WASHINGTON - The Energy Star label for refrigerated vending machines is now available for the thousands of machines rebuilt and re-installed with more efficient components, announced the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The new Energy Star specification is expected to save end users more than $2 million in the first year alone.

Initially, Energy Star qualified rebuilt machines will potentially be an average of 40 percent more efficient than conventional models, the EPA said. Each machine can save end users an average of 1,600 kWh and $130 a year on their utility bill. On July 1, 2007, when more stringent Energy Star requirements become effective, Energy Star qualified rebuilt vending machines will potentially be 50 percent more efficient than conventional models and savings can increase to 1,900 kWh and $150 a year per machine.

Over the next five years, the specification will save almost $40 million and avoid greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to the emissions of more than 50,000 cars, said the EPA.

Today, more than 3 million refrigerated beverage vending machines are installed and operating within the United States. These machines typically run 24 hours a day and collectively consume more than 10 billion kWh/year. Brand-new refrigerated vending machines that meet Energy Star qualifications have been eligible to use the Energy Star label since 2004.

Rebuilt machines represent a large portion of vending machines placed on-site each year, noted the EPA. Every vending machine undergoes a refurbishment process at least two to three times during its lifetime. Refurbishment includes non-energy related changes such as fixing any damages or installing new side/front panels or a new coin box. The refurbishment process also provides an opportunity to rebuild the machine using energy-efficient upgrades such as a new high-efficiency compressor, evaporator fan, and/or lighting system.

For more information about Energy Star and the rebuilt vending machine specification, visit www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=revisions.rebuilt_vending_spec.

Publication date: 10/02/2006