Sheet metal & Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association


DOE withdraws pending energy efficiency standards for gas furnaces

Mar 22, 2013

DOE withdraws pending energy efficiency standards for gas furnaces

The U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently agreed to withdraw the pending minimum AFUE (American Fuel Utilization Efficiency) residential furnace energy conservation standards including regional standards for indoor residential non-weatherized gas furnaces.

In January, the government said it would drop the furnace regulations that were due to take effect May 1, 2013.The settlement is pending approval by the U.S. Court of Appeals. If the Court accepts the settlement, 80 percent of annual fuel utilization efficiency-rated equipment would still continue to be legal to sell nationwide. Non-condensing furnaces would also remain legal to install in all states until the DOE writes new regulations.

The Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) is making its voice known to the Court on the proposed regional standards settlement. The AHRI stands behind the proposed settlement, because the agreement, at a minimum, provides certainty for its manufacturer members.

Recently, the Heating, Air-conditioning, and Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI) filed a request to continue the case, with itself substituted in place of the original petitioner, the American Public Gas Association (APGA), saying the settlement does not address all their concerns. AHRI is against continuing the case.

The settlement, as it currently stands, would not impact the regional energy-efficiency regulations for central air conditioners, weatherized furnaces, and heat pumps, which would remain in place, along with the Jan. 1, 2015 compliance date. In addition, standards for non-weatherized oil furnaces are not impacted by the settlement and will become effective as scheduled, May 1, 2013.

For more on the standards agreement and the latest updates visit this link