TurboTax / Tax Calculators & Tips / All Tax Guides / Tax Deductions and Credits / Are Energy Efficient Appliances Tax Deductible?

Are Energy Efficient Appliances Tax Deductible?

Updated for Tax Year 2014


OVERVIEW

In past years, as an incentive to conserve energy at home, the federal government has offered tax credits to homeowners who purchase energy-efficient appliances. The program is known as Energy Star. However, beginning in 2012, the program has mostly expired except for credits geared at the production of residential energy. Learn more about this program and how you may benefit from it.


Since the 1970s, the government has been encouraging Americans to conserve energy, and for good reason. Conserving energy can help reduce our country’s dependence on foreign oil, helps the environment and can save us money. As an incentive to conserve energy at home, the federal government offers tax credits to homeowners who purchase energy-saving improvements. The program is known as Energy Star.

The Energy Star program

The EPA and the Department of Energy have worked together on Energy Star since 1996, in order to promote home and business energy efficiency. According to Energy Star's website, the use of Energy Star approved products -- windows, heating and air-conditioning systems and insulation, for instance -- saved homeowners $17 billion in 2009, and avoided greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to 30 million cars.

Equipment that qualifies for energy tax credits

Residential geothermal heat pumps, wind turbines and solar-power systems installed before the end of 2016 also qualify for a separate 30 percent credit. You can claim this for new or existing buildings, and for your vacation home as well as your primary residence.

A tax credit is better than a tax deduction because you take the money directly off your taxes rather than off your taxable income.

Filing for energy tax credits on your tax return

To claim the credit, you'll need IRS Form 5695. Work out the credit amount on that form then enter it on your 1040. You should keep your receipt for the appliance as well as the Manufacturer's Certification Statement, so you can prove your claim if the IRS ever conducts an audit.

Just remember, you can reduce your taxes with the energy tax credit, but you can't get money back. In other words, if you owe $2,200 and your credit is $3,400, you can only claim $2,200 this year. However, with the credit involving turbines and heat pumps, the remaining $1,200 could be carried over to the following year.

When you use TurboTax to prepare your taxes, we'll ask simple questions to see which credits you can claim, and we'll fill in all the right forms for you.

Get every deduction you deserve

TurboTax Deluxe searches more than 350 tax deductions and credits so you get your maximum refund, guaranteed.

For only $54.99*
Start for Free

The above article is intended to provide generalized financial information designed to educate a broad segment of the public; it does not give personalized tax, investment, legal, or other business and professional advice. Before taking any action, you should always seek the assistance of a professional who knows your particular situation for advice on taxes, your investments, the law, or any other business and professional matters that affect you and/or your business.

* Important Offer Details and Disclosures
  • Try for Free/Pay When You File: TurboTax online and mobile pricing is based on your tax situation and varies by product. Actual prices are determined at the time of print or efile and are subject to change without notice. Special discount offers may not be valid for mobile in-app purchases.
  • TurboTax CD/Download products: Price includes tax preparation and printing of federal tax returns and free federal efile of up to 5 federal tax returns. Additional fees apply for efiling state returns. E-file fees do not apply to New York state returns. Prices subject to change without notice.
  • TurboTax Mobile: Actual prices are determined at the time of print or efile and are subject to change without notice. Come back here before you file to confirm that the price has not changed, especially if it's been a while since you downloaded this app.
  • Anytime, anywhere: Internet access required; standard message and data rates apply to download and use mobile app features and content. TurboTax mobile app devices supported include Android 4.1 and above, iOS 8 on iPhone 4s and above, and iPad 2.
  • Fastest refund possible: Fastest tax refund with efile and direct deposit; tax refund timeframes will vary.
  • Pay for TurboTax out of your federal refund: A $34.99 Refund Processing Service fee applies to this payment method. Prices are subject to change without notice.
  • About our TurboTax Product Experts: Customer service and product support (phone or chat) vary by time of year. Phone support not included with Free Edition.
  • About our credentialed tax experts: Live tax advice service is available for your toughest tax questions; fees may apply. Service, experience levels, hours of operation and availability vary, and are subject to restriction and change without notice. Click here for full terms and conditions. Not available for TurboTax Business customers.
  • Get up to 10% on top of your federal refund: Amazon.com Gift Card offer is for federal refunds only. Limits apply ($2000 per e-card, maximum $10,000 per customer). Offer available only for TurboTax Online (except Federal Free Edition) or CD/download versions sold and shipped, or downloaded directly from Intuit or Amazon. Except as required by law, Amazon.com Gift Cards cannot be canceled, transferred for value or redeemed for cash.

    Amazon.com is not a sponsor of this promotion. Except as required by law, Amazon.com Gift Cards ('GCs') cannot be transferred for value or redeemed for cash. GCs may be used only for purchases of eligible goods at Amazon.com or certain of its affiliated websites. For complete terms and conditions, see www.amazon.com/gc-legal. GCs are issued by ACI Gift Cards, Inc., a Washington corporation. All Amazon ®, ™ & © are IP of Amazon.com or its affiliates. No expiration date or service fees.
  • #1 best-selling tax software: Based on aggregated sales data for all tax year 2013 TurboTax products.
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars: Average based on customer ratings on TurboTax.com for TurboTax Online and CD/download products tax year 2014, as of January 2015.
  • Most Popular: TurboTax Deluxe is our most popular product among TurboTax Online users with more complex tax situations.
  • TurboTax CD/Download priority phone support: Priority phone support for TurboTax CD/Download Premier and Home & Business is accessible exclusively via the TurboTax.com Help Center.
  • Benefit Assist: After you file, TurboTax automatically shows you a full list of government benefits you may qualify for, like Food Stamps or reduced phone & utilities. Plus, we help you apply, saving you time and making it easier than ever to get more money! Estimate based on calculation of Benefit Assist users from tax year 2013 and published reports of average benefit and savings amounts from federal and state programs. Actual amounts and qualifications based on your individual situation; some individuals will not qualify. Feature may not be available for all customers.
  • Simplified State Experience: New, simplified state tax preparation available for most filers.
  • Eligibility for $25 cash back for returning Deluxe customers: Customers who have completed their 2013 taxes in TurboTax Deluxe (CD or download), and have completed their 2014 taxes in either TurboTax Premier or TurboTax Home & Business (CD or download), and apply here before 11:59PM PDT April 20, 2015, are eligible for $25 back. 2014 TurboTax Advantage users are ineligible for this offer. Terms and conditions are subject to change without notice.
  • $0 Upgrade Offer: Valid for customers who filed their 2013 taxes with TurboTax Deluxe (CD or download), completed prior year data transfer this year, and encounter an upgrade to either 2014 TurboTax Premier or 2014 TurboTax Home & Business (CD or download). Valid February 6, 2015 through April 20, 2015. TurboTax Advantage users are ineligible for this offer. This offer may not be combined with our $25 cash back offer. Terms and conditions are subject to change without notice.