New Water Heater Regulations – Part 1

Norfolk PlumbingGeneral0 Comments

The National Appliance Energy Conservation Act (NAECA) had an update go into effect on April 16, 2015. The requirements call for higher energy factor (EF) ratings on virtually all residential gas, electric, oil, and tankless gas water heaters. NAECA 2015 will also affect some light-duty commercial water heaters.

The U.S Department of Energy (DOE) regulates minimum energy efficiency requirements for water heaters. These set of regulations are called the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act (NAECA) and they were created in 1990. The standards mentioned above were introduced in 2010 but went into effect on April 16th.

What does the update mean for me?

The design changes will require that most residential water heaters under 55 gallons produced after April 16th, 2015, to be larger in size. This will mean more installation space in both single-family and multi-family housing. The majority of water heaters under 55 gallons will grow by 2″ in height and diameter. Water heaters over 55 gallons will have even more dramatic changes. We will go into more detail in part two of the series.

How is the energy factor (EF) calculated?

The Energy Factor indicates a water heater’s overall energy efficiency based on the amount of hot water produced per unit of fuel consumed over a typical day. The higher the EF, the more energy efficient the water heater. The EF is measured in three ways. The first way is Recovery efficiency and that is how efficiently the heat from the energy source is transferred to the water. The second way is by Standby losses, the percentage of heat loss per hour from the stored water compared to the heat content of the water. The third way is by cycling losses, the loss of heat as the water circulates through a water heater tank.

If you have any questions regarding this new update, do not hesitate and email us or give us a call at (757) 466-0644.

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