Boilers

Click for more information on DOE regulations and ongoing rulemakings and EPA Energy Star Information about residential boilers.

Department of Energy

The Department of Energy (DOE) has regulated the energy efficiency level of residential boilers since 1987. Residential boilers include gas, electric, and oil-fired boilers that are used to provide central heating to residential dwellings. Boilers heat water, providing either hot water or steam for heating. Steam is distributed via pipes to steam radiators, and hot water can either be distributed via baseboard radiators, radiant floor systems, or can heat air via a coil.

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    Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Boilers

    Summary: The Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 1975 (EPCA), as amended, prescribes energy conservation standards for various consumer products and certain commercial and industrial equipment, including residential boilers. EPCA also requires the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to periodically determine whether more-stringent, amended standards would be technologically feasible and economically justified, and would save a significant amount of energy. In this final rule, DOE is adopting more-stringent energy conservation standards for residential boilers. It has determined that the amended energy conservation standards for these products would result in significant conservation of energy, and are technologically feasible and economically justified.

    Type of Regulation: Energy Conservation Standard

    Rulemaking Link: Rulemaking Webpage

    Docket ID: EERE-2012-BT-STD-0047

    UPDATES:

    Comment Period Close Date: Closed

    Where to Comment: EERE-2012-BT-STD-0047

    Dates: The effective date of this final rule is March 15, 2016. Compliance with the amended standards established for residential boilers in this final rule is required on and after January 15, 2021.

    AHRI Comments to Previous Stages of Rulemaking:

    • 2015-11-20 — AHRI Comments on 2015-03-31 NOPR Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Boilers
    • 2015-09-29 — AHRI Comments on 2015-03-31 NOPR Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Boilers
    • 2015-08-06 — AHRI Comments on 2015-03-31 NOPR Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Boilers
    • 2015-07-01 — AHRI Comments on 2015-03-31 NOPR Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Boilers
    • 2015-04-30 — Transcript U.S. Department of Energy Public Meeting; The Residential Standards Boilers Meeting NOPR
    • 2015-04-24 — AHRI Comments on 2015-03-31 Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Boilers
    • 2013-03-13 — AHRI Comments on 2014-02-11 Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Boilers
    • 2013-03-28 — AHRI Comment on 2013-02-11 Framework Document Energy Efficiency Program for Consumer Products: Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Boilers

    Staff Contact: Frank Stanonik

    Standard Level

    Current Standard:

    Residential boilers manufactured and distributed in commerce, as defined by 42 U.S.C. 6291 (16), must meet the energy conservation standards specified in the Code of Federal Regulations, 10 CFR 430.32(e)(2).

    Residential boilers manufactured on or after September 1, 2012, shall not have an Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) of less than the following and must comply with the following design requirements:

    Table 1. Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Boilers
    On or After September 1, 2012

    Boiler Product Class

    AFUE1(percent)

    Design Requirements

    (A) Gas-fired hot water boiler

    82

    Constant burning pilot not permitted. Automatic means for adjusting temperature required (except for boilers equipped with tankless domestic water heating coils).

    (B) Gas-fired steam boiler

    80

    Constant burning pilot not permitted.

    (C) Oil-fired hot water boiler

    84

    Automatic means for adjusting temperature required (except for boilers equipped with tankless domestic water heating coils).

    (D) Oil-fired steam boiler

    82

    None

    (E) Electric hot water boiler

    None

    Automatic means for adjusting temperature required (except for boilers equipped with tankless domestic water heating coils).

     

    Links

    To determine compliance with DOE standards, manufacturers must follow the test procedure methods specified at Appendix N to Subpart B of 10 CFR 430 for residential boilers.

    AHRI comments to rulemaking:

    For further guidance or to submit questions related to the implementation of this test procedure, visit the Guidance and Frequently Asked Questions page.

    EPA ENERGY STAR

    Current Product Specifications:

    Boilers Program Requirements Version 3.0

    In Development:

    There are no new versions currently in development.

    Applying for Energy Star:

    To qualify a new product, contact an EPA-recognized Certification Body (CB) to have the product's performance certified. A list of EPA-recognized CBs, as well as an overview of EPA's third-party certification procedures, is available at Third-Party Certification.

    More Information:

    Energy Star Boilers Website