Commercial Water Heating Equipment

Sign up for e-mail updates on regulations for this and other products

Commercial water heating equipment includes commercial storage water heaters, commercial instantaneous water heaters and hot water supply boilers, and unfired hot water storage tanks. Commercial water heating equipment includes gas-fired, oil-fired, and electric industrial equipment. As defined in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), storage water heaters heat and store water within the appliance at a thermostatically controlled temperature for delivery on demand, and have an input rating less than 4,000 Btu/h per gallon of stored water. Instantaneous water heaters have an input rating not less than 4,000 Btu/h per gallon of stored water. Hot water supply boilers are packaged boilers that heat potable water for purposes other than space heating. Unfired hot water storage tanks store water that is heated externally. 10 CFR 431.102 Manufacturers have been required to comply with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) energy conservation standards for commercial water heating equipment since 1992.

Current Standard | Current Test Procedure | Ongoing Rulemaking for Standards | Ongoing Rulemaking for Test Procedure | Helpful Links


Recent and Ongoing Activities

DOE has published a Federal Register notification of proposed determination (NOPD) and request for comment pertaining to standards for unfired hot water storage tanks (UFHWSTs). The Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA), prescribes standards for various consumer products and certain commercial and industrial equipment, including UFHWSTs. EPCA also requires DOE to periodically determine whether more-stringent, amended standards would result in significant additional conservation of energy, be technologically feasible, and be economically justified. After carefully considering the available market and technical information for this equipment, DOE has tentatively concluded in this document that it lacks clear and convincing evidence that more-stringent standards for UFHWSTs would save a significant additional amount of energy and would be economically justified. As such, DOE has initially determined that energy conservation standards for UFHWSTs do not need to be amended. DOE requests comment on this NOPD, as well as the associated analyses and results.

  • DOE will accept comments, data, and information regarding this NOPD/RFI until August 9, 2021.
  • Interested persons may submit comments identified by docket number EERE-2017-BT-STD-0021, by email (UnfiredCommercialWH2017STD0021@ee.doe.gov), Federal eRulemaking portal (http://www.regulations.gov) postal mail, or hand delivery/courier.
  • The webinar will be held on Tuesday, July 13, 2021, from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Click here to register for the webinar.
  • Foreign Nationals interested in participating in this webinar, must be screened by DOE Headquarters Security prior to being granted access. Please email Regina.Washington@ee.doe.gov to complete the necessary documentation at least two weeks prior to scheduled meeting date.
  • Additional webinar registration information, participant instructions, and information about the capabilities available to webinar participants will be published on DOE’s website: https://energy.gov/eere/buildings/public-meetings-and-comment-deadlines

DOE has published a Federal Register notice of final interpretive rule that published on January 15, 2020.  86 FR 4776.  In response to a petition for rulemaking submitted on October 18, 2018 (Gas Industry Petition), the Department of Energy (DOE or the Department) published that petition in the Federal Register on November 1, 2018, for public review and input. DOE subsequently published in the Federal Register a proposed interpretive rule on July 11, 2019, and a supplemental notice of proposed interpretive rule on September 24, 2020. After carefully considering the public comments on its proposals, DOE has decided to issue a final interpretive rule determining that, in the context of residential furnaces, commercial water heaters, and similarly-situated products/equipment, use of non-condensing technology (and associated venting) constitute a performance-related “feature” under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) that cannot be eliminated through adoption of an energy conservation standard. In light of this final interpretation, published elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register, DOE withdraws its March 12, 2015 proposed rule and September 23, 2016 supplemental proposed rule for energy conservation standards for non-weatherized gas furnace and mobile home gas furnaces, as well as its May 31, 2016 proposed rule for energy conservation standards for commercial water heating equipment.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice extending the public comment period for submitting comments and data on the notice of supplemental proposed interpretive rulemaking (NOPIR) that published on September 24, 2020.  In response to a petition for rulemaking submitted on October 18, 2018 (Gas Industry Petition), DOE published that petition in the Federal Register on November 1, 2018, for public review and input, and DOE subsequently published a proposed interpretive rule in the Federal Register on July 11, 2019. After carefully considering the public comments on its proposed interpretive rule, DOE tentatively determined to consider a more involved class structure which turns on maintenance of compatibility with existing venting categories, and published a NOPIR on September 24, 2020. On September 25, 2020, and October 6, 2020, DOE received comments requesting extension of the comment period on the NOPIR. On September 29, 2020, DOE received a comment from the submitters of the Gas Industry Petition requesting prompt action on their petition.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice reopening the comment period for a request for information pertaining to energy conservation standards for unfired hot water storage tanks. DOE is reopening the comment period for an additional 30 days.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice initiating a data collection process through this request for information (RFI), to consider whether to amend the current uniform national standard for unfired hot water storage tanks (“UFHWSTs”). This RFI seeks to solicit information from the public to help DOE determine whether an amended standard for UFHWSTs would result a significant energy savings and whether such a standard would be technologically feasible and economically justified. 

