Commercial Clothes Washers

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As defined in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), “commercial clothes washer” means a soft-mounted front-loading or soft-mounted top-loading clothes washer that: (1) Has a clothes container compartment that (i) For horizontal-axis clothes washers, is not more than 3.5 cubic feet; and (ii) For vertical-axis clothes washers, is not more than 4.0 cubic feet; and (2) Is designed for use in: (i) Applications in which the occupants of more than one household will be using the clothes washer, such as multi-family housing common areas and coin laundries; or (ii) Other commercial applications. 10 CFR 431.152 Manufacturers have been required to comply with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) energy conservation standards for commercial clothes washers since 2007.

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 notice extending the public comment period for the notice of proposed rulemaking (NOPR) regarding proposals to amend the test procedures for residential and commercial clothes washers. DOE published the NOPR in the Federal Register on September 1, 2021, establishing a 61-day public comment period ending November 1, 2021. On October 11, 2021, DOE received a comment requesting extension of the comment period by an additional 92 days to February 1, 2022. DOE is extending the public comment period for submitting comments and data on the NOPR document by an additional 28 days, to November 29, 2021, for a total of an 89-day comment period.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice proposing to amend the test procedures for residential and commercial clothes washers by amending Appendix J2 and Appendix J3, adopting a new Appendix J, and removing Appendix J1. The proposed amendments to Appendix J2 would further specify test conditions, instrument specifications, and test settings; address large clothes container capacities; add product- specific enforcement provisions; and delete obsolete provisions. The proposed amendments to Appendix J3 would consolidate all test cloth-related provisions and codify additional test cloth material verification procedures used by industry. The proposed new Appendix J would be based on the proposed Appendix J2, with additional modifications for certain test conditions, measurement of average cycle time, required test cycles, tested load sizes, semi-automatic clothes washer provisions, new performance metrics, and updated usage factors. Whereas Appendix J2 is used to determine compliance with current clothes washer efficiency standards, the proposed new Appendix J would be used for the evaluation and issuance of updated efficiency standards, as well as to determine compliance with the updated standards. As part of this proposal, DOE is announcing a webinar to collect comments and data on this proposal. DOE is seeking comment from interested parties on the proposal.

DOE has published a Federal Register notice undertaking an early assessment review for amended energy conservation standards for commercial clothes washers to determine whether to amend applicable energy conservation standards for this equipment. Specifically, through this request for information (RFI), DOE seeks data and information that could enable the agency to determine whether DOE should propose a “no-new-standard” determination because a more-stringent standard: would not result in a significant savings of energy; is not technologically feasible; is not economically justified; or any combination of the foregoing.

  • Frequently Asked Questions on the request for information pertaining to energy conservation standards for Commercial Clothes Washers.

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.

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 undertaking an early assessment review for amended energy conservation standards for commercial clothes washers. 85FR44795 (July 24, 2020).

DOE has published a Federal Regiseter final rule prescribing energy conservation standards for commercial clothes washers. 79 FR 74492 (December 15, 2014). Compliance with the amended standards established for commercial clothes washers in this final rule is required on January 1, 2018.

The commercial clothes washer energy conservation standard rulemaking docket EERE-2012-BT-STD-0020 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 the notice of proposed rulemaking (NOPR) regarding proposals to amend the test procedures for residential and commercial clothes washers. 86FR59652 (October 28,2021).

DOE has published a Federal Register notice pertaining to test procedures for residential and commercial clothes washers. 86FR49140 (September 1, 2021). 

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 request for information pertaining to test procedures for commercial clothes washers. 85FR31065. (May 22, 2020).

DOE has issued a pre-publication, final rule;correcting amendments pertaining to test procedures for commercial clothes washers. (March 28, 2016)

DOE published a final rule regarding test procedure amendments for clothes washers. 80 FR 46730 (August 5, 2015).

The clothes washer test procedure rulemaking docket EERE-2013-BT-TP-0009 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 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 431.156.


Current Test Procedure

To determine that commercial 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 431.154.

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 waivers, see DOE’s Waivers webpage

For information about obtaining test procedure waivers, see 10 CFR 431.401.

Exceptions

DOE's Office of Hearings and Appeals has not authorized exception relief for commercial 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 431, subpart W.

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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