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Don't flush this deal down the loo

Thousands of homeowners in Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam have already traded in their porcelain potties for a water-saving toilet. - THINKSTOCK
Thousands of homeowners in Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam have already traded in their porcelain potties for a water-saving toilet.
— image credit: THINKSTOCK

Trade in your old bog, loo or dunny — that's toilet to most of us — and you can get a $100 rebate.

Thousands of homeowners in Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam have already traded in their porcelain potties for a water-saving toilet. But the cities are continuing to promote the switch in the hopes of saving water and utility costs.

Those old toilets suck up water like sponges — about 13 to 20 litres of water compared to the new high-efficiency lavs that use about 4.8 litres per flush.

But people who want to trade in their old toilets had better get a move on.

Port Coquitlam has a Jan. 31deadline for owners of single-family homes and units in multi-family complexes to get in their applications to get a break on their 2014 utility fees. (The homes must be built before September 2005, there is a maximum of two toilet rebates per household and you have to bring in the old toilet to seal the deal.)

Coquitlam doesn't have a deadline — its program is ongoing — but applications are processed on a first-come, first-served basis for the rebate of $100 for each older toilet (maximum two per household) that is replaced with a new high-efficiency model.

In Coquitlam, you'll need a receipt for the ultra low-flow toilet plus a photograph of the old toilet in place, a photograph of the old toilet removed and the tank broken, and a photo of the new 4.8 (single flush) or 4.1/6 litre (dual flush) toilet in place. You also have to dispose of your own toilet.

Figures show Coquitlam and PoCo residents have been taking the plunge on replacing their older toilets in significant numbers. Coquitlam has approved 4,569 toilet replacements since the program started in 2004, including approximately 516 in 2013, with $456,900 in rebates issued to homeowners. PoCo has spent $221,600 on its program, which also allows people to replace their old shower heads, rebating 276 toilet replacements in 2013 and 354 in 2012. PoCo's program has been running since 2005.

The two cities believe the program will benefit taxpayers in the long run, with Coquitlam saving $160 in utility costs over a 10-year span for each $100 rebate due to reduced water consumption and deferred infrastructure and wastewater treatment costs, while PoCo expects to save $128.

Port Moody doesn't have a toilet-replacement program.

COMING UP

Port Coquitlam is accepting bathroom fixture rebate applications until Jan. 31, 2014 for rebate credits on 2014 utility taxes. Coquitlam is accepting applications on a first come, first-served basis.

dstrandberg@tricitynews.com

 

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