As part of the annual review of criteria, representatives of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Energy gathered and held a webinar on September 11 to go over proposals for the ENERGY STAR Most Efficient 2019 product categories. The Most Efficient label recognizes the “best of the best” across fourteen ENERGY STAR product categories, with ~3000 models represented across 155 partners. Through joint promotions with utility partners and retailer incentives, the Most Efficient label helps to guide environmentally conscious early adopters toward the most energy efficient products.
Regarding specific product categories, current criteria are largely maintained with some updates noted below:
With respect to appliances, current performance criteria for refrigerators are maintained for top-freezer product types (i.e. with ≥ 10% more efficiency than the federal minimum) and updated for side-by-side or bottom-freezer product types (i.e. with ≥ 20% more efficiency than the federal minimum). For clothes washers, current energy and water criteria are maintained; however, the proposal sets a minimum cleaning performance level (i.e. total cleaning score of ≥ 85). For dishwashers, current 2018 criteria for standard models are maintained as well as the minimum per cycle cleaning index. For clothes dryers, current criteria are kept with one administrative change on heat pumps or hybrid heat pumps to allow for easier identification on the qualified products list.
For the general HVAC category, there are no changes for the system status and message criteria or the narrative guide, but requirements for variable capacity are proposed in 2019 for centrally ducted air conditioning and air source heat pumps. For ceiling fans, 2018 performance levels are maintained, where fan efficiency requirements depend on the blade span, but older metrics are dropped in favor of DOE test methods. For ventilation fans, criteria for bath/utility room and in-line fans are maintained. Efficiency criteria, however, will be added for in-line fans with filters, and sound-level criteria will be added for bath/utility room fans.
Regarding electronics, the total energy consumption for computer monitors is maintained with one minor revision, where a resolution allowance is applied instead of a resolution cap at 5 megapixels. For televisions, the category returns to ENERGY STAR Most Efficient 2019. Proposals have been introduced for HD and UHD in order to capture the top ten percent of version 8.0 models.
For furnaces, current performance and system status and messaging criteria are maintained. Similarly, current performance criteria are maintained for both gas-powered and oil-powered boilers. For dehumidifiers, performance criteria are also maintained with a goal to provide nearly equivalent IEP, integrated energy factor, to accommodate version 5.0.
Finally, for residential windows, current U-factor and SHGC criteria are maintained. Coverage is for residential window products only (i.e. no doors, skylights, etc.). Furthermore, verification testing will be required.
The EPA plans to finalize the 2019 criteria in September 2018, and products will be recognized as ENERGY STAR Most Efficient 2019 beginning January 1, 2019.
Webinar slides as well as drafts of the specific 2019 recognition criteria for covered products can be found at the following page: