WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently released a final ruling on its Energy Conservation Program for Certain Industrial Equipment: Energy Conservation Standards and Test Procedures for Commercial Heating, Air Conditioning, and Water Heating Equipment.

The final rule adopts the amended energy efficiency standards in American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) Standard 90.1-2010 for: small, large, and very large water-cooled and evaporatively cooled commercial package air conditioners; variable refrigerant flow water-source heat pumps less than 17,000 Btuh and 135,00 Btuh or greater; and computer room air conditioners.

The final rule also revises the federal efficiency test procedures to incorporate by reference the following: Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) 210/240 – 2008 with Addenda 1 and 2, (small commercial package air conditioning and heating equipment); AHRI 340/360 – 2007 with Addenda 1 and 2 (large and very large commercial package air conditioning and heating equipment); UL 727 – 2006 (commercial warm-air oil furnaces); ANSI Z21.47 – 2006 (commercial warm-air gas furnaces); and ANSI Z21.10.3 – 2011 (commercial water heaters). It also adopts the following industry test procedures: AHRI 1230 – 2012 and Addendum 1 (variable refrigerant flow air conditioners and heat pumps); ASHRAE 127 – 2007 (computer room air conditioners); and AHRI 390 – 2003 (single package vertical air conditioners and single package vertical heat pumps). With two exceptions, the revisions or new procedures for testing are effective 360 days after being published in the DOE’s Federal Register publication. This final ruling was published in the Federal Register on May 16 and will become effective in May 2013. In the cases of variable-refrigerant flow water-source heat pumps less than 17,000 Btuh, and computer room air conditioners less than 65,000 Btuh, the test procedure change is effective on Oct. 29, 2012, which also is the effective date of the respective efficiency requirements for those products. All representations of energy efficiency or energy use for the products covered by those revised or new test procedures made on or after the effective date must be based on testing to the revised or new test procedure.

AHRI has published a table that displays effective dates for the revised or new test procedures, and the revised minimum efficiency standards in the final rule, available at http://bit.ly/LqMVYf. To view the comprehensive AHRI newsletter update on the topic, visit http://bit.ly/K5MXmM.

Publication date: 6/11/2012