The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today is issuing a notice of proposed rulemaking (NOPR) to amend the test procedures for refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers, and freezers. The NOPR consists of two parts. First, it proposes amending the current procedure by adding test procedures to account for refrigerator-freezers equipped with variable anti-sweat heater controls, amending the long-time automatic defrost test procedure to capture all energy use associated with the defrost cycle expended during testing, establishing test procedures for refrigerator-freezers equipped with more than two compartments, making minor adjustments to the language to eliminate any potential ambiguity regarding how to conduct tests, and requiring certain information in certification reports to clarify how some products are tested to determine their energy ratings. Second, the notice proposes amended test procedures for refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers, and freezers that would be required for measuring energy consumption once DOE promulgates new energy conservation standards for these products. These new standards are currently under development in a separate rulemaking activity. Pursuant to the Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 1975, as amended, these new standards would apply to newly manufactured products starting on January 1, 2014. While the amended test procedures would be based largely on the test methodology used in the existing test procedures, they also include significant revisions with respect to the measurement of compartment temperatures and compartment volumes that would provide a more comprehensive accounting of energy usage by these products. Finally, the new test procedure for 2014 would incorporate into the energy use metric the energy use associated with icemaking for products with automatic icemakers. This NOPR also discusses the proposed treatment of combination wine storage-freezer products that were the subject of a recent test procedure waiver, the testing of refrigeration products with the anti-sweat heater switch turned off, the treatment of auxiliary features used in refrigeration products, the treatment of electric heaters in the current and proposed test procedures, and the incorporation of icemaking energy use in the test procedure.
Agency Contact: Mr. Lucas Adin, U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Building Technologies Program, EE-2J, 1000 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20585-0121. Telephone: (202) 287-1317. E-mail: Lucas.Adin@ee.doe.gov.
This is a proposed regulation.