Get the Dish on Ways You Can Save

From refrigeration to cooking equipment, restaurants consume more energy per square inch than any other commercial operations – up to 7x more! Focus on Energy helps businesses, like yours, identify and install energy efficient upgrades to cut operating costs and save energy. Enhance your bottom line and customers’ dining experience.

Your Top Opportunities:

Your facility may be eligible to receive enhanced incentives on some of these opportunities through the Small Business Program.  Visit the Small Business Program site to learn more.


Save Energy. Smarter. 

You’re busy. We make it simple to apply for incentives and achieve energy savings by assisting you every step of the way. Email or call us at 800.762.7077 to find out how you can get started today.


New Construction - Design Assistance Resources


How the Design Assistance Process Works

  • Use our Enrollment Wizard early in design, to submit your contact and project information, then instantly see the incentives potential for your project

  • Once the project application is approved and the customer/design team provides design drawings and narratives, a meeting is scheduled to review the whole building estimated energy performance

  • The integrated effect of multiple energy models are analyzed simultaneously and in real-time, utilizing the Net Energy Optimizer (NEO®) tool, to determine the net effect on energy use, costs, and potential program incentives

  • NEO supports a wide variety of different mechanical systems and hundreds of whole building refinement options, allowing design teams and owners to optimize choices for their specific building type and customize the mix of space uses

  • Results for each individual measure, three “bundles” and three selected HVAC scenarios are then presented to assist in optimizing the final building design

  • Once the design has been finalized, submittals are provided to the Design Assistance Team for verification; customer incentives are paid upon building construction completion


Eligibility & Requirements

  • Potential building types include all commercial and industrial buildings as well as multifamily buildings with four or more units.
  • Buildings must be served by a participating Wisconsin electric or natural gas utility.
  • New buildings include free-standing buildings, adaptive reuse, substantial renovations and major additions to existing buildings.
  • The minimum project size is 5,000 square feet for typical building uses. Additional requirements may apply for mixed-use space or some type of facilities.
  • Other qualification criteria may be established on a case-by-case basis. Projects must also meet the program timing requirements to qualify.

How to Receive Incentives

  • Use our Enrollment Wizard early in design, to submit your contact and project information.
  • A Design Assistance Program representative will contact you within two business days to discuss your project and determine if your building is a good fit for the program.
  • Once accepted into the program, you’ll receive a customized analysis to assist with energy efficiency decisions and information regarding potential owner incentives. Design team incentives are provided upon completion of the analysis.
  • After the building has been completed, the implementation of the energy efficiency measures will be verified by Focus on Energy. At this time, the building owner will receive financial incentives.

Restaurants: Your Top Opportunities


High Performance Troffers (2x4 or 2x2)

Replacing an existing 3-4 lamp T12 system with a 2 lamp high performance troffer system can achieve an energy reduction of 55% to 70% per fixture on a fixture for fixture replacement project. 2x2 LED troffers can replace existing 2x2 fluorescent fixtures with 2 or more T8, T12 or FT (2’ biax) lamps and can use up to 60% less wattage than the existing fixtures.

LED Parking Lot Lighting

LED parking lot lighting can be dimmed or turned off when not needed, and instantly turned on when called for by a motion sensor. Retail and commercial parking lot LED lighting systems can operate at 60% to 70% fewer watts compared to conventional HID. Energy savings can exceed 80% if switching and dimming are used, and payback periods are commonly less than five years.

ECM Evaporator Fan Motors

Standard Shaded Pole (SP) and Permanent Split Capacitor (PSC) motors are inefficient, ranging from 20% to 40%, using most of their energy to create heat that is then added to the refrigerated space. Electronically Commutated Motors (ECMs) are much more efficient, roughly 75%, which creates less heat and results in motor and refrigeration energy savings. In addition to lowering energy usage, ECMs run quieter and will reduce the noise of the walk-in coolers and freezers. The typical payback for replacing Shaded Pole motors with ECMs is approximately one year.

Commercial Kitchen Equipment

ENERGY STAR has designated models that earn the ENERGY STAR label as being the most energy efficient models on the market, ranging anywhere from 10%-70% more efficient than standard models. Typically the incremental cost associated with purchasing more efficient models can be paid back in less than a year through the energy savings your restaurant will achieve with the selection of ENERGY STAR qualifying equipment.

Demand Control Kitchen Ventilation (DCKV) Systems

DCKV systems limit fan speeds of kitchen exhaust hoods during slow cooking periods or when kitchen appliances are idling. Energy savings result from a reduction in fan energy along with reduced heating and cooling costs from a reduction in tempered air leaving the kitchen through the exhaust hood. DCKV systems are ideal for commercial kitchens that operate at least 10 hours per day and 300 days per year, have a cooking line of 12 feet or more, and are in a hotl or cold climate.


Small Business Program Information