DC Sustainable Energy Utility
Your Guide to Green


Food service equipment can consume a lot of energy and water—sometimes needlessly. Businesses looking to save should look for ENERGY STAR®-qualified equipment that can help them cut down on their energy and water costs.

In addition to lowering energy costs, efficiency improvements can enhance the comfort, appearance, and ambiance of your restaurant, cafeteria, or kitchen for your guests and staff. Simple changes to your kitchen, such as locating cooking line appliances as close to the hood as possible, fixing water leaks, and setting water heaters to proper temperatures can save energy with simply the investment of time. Rebates for qualified equipment are now available from the DCSEU.

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Custom Rebates

Not sure where to start? Don't see a rebate listed for your equipment? The DCSEU's Account Management team can help you make the right choice for your business. Find out more about custom rebates.

Success Stories

See how the DCSEU is helping residents and businesses across the District save money and energy.

Serving Up Savings at Union Kitchen

Serving Up Savings at Union Kitchen

Working with the DCSEU, Union Kitchen saved thousands of dollars. The result: happier chefs, lower energy bills for years to come, and a trusted partner to turn to for future energy decisions.

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Food Service Equipment Rebate
Steam Cooker (gas) $750
Steam Cooker (electric) $400
Hot Food Holding Cabinet (electric) $300
Combination Oven (gas) $750
Combination Oven (electric) $600
Convection Oven (gas) $550
Convection Oven (electric)  $225
Griddle (gas) $300
Griddle (electric) $250
Fryer (gas) $500
Fryer (electric) $150
Spray Rinse Valve (≤ 1.6 GPM)
Vending Equipment Rebate
Vending Machine Controllers $50
 Plug-Load Occupancy Sensor*

*Plug-load refers to anything that is plugged into an electrical outlet. A plug load sensor is either a power strip with a built-in occupancy sensor or a special power strip/surge protector that has an occupancy sensor that plugs into the strip.


All projects must be submitted for pre-approval prior to the purchase of equipment. Applications that are not submitted for pre-approval are not guaranteed to receive rebates from the DCSEU.

Total rebates are limited to $50,000 per location, per fiscal year.

Projects must involve a facility improvement that results in a permanent reduction in electrical and or/natural gas energy usage (kWh).

Projects that are NOT eligible for rebates through this program include but are not limited to the following:

  • Fuel switching (e.g. electric to gas or gas to electric);
  • Changes in operational and/or maintenance practices, or simple control modifications not involving capital expenditure;
  • On-site electricity generation;
  • Projects focused primarily on power factor improvement;
  • Projects that involve peak-shifting (time of day savings) (and not kWh savings);
  • Renewable energy projects;

Any products installed at a facility must be sustainable and provide 100% of the energy benefits as stated in the application for a period of at least five (5) years or for the life of the product, whichever is less.  If the customer ceases to be a delivery-service customer of Pepco Holdings, Inc. and/or Washington Gas Light Co., or removes the products or systems at any time during the five-year period or the life of the product, the customer will be required to return a prorated amount of rebate funds to the DCSEU.  Exceptions may apply for customers upgrading to more efficient products at their own expense.

  • All equipment must be new; used or refurbished equipment is NOT eligible rebates.
  • All installed equipment must meet state, federal, or local codes and requirements.
  • Gas equipment installations must be performed by a licensed trade professional in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions and District of Columbia code requirements.
  • Projects must be installed on the municipal utility account listed on the application.

Before you purchase your new food service and vending equipment, make sure it qualifies for DCSEU rebates.


To apply for rebates, carefully follow the steps below:

  1. Download the rebate application (xlsx). Projects must use the current application.
  2. Submit your application for pre-approval.
  3. Receive confirmation of pre-approval and reservation of funds from the DCSEU.
  4. Submit your invoices and other required documents to the DCSEU via BusinessRebates@dcseu.comWithin five days of submitting final documents, you must provide the DCSEU access to your facility for inspection. The purchase and installation of materials must take place during the 90 day reservation period. Materials purchased 6 months prior to receiving pre-approval letter are not eligible for this program.
  5. Receive your rebate check from the DCSEU after your project has been inspected. Please allow up to 60 days for receipt of your rebate.

For questions about equipment rebates, or for questions about embarking on energy efficiency upgrades in your business, please contact the DCSEU at 202-479-2222 or info@dcseu.com.


Energy Benchmarking

By 2014, all District buildings (commercial and multi-family) over 50,000 square feet must use Portfolio Manager to benchmark their energy efficiency and report that score to the city.

DC Sustainable Energy Utility
80 M Street SE, Suite 310, Washington, DC 20003 E info@dcseu.com
P 202-479-2222 F 202-450-1552 Toll-Free: 855-MY-DCSEU (855-693-2738)
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