PETITION FOR RULEMAKING

DOE has published in the Federal Register a notice of supplemental proposed interpretive rule and request for comment responding to a petition for rulemaking submitted on October 18, 2018 (Gas Industry Petition), asking DOE to issue an interpretive rule and to withdraw related, previously published proposals.  DOE will accept comments on the supplemental proposed interpretive rule on or before October 26, 2020.  Interested parties may submit comments identified by docket number EERE-2018-BT-STD-0018.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice responding to a petition for rulemaking submitted on October 18, 2018 (Gas Industry Petition), asking DOE to issue an interpretive rule and to withdraw related, previously published proposals. After carefully considering the public comments on the petition, DOE has decided to partially grant the request for an interpretive rule and is denying the Gas Industry Petitioners’ request to withdraw its earlier proposed rules for residential furnaces and commercial water heaters.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice extending the comment period pertaining to standards for commercial water heaters 84 FR 449 (January 2, 2019).

For the latest information on the planned timing of future DOE regulatory milestones, see the current Office of Management and Budget Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions. All planned dates are preliminary and subject to change.

Standards

DOE has published a Federal Register notification of proposed determination (NOPD) and request for comment pertaining to standards for unfired hot water storage tanks (UFHWSTs). 86FR30796 (June 10, 2021).

DOE has published a Federal Register notice reopening the comment period for a request for information pertaining to standards for unfired hot water storage tanks. 84FR51467 (September 30, 2019)

DOE has published a Federal Register notice request for information (RFI) pertaining to standards for unfired hot water storage tanks. 84FR39220 (August 9, 2019) 

DOE has published a Federal Register notice extending the comment period pertaining to standards for commercial water heaters 84 FR 449 (January 29, 2019).

DOE has published a Federal Register notice of petition for rulemaking and request for information pertaining to commercial water heaters. 83 FR 54883 (November 1, 2018).

The commercial water heating equipment energy conservation standard rulemaking docket EERE-2014-BT-STD-0042 contains all notices, public comments, public meeting transcripts, and supporting documents pertaining to this rulemaking.

Public Meeting Information:

There is no public meeting scheduled at this time.

Submitting Public Comments

The comment period is closed.

RELATED DOCUMENTS

Request for Information

Notice of Proposed  Rulemaking
Notice of Data Availability

DOE undertook a rulemaking that concluded with a final rule in July 2015 amending energy conservation standards for commercial oil-fired storage water heaters. 80 FR 42614 (July 17, 2015). The rulemaking docket EERE-2014-BT-STD-0015 for energy conservation standard and test procedures for certain commercial heating, air conditioners, and water heating equipment (including commercial oil-fired storage water heaters) contains all notices, public comments, public meeting transcripts, and supporting documents pertaining to this rulemaking.

Test Procedure

DOE undertook a rulemaking that concluded with a final rule in November 2016 to revise the commercial water heaters test procedure. 81 FR 79261. The commercial water heater test procedure rulemaking docket EERE-2014-BT-TP-0008 contains all notices, public comments, public meeting transcripts, and supporting documents pertaining to this rulemaking.

Public Meeting Information

There is no public meeting scheduled at this time.

Submitting Public Comments

The comment period is closed.

 


Current Standard

Commercial water heating equipment manufactured 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 at 10 CFR 431.110.


Current Test Procedure

To determine that commercial water heating equipment that is currently manufactured or distributed into commerce is in compliance with DOE standards, manufacturers must follow the test procedure methods specified at 10 CFR 431.106.


Helpful Links

Compliance

DOE has established regulations on certification, compliance, and enforcement in the CFR at 10 CFR Part 429.  These regulations cover statistical sampling plans, certified ratings, certification reports, record retention, and enforcement.  More information on these regulations is available here.

Waivers

For information on current test procedure waivers, see DOE’s Waivers webpage.

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

Exceptions

DOE's Office of Hearings and Appeals has not authorized exception relief for commercial water heating equipment.

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

Guidance and Frequently Asked Questions

For information on further guidance and answers to Frequently Asked Questions on all covered products, see DOE’s Further Guidance database.

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, see 10 CFR part 431, subpart W.

Contact information

For more information related to this product, please email:
ApplianceStandardsQuestions@ee.doe.gov


True