Rebate is going down the toilet

Today’s post will have to be brief, because I’ve got to get to the post office. If  Matt and I don’t get our rebate form postmarked today, we’ll have to say goodbye to the $75 rebate we qualify for. Not “a bientot”, but goodbye forever.

Why? Because the City of Toronto voted last week to cancel a very common and eco-friendly program. The deal is, you replace an old, inefficient 13-litre-flush toilet with a water-conserving 4.5 or 6-litre toilet, and the city sends you a rebate of $60 to $75, depending on the model. But apparently the new regime (led by the controversial Rob Ford) has decided that the program is too expensive for the city to continue, so they’re putting on the brakes. As of end of business today.

It seems to be working out for us so far. Let me backtrack: On Sunday, Matt decided he’d had quite enough of the continually-running toilet in our main-floor bathroom. “I can see if a new flapper will fix it,” said my handy hubby, “but it’ll probably cost $40. And look – toilets are on sale this week at Home Depot!”

Given that the offending toilet is the ony 13-litre job in the house, and is probably costing us big in incremental water use, I agreed that we should go look. As we entered the store, a salesperson said, “Tomorrow’s the last day for the toilet rebate. You can pick up a form at the front. Make sure you get it postmarked on Monday, or they won’t even open it!”

It turns out this was not a sell job (well, maybe it was partly that, but you know what I mean). The program is ending, so if you live in Toronto and want to ditch and money-wasting 13-litre toilet, today is the day!

After much consideration, we decided on a dual-flush American Standard model, which uses less water for #1 (only 3.4 litres) than for #2 (or, as my kids like to say, “It has a pee flush and a poo flush!”).  Regular price: $269. On sale for $184. Subtract the $75 rebate we have coming, and the toilet put us out only $109. That’ll definitely pay for itself over the years, given that the main-floor toilet is the busiest in the house. It also looks pretty nice:

If you happen not to live in Toronto, you may have plenty of time to cash in on similar rebate programs. Click here for a list of energy rebates in your city or province.

Happy flushing!

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