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Packaged Terminal Air Conditioners and Heat Pumps

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The Department of Energy (DOE) has regulated the energy efficiency level of packaged terminal air conditioners and heat pumps since 1994. Packaged terminal air conditioners (PTACs) and packaged terminal heat pumps (PTHPs) are through-the-wall space conditioning units commonly used in lodging, townhouse office complexes, and extended care facilities.

The current standard will save approximately 0.04 quads of energy and result in approximately $32 million in energy bill savings for products shipped from 2012-2042. The standard will avoid about 2 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions, equivalent to the annual greenhouse gas emissions of about 392,000 automobiles.


Recent Updates | Standards | Test Procedures | Waiver, Exception, and Exemption Information | Statutory Authority | Historical Information | Contact Information


Recent Updates

DOE issued a pre-publication Federal Register notice of proposed rulemaking and public meeting regarding energy conservation standards for packaged terminal air conditioners and packaged terminal heat pumps. (August 28, 2014).  A public meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, October 29, 2014, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., in Washington, DC. For more information, see the rulemaking page.

DOE published a notice of public meeting and availability of the framework document regarding energy conservation standards for packaged terminal air conditioners and packaged terminal heat pumps. 78 FR 12252 (February 22, 2013). For more information, see the rulemaking page.



Standards for Packaged Terminal Air Conditioners and Heat Pumps

The following content summarizes the energy conservation standards for packaged terminal air conditioners and heat pumps. The text is not an official reproduction of the Code of Federal Regulations and should not be used for legal research or citation.

Current Standard

Standard size PTAC or PTHP refers to equipment with wall sleeve dimensions having an external wall opening greater than or equal to 16 inches high or greater than or equal to 42 inches wide, and a cross-sectional area greater than or equal to 670 square inches.

Non-standard size refers to PTAC or PTHP equipment with existing wall sleeve dimensions having an external wall opening of less than 16 inches high or less than 42 inches wide, and a cross-sectional area less than 670 square inches.

Standard size packaged terminal air conditioners or packaged terminal heat pumps manufactured on or after September 30, 2012, 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 431.97(c). The standards apply to non-standard sized packaged terminal air conditioners and heat pumps manufactured on or after September 30, 2010.

Table 1. Energy Conservation Standards for Commercial Package Air Conditioners
Equipment Class Energy Conservation Standards
Equipment Category Cooling Capacity
(British thermal units per hour [Btu/h])
PTAC Standard Size <7,000 EER = 11.7
7,000 – 15,000 EER = 13.8 – (0.300 × Cap* )
>15,000 EER = 9.3
Non-Standard Size <7,000 EER = 9.4
7,000 – 15,000 EER = 10.9 – (0.213 × Cap* )
>15,000 EER = 7.7
PTHP Standard Size <7,000 EER = 11.9
COP = 3.3
7,000 – 15,000 EER = 14.0 – (0.300 × Cap* )
COP = 3.7 – (0.052 x Cap* )
>15,000 EER = 9.5
COP = 2.9
Non-Standard Size <7,000 EER = 9.3
COP = 2.7
7,000 – 15,000 EER = 10.8 – (0.213 × Cap* )
COP = 2.9 – (0.026 × Cap*)
>15,000 EER = 7.6
COP = 2.5

* "Cap"means cooling capacity in thousand Btu/h at 95 °F outdoor dry-bulb temperature.

For further guidance or to submit questions related to the implementation of this standard, visit the Guidance and Frequently Asked Questions page.

Test Procedure for Packaged Terminal Air Conditioners and Heat Pumps

Current Test Procedure

To determine compliance with DOE standards, manufacturers must follow the test procedures specified at 10 CFR 431.96 for packaged terminal air conditioners and packaged terminal heat pumps. These are also in the Electronic Code of Federal Regulations.

For further guidance or to submit questions related to the implementation of this test procedure, visit the Guidance and Frequently Asked Questions page.

Waivers, Exceptions, and Exemptions

Waivers

Test procedure waivers have not been issued for PTACs or PTHPs. For more information, please see the table below.

For information about obtaining test procedure waivers, see 10 CFR section 431 subpart V.

Exceptions

The DOE Office of Hearings and Appeals has not authorized exception relief for PTACs or PTHPs.

For information about obtaining exception relief, see 10 CFR part 1003.

State Exemptions to Federal Pre-emption

DOE has not exempted any state from this energy conservation standard. States may petition DOE to exempt a state regulation from preemption by the Federal energy conservation standard. States may also petition DOE to withdraw such exemptions. For details, 10 CFR 431 subpart V or subpart W.

Statutory Authority

The current energy conservation standards for commercial package air conditioners and heat pumps are mandated by Part A–1, the "Certain Industrial Equipment" of Title III of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA), as amended. (42 U.S.C. 6311–6317). This equipment is treated as covered equipment under Part A-1. (42 U.S.C. 6311(1)(I))

Historical Information

Previous Standards

2007 Final Rule

2001 Final Rule

Helpful Links and Contact Information

Helpful Links

Find tips and guidance for making your home, workplace, or vehicle more energy efficient visit EnergySavers.gov.

DOE supports the testing and verification of ENERGY STAR® products in close collaboration with the Environmental Protection Agency. ENERGY STAR qualified light commercial HVAC equipment uses 7-10% less energy than standard equipment.

Contact information

For more information related to the regulation of this product, please email:


PTACs@ee.doe.gov