On April 16, 2015, there will be significant changes to improve energy factor (EF) rating requirements on water heaters currently installed in residential homes. The National Appliance Energy Conservation Act (NAECA) will require higher energy factor ratings on virtually all residential gas, electric, and oil water heaters, including some light duty commercial water heaters as well.
The NAECA rulings are important to customers because they will help residential homes reduce their energy usage and help save money all year long. According to the US Dept of Energy website, the new standards will save approximately 3.3 quads of energy and result in approximately $63 billion in energy bill savings for products shipped over the next 30 years.
The energy factor (EF) indicates the overall energy efficiency of a water heater based on the amount of hot water it produced per unit of fuel consumption over a typical day. The higher the EF, the more energy efficient the water heater. The EF is measured in three ways:
1. Recovery Efficiency – how efficiently the heat from the energy source is transferred to the water.
2. Standby Losses – the percentage of heat loss per hour from stored water compared to the heat content of the water
3. Cycling Losses – the loss of heat as the water circulates through the water heater tank
As a homeowner, you have a lot to gain from these new requirements.
The biggest gain comes from savings. Both energy and money savings can quickly be realized with these new and more efficient equipment guidelines.
In most cases, the new equipment will differ only slightly in size due to the additional insulation requirements with the new products. Therefore, its usually an in/out process where the new simply replaces the old. However, in some cases, a new location might be required if adequate space isn’t available. It may also be advantageous to choose a different type of water heater in order to meet the new guidelines.
The best place to start is by hiring a professional plumber who is knowledgeable in these new requirements, and can help you make the right choice for your home and your family’s needs. You’re in good hands with Quality 1st Plumbing – let us show you the perfect fit for your needs today.