicor Gas also has rebate and incentive options available for homeowners and businesses.

Available rebates include space heating equipment, water heating equipment, commercial kitchen equipment, and steam traps.

Rebates for homes specifically include high-efficiency furnaces, high-efficiency boilers, programmable thermostats, home and water heating packages, and air sealing and insulation.

The rebate plans are simple to follow; just find a contractor, install energy efficient products, and start saving by submitting rebate application forms.

Plus, Nicor Gas customers can also save through instant discounts through rebates such as “air sealing and insulation improvement rebates” where the contractor will apply the rebate directly to the invoice.

Multi-family homes, renters, and landlords can save through these rebate options too.

If nothing else works, customers can receive a loan for energy efficient products from Nicor Gas through

“Any project that reduces your therm consumption, but doesn’t qualify for the equipment mentioned above, may qualify for a custom incentive,” the presentation stated. “Contact us at (312) 344-1569 or if you’re interested in custom incentives.”

If rebate options aren’t enough or aren’t suited for a home or company’s needs, then Nicor Gas also has incentive programs set in place for customers.

“Based on the therms saved from the energy efficiency project, custom incentives are available for projects that are not covered by existing rebates,” the presentation stated. “Eligible projects involve improvements to existing systems or processes which result in a permanent reduction in natural gas usage.”

These incentives include different plans for regular customers, multi-family, and small businesses. Customers can start the incentive process by completing and submitting the pre-approval application, completing the pre-installation inspection, obtaining pre-approval notice, installing your project, completing and submitting the final application, completing the post-installation inspection, and obtaining a final approval and collecting your incentive.

For more information on these Nicor Gas energy saving options, call (312) 344-1569 or go online to reach them by email at

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