Settlement Reached in Regional Standards Lawsuit (cont.)
With the filing of this week's settlement of the Regional Standards lawsuit, a few questions have arisen regarding what the settlement will mean.
What will the Central Air-Conditioning Standard be in the South and Southwest?
On January 1, 2015 the efficiency standard for central air-conditioners in the South will be 14-SEER. In the Southwest, that standard will be 14 SEER and 12.2 EER for systems smaller than 45,000 Btu, and 14 SEER and 11.7 EER for systems larger than 45,000 Btu.
What about the heat pump standard?
As of Jan. 1, 2015, national efficiency standards will be 14 SEER and 8.2 HSPF for split-system heat pumps; 14 SEER and 8.0 HSPF for single-package heat pumps; 13 SEER and 7.7 HSPF for small duct, high velocity systems; 12 SEER for space-constrained air conditioners; and 12 SEER and 7.4 EER for space-constrained heat pumps.
Will there be an 18-month sell through for heat pumps?
Because heat pumps have a base national standard (and no regional standard), a distributor will not be limited in the amount of time it takes to fully deplete inventory of heat pumps manufactured prior to January 1, 2015.
On April 24, 2014 the U.S. Court of Appeals accepted a joint settlement agreement (“Agreement”) of parties that had filed lawsuits associated with the direct final rule the Department of Energy (“DoE”) issued on June 27, 2011 that related to energy conservation standards for residential furnaces and residential central air conditioners and heat pumps. The Agreement effects different product categories in these ways: Gas Furnaces have National Minimum Efficiency Standards The current national minimum energy conservation standard for residential weatherized gas furnaces (single package gas electric) will change from 78% AFUE to 81% AFUE for those residential weatherized gas furnaces manufactured on or after January 1, 2015. This will be a national, not regional, standard. The effective date for the new minimum efficiencies for these products is January 1, 2015, and is based on date of manufacture . The current national minimum energy conservation standard for residential n
In N + 1 the "N" is the nominal amount of cooling/heating units required in a building. The "+ 1" refers to an additional HVAC unit as a redundant backup to all others. Example: A calculation is performed to decide the amount in tons that a building requires. The result is 12 tones. To achieve this the over does not want to use one 12-ton unit, but rather three 4-ton units of four 3-ton units. The N + 1 requirement would give the building contractor the option to put four 4-ton units of five 4-ton units to provide a redundant unit.
Yesterday the US District Court of Appeals approved a settlement in the long-running Regional Efficiency Standards lawsuit. The settlement was presented to the court in March after more than two years of litigation. Following the settlement, HARDI COO/EVP Talbot Gee stated "We are pleased to see the court accept this settlement and officially provide HVACR distributors with the relief HARDI fought so hard for." He added, "Now, our attention turns to working with our industry partners and the DOE to reform the processes that led to the lawsuit and to find a common-sense solution to enforcing the standard." As part of the settlement: DOE has withdrawn the residential gas furnace standard and will draft a new standard, which will likely not take effect until 2021 or 2022. Distributors in the South and Southwest will have 18-months (July 1, 2016) to sell any 13-SEER equipment which is manufactured by the end of 2014. DOE has agreed not t