Department of Energy

The Department of Energy (DOE) has regulated the energy efficiency level of residential furnaces since 1987. Residential furnaces include gas, electric, and oil-fired furnaces that are used to provide central heating to residential dwellings. Furnaces heat air and distribute the heated air through the house using ducts.

    Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Non-weatherized Gas Furnaces

    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 furnaces. EPCA also requires the DOE to periodically determine whether more-stringent amended standards would be technologically feasible and economically justified and would save a significant amount of energy. DOE is amending its energy conservation standards for residential non-weatherized gas furnaces and mobile home gas furnaces in partial fulfillment of a court-ordered remand of DOE's 2011 rulemaking for these products.

    Type of Regulation: Energy Conservation Standard

    Rulemaking Link: Rulemaking Webpage

    Docket ID: EERE-2014-BT-STD-0031

    Updates:

    Comment Period Close Date: Nov 22, 2016

    Where to Comment: EERE-2014-BT-STD-0031

    AHRI Comments to Previous Stages of Rulemaking:

    • 2015-11-06 — Supplemental Comments in Response to the Reopening of Comment Period for the Notice of Data Availability (NODA)
    • 2015-10-14 — Comment Response to the Published NODA, includes attachments
    • 2015-07-10 — Comment Response to Published Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR) and Announcement of Public Meeting
    • 2015-04-13 — Transcript: U.S. Department of Energy Public Meeting: The Energy Conservation Standards For Residential Furnaces
    • 2015-04-07 — AHRI Questions: Energy Conservation Program for Consumer Products: Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Furnaces; Notice of proposed rulemaking and announcement of public meeting.
    • 2015-03-27 — Transcript: U.S. Department of Energy Public Meeting; The Energy Conservation Standards For Residential Furnaces

    Staff Contact: Frank Stanonik

    Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Furnaces and Commercial Water Heaters

    Summary: The Department of Energy (DOE) received a petition asking DOE to: issue an interpretive rule stating that DOE's proposed energy conservation standards for residential furnaces and commercial water heaters would result in the unavailability of “performance characteristics” within the meaning of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 1975, as amended (i.e., by setting standards which can only be met by condensing combustion technology products/equipment and thereby precluding the distribution in commerce of non-condensing combustion technology products/equipment) and withdraw the proposed energy conservation standards for residential furnaces and commercial water heaters based upon such findings.

    Type of Regulation: Energy Conservation

    Rulemaking Link: Rulemaking Webpage

    Docket ID:EERE-2018-BT-STD-0018

    UPDATES:

    • Posted: July 11, 2019 — Granting in part and denying in part a petition for rulemaking; notice of proposed interpretive rule; request for comment
    • Posted: January 29, 2019 — Notice of petition for rulemaking; extension of public comment period
    • Posted: November 1, 2018 — Notice of petition for rulemaking; request for comment

    Comment Period Close Date: Closed

    Where to Comment:EERE-2018-BT-STD-0018

    AHRI Comments to Previous Stages of Rulemaking:

    Staff Contact: Laura Petrillo-Groh

    N/A

    Current Standard

    Residential furnaces 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)(1)(i).

    The Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) of residential furnaces shall not be less than the following for non-weatherized gas-fired furnaces manufactured before November 19, 2015; non-weatherized oil-fired furnaces manufactured before May 1, 2013; and weatherized furnaces manufactured before January 1, 2015:
     

    Table 1. Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Furnaces

    Product Class

    AFUE1(percent)

    (A) Furnaces (excluding classes noted below)

    78

    (B) Mobile home furnaces

    75

    (C) Small furnaces (other than those designed solely for installation in mobile homes) having an input rate less than 45,000 Btu/h

    1. Weatherized (outdoor)
    2. Non-weatherized (indoor)

    78

    78

    1Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency, as determined in section 10 CFR 430.23(n)(2).

    The AFUE of residential furnaces shall not be less than the following start on the compliance date shown in the table:
     

    Table 2. Energy Conservation Standards for Non-Weatherized Furnaces and Weatherized Gas and Oil-Fired Furnaces

    Furnace Product Class

    AFUE1(percent)

    Compliance Date

    (A) Non-weatherized gas furnaces (not including mobile home furnaces)

    80

    November 19, 2015

    (B) Mobile Home gas furnaces

    80

    November 19, 2015.

    (C) Non-weatherized oil-fired furnaces (not including mobile home furnaces)

    83

    May 1, 2013

    (D) Mobile home oil-fired furnaces

    75

    September 1, 1990

    (E) Weatherized gas furnaces

    81

    January 1, 2015

    (F) Weatherized oil-fired furnaces

    78

    January 1, 1992

    (G) Electric furnaces

    78

    January 1, 1992

    1 Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency, as determined in section 10 CFR 430.23(n)(2).

     

    Furnaces manufactured on or after May 1, 2013, shall have an electrical standby mode power consumption (PW,SB) and electrical off mode power consumptions (PW,OFF) not more than the following:
     

    Table 3. Electrical Standby Mode Power Consumption and Electrical Off Mode Power Consumption for Furnaces

    Furnace Product Class

    Maximum standby mode electrical power consumption, PW,SB (watts)

    Maximum off mode electrical power consumption, PW,OFF (watts)

    (A) Non-weatherized gas furnaces (not including mobile home furnaces)

    11

    11

    (B) Electric furnaces

    10

    10

     

    Links:

    After a regulatory action has been completed, Executive Order 12866 requires agencies to identify the substantive changes between the draft submitted to Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) for review and the action subsequently announced, and to identify those changes made at the suggestion or recommendation of OIRA. The document below provides more information:

     

    To determine compliance with DOE standards, manufacturers must follow the test procedures specified at 10 CFR 432(e)(2) for residential furnaces. The methods to conduct the test procedure are further specified in 10 CFR 430 Appendix N to Subpart B.

    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:

    Furnaces Specification Version 4.1

    In Development:

    N/A

    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. AHRI is an EPA-recognized CB. Email [email protected] for more information.

    More Information:

    Energy Star Furnace Page