Energy Trust Help

Have a question about Energy Trust, our cash incentives or services we offer? We're here to help. We put together a collection of answers to the most commonly asked questions, covering topics from solar to commercial buildings and everything in between. And if you don't find the info you're looking for, give us a call at 1.866.368.7878 or email us at

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What rebates or incentives are available for solar?

Energy Trust of Oregon provides solar electric cash incentives for Oregon customers of Portland General Electric and Pacific Power.

Some public utility districts and electric co-ops also offer solar rebates.

Tax credits are available from the Oregon Department of Energy and the federal government.

PGE, Pacific Power and Idaho Power pay customers who participate in feed-in tariff incentive program.

Category: Solar, Most Popular

How much does solar cost?

For a solar electric system, the cost depends on the size of the system and the ease of installation, with an average cost range of $6,000–$8,000 for each kilowatt (kW) of capacity, with an average size of 3 kW. However, incentives and tax credits can cover up to 75 percent of the cost.

The best way to estimate what a system would cost you, and learn what incentives and tax credits you can claim, is to contact several Energy Trust solar trade ally contractors for a bid. All trade ally contractors attend trainings and are eligible to offer Energy Trust cash incentives.

Category: Solar, Most Popular

Can I receive an incentive for buying an ENERGY STAR certified home?

No. Energy Trust works with builders to help them build more energy-efficient homes and pays incentives directly to the builder.

Category: New Home Construction, Most Popular

How do I start a Solarize project in my neighborhood or community?

If there isn’t an active Solarize project in your community, you could be the spark to get it started. Begin by contacting your local government, neighborhood association or other community-based organization to express your interest in helping your community go solar. The first Solarize project took root with just one person who took the initiative to plant the seed.

Check out the Solarize Guidebook for advice and pointers on how to structure a project and feedback gathered from other Solarize projects.  

Category: Solar, Most Popular

Does solar work in Oregon?

Yes! Thousands of Oregon homes and businesses have installed solar electric, solar water heating or solar pool heating systems. Hundreds of those are in Portland. The Willamette Valley gets as much sun annually as the national average.

Category: Solar, Most Popular

Does Energy Trust recycle appliances other than refrigerators and freezers?

No. We offer free pickup and incentives for working fridges and freezers only. To recycle other appliances or non-working fridges or freezers, contact your local waste management provider. In the Portland metro area, call Metro Recycling Information at 503.234.3000 or visit their website.

Category: Home Appliances, Most Popular

If I install my own insulation can I receive a cash incentive?

You can install your own attic/ceiling and floor insulation and apply for an incentive as long as you follow Energy Trust installation guidelines. Wall and duct insulation must be installed by a qualified contractor to be eligible for incentives. 

Category: Home Improvements, Most Popular

Do I need to have an energy audit done before I can receive Energy Trust incentives?

No. If you know what energy-saving improvements you want to make, you can hire a trade ally contractor to do the work. The contractor can also help you apply for cash incentives. However, if you need help deciding which improvements will save the most energy in your home, we invite you to start with our free online Home Energy Profile

Category: Home Improvements, Most Popular

How is Energy Trust funded?

Energy Trust services are funded by customers of Portland General Electric, Pacific Power, NW Natural and Cascade Natural Gas through a small percentage charge on their utility bills. To learn more about our funding structure, click here.

Category: General, Most Popular

Who is Energy Trust?

Energy Trust of Oregon is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to helping utility customers invest in and benefit from energy efficiency and clean, renewable energy. Energy Trust began serving Oregonians in 2002 and expanded into southwest Washington in 2009.

Our services and cash incentives help utility ratepayers make improvements to save energy and manage costs in their homes, businesses and communities.

To learn more about Energy Trust, click here.


Category: General, Most Popular