Covered Product Category: Fax Machines
FEMP provides acquisition guidance across a variety of product categories, including fax machines, which are an ENERGY STAR®-qualified product category. Federal laws and executive orders mandate that agencies meet these efficiency requirements in all procurement and acquisition actions that are not specifically exempted by law.
Most manufacturers display the ENERGY STAR label on complying models. For a model not displaying this label, check the manufacturer's literature to determine if it meets the efficiency requirements outlined by ENERGY STAR.
This product category overview covers the following:
- Performance Requirements for Federal Purchases
- Buying Energy-Efficient Fax Machines
- Buyer Tips
- User Tips
- Estimating Energy and Cost Savings
- For More Information
Performance Requirements for Federal Purchases
For the most up-to-date efficiency levels required by ENERGY STAR, look for the ENERGY STAR label or visit the ENERGY STAR Product Specifications website. For more information, contact the FEMP point of contact listed at the bottom of this page.
Buying Energy-Efficient Fax Machines
Fax machines must have a low standby power mode of 1 Watt or less, depending on the print speed; some models use even less power in sleep mode. The low-power mode is triggered after five minutes of inactivity, and the active mode is automatically restored to send or receive a fax.
The Federal supply source for energy-efficient fax machines is the General Services Administration (GSA). GSA's online ordering system, GSA Advantage!, can be used to select and order fax machines. Whether buying from GSA or a commercial source, make sure that the model qualifies for the ENERGY STAR label. All ENERGY STAR fax machines meet efficiency requirements. When contracting or buying from a commercial source (retailer or distributor), choose models that qualify for the ENERGY STAR label. Visit the ENERGY STAR website for a list of complying models.
These requirements apply to all forms of procurement, including guide and project specifications; construction, renovation, repair, energy service, operation and maintenance (O&M) contracts; lease agreements; and solicitations for offers. Energy performance requirements should be included in all evaluations of solicitation responses. Buyers shall insert the standard clause from FAR section 52.223-15 into contracts and solicitations that deliver, acquire, furnish, or specify energy-consuming products for use in Federal facilities. Agencies can claim an exception to these requirements through a written finding that no ENERGY STAR-qualified or FEMP-designated product is life-cycle cost effective for a specific application.
Look for a fax machine model with the lowest available power level in standby mode, because most fax machines are in standby mode most of the time. The ENERGY STAR product listing includes information on standby power consumption.
A few fax machine models (and several multifunction machines) can scan duplex (two-sided) originals. This avoids the need to recopy a two-sided document before faxing it. Some models also offer two-to-one image reduction for incoming faxes. This reduces transmission time and saves paper.
Multifunction equipment that combines printing, copying, and scanning along with fax capabilities may be an attractive option, especially for small offices and home use where space is limited. See the ENERGY STAR website for a list of qualified models. However, the fax function requires that the entire unit remain in standby mode at all times. This may increase standby power significantly, since many of these models have higher standby power levels than a fax-only machine.
Make sure that the power management features of your fax machine have been enabled. To save on paper and energy, use stick-on labels in place of a separate cover sheet for outgoing faxes. Whenever possible, use e-mail, post your documents to the Web, or take advantage of paperless faxing from a desktop or network fax modem. Consider using waste paper with one blank side for receiving faxes.
Estimating Energy and Cost Savings
FEMP plans to provide a cost-effectiveness example for this product category in FY 2012. For more information, contact the FEMP point of contact listed at the bottom of this page.
For More Information
Federal supply sources are the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) and Defense Logistics Agency (DLA). GSA sells products through its Multiple Awards Schedules and GSA Advantage! DLA offers products through the Defense Supply Center Philadelphia and DOD EMALL.
The following resources are available for additional information:
Federal Energy Management Program
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory provided supporting analysis for this acquisition guidance.