Consumer Clothes Washers

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As defined in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), “clothes washer” means a consumer product designed to clean clothes, utilizing a water solution of soap and/or detergent and mechanical agitation or other movement, and must be one of the following classes: automatic clothes washers, semi-automatic clothes washers, and other clothes washers. 10 CFR 430.2 Manufacturers have been required to comply with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) energy conservation standards for clothes washers since 1988.

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


Recent and Ongoing Activities

DOE has issued a pre-publication Federal Register notice extending the public comment period for the notice of proposed rulemaking (NOPR) which DOE proposes to establish separate product classes for top-loading residential clothes washers and consumer clothes dryers that offer cycle times for a normal cycle of less than 30 minutes, and for front-loading residential clothes washers that offer cycle times for a normal cycle of less than 45 minutes. In this notice, DOE is extending the comment period to October 13, 2020 and announcing a public hearing on September 30, 2020.

  • DOE will accept comments, data, and information regarding this NOPR until October 13, 2020.
  • Interested persons may submit comments identified by docket number EERE-2020-BT-STD-0001, by email (ConsumerWashersDryers2020STD0001@ee.doe.gov), Federal eRulemaking portal (http://www.regulations.gov) postal mail, or hand delivery/courier.
  • The webinar will be held on Wednesday, September 30, 2020, 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 proposed rulemaking pertaining to energy conservation standards for consumer clothes dryers. The Energy Policy and Conservation Act, as amended (EPCA), prescribes energy conservation standards for various consumer products and certain commercial and industrial equipment, including residential clothes washers and consumer clothes dryers. In this notice of proposed rulemaking (NOPR), DOE proposes to establish separate product classes for top-loading residential clothes washers and consumer clothes dryers that offer cycle times for a normal cycle of less than 30 minutes, and for front-loading residential clothes washers that offer cycle times for a normal cycle of less than 45 minutes. DOE would consider appropriate energy and water efficiency standards for such product classes, if adopted, in separate rulemakings.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice extending the public comment period for its Request for Information (RFI) regarding test procedures for residential and commercial clothes washers. DOE published the RFI in the Federal Register on May 22, 2020, establishing a 30-day public comment period ending June 22, 2020. On June 10, 2020, DOE received a comment requesting extension of the comment period by 30 days (and no less than two weeks). In addition, on June 11, 2020, DOE received a comment requesting extension of the comment period by 60 days. DOE is extending the public comment period for submitting comments and data on the RFI by 14 days, to July 6, 2020.

  • Frequently Asked Questions on the request for information pertaining to test procedures for residential and commercial clothes washers.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice initiating a data collection process through this request for information (RFI), to consider whether to amend DOE’s current test procedure  for residential and commercial clothes washers. As part of this RFI, DOE seeks comment on whether there have been changes in product testing methodology or new products on the market since the last test procedure update that may create the need to make amendments to the test procedure for clothes washers. DOE also seeks data and information that could enable the agency to propose that the current test procedure produces results that are representative of an average use cycle for the product and is not unduly burdensome to conduct, and therefore does not need amendment.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice reopening the comment period for the RFI pertaining to standards for residential clothes washers.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice extending the comment period for the RFI pertaining to standards for residential clothes washers.

DOE has published Federal Register notice initiating a data collection process, through this request for information (RFI), to consider whether to amend the current energy conservation standards for residential clothes washers (RCWs).

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 notice reopening the comment period for the RFI pertaining to standards for residential clothes washers. 84 FR 37794 (October 3, 2019

DOE has published Federal Register notice extending the comment period for the RFI pertaining to standards for residential clothes washers. 84FR44557 (August 26, 2019).

DOE has published a Federal Register notice initiating a data collection process through a request for information (RFI) pertaining to standards for residential clothes washers. 84FR37794 (August 2, 2019).

DOE has published a Federal Register notice of a direct final rule for clothes washers. 77 FR 32308 (May 31, 2012).

The clothes washer energy conservation standard rulemaking docket EERE-2008-BT-STD-0019 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.

Test Procedure

DOE has published a Federal Register notice extending the public comment period for its request for information regarding test procedures for residential and commercial clothes washers. 85FR38106 (June 26, 2020).

DOE has published a Federal Register notice request for information pertaining to test procedures for residential clothes washers. 85FR31065. (May 22, 2020).

DOE published an amended test procedure for residential clothes washers on March 7, 2012, specified in 10 CFR Part 430, Subpart B, Appendix J2. Manufacturers must use the amended test procedure beginning March 7, 2015.

The clothes washer test procedure rulemaking docket EERE-2010-BT-TP-0021 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

Clothes washers 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 430.32(g).


Current Test Procedure

To determine that clothes washers that are currently manufactured or distributed into commerce are in compliance with DOE standards, manufacturers must follow the test procedure methods specified at 10 CFR 430.23(j).

Test Cloth Correction Factors

The Test Cloth Correction Factors page contains the information used to determine the test cloth correction factors for each test cloth lot.


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 wavers, see DOE’s Waivers webpage.

For information about obtaining test procedure waivers, see 10 CFR 430.27.

Exceptions

DOE's Office of Hearings and Appeals has not authorized exception relief for clothes washers.

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 430, subpart D.

Small Business Exemptions

Any manufacturer of a covered product with annual gross revenues that do not exceed $8,000,000 from all its operations and meets certain other conditions may apply for an exemption to the energy conservation standard. For details, see 10 CFR part 430, subpart E.

ENERGY STAR®

DOE supports the testing and verification of ENERGY STAR® products in close collaboration with the Environmental Protection Agency.

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

Contact information

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


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