DOE Releases Final Revised Criteria for ENERGY STAR®

April 7th, 2009 by DWM Magazine

The Department of Energy has released the final revised criteria for ENERGY STAR-qualified doors, windows and skylights.The final document includes the following aspects:

1. Phased implementation. According to today’s announcement from DOE, stakeholders generally supported postponing finalization of Phase 2 criteria. “Since it is still three to four years until the likely effective date for these criteria, DOE is deferring finalization of these criteria to allow for additional data collection and analysis,” writes Rich Karney, program manager, “The Department will begin research on a Phase 2 proposal in late [Calendar Year] 2009.”

2. Revised four-zone climate zone map. The revised map includes four climate zones and geography-based zone names; the map included in the March 11 release of the criteria was carried over.

3. Category shift for sliding glass doors. Sliding glass doors will now be present in the door category for the criteria, rather than the windows category. “Stakeholders suggested it would be easier for consumers to understand the separate criteria for doors if they applied to all doors and left only windows in the windows category,” writes Karney. “The Department’s analysis showed that no significant savings would be lost by transferring sliding glass doors to the door category.

4. Revised criteria. In the North, DOE has retained the criteria levels and limited tradeoffs from the Revised Draft Report. (CLICK HERE for related story.) ( With regard to doors, DOE had adjusted the u-factor for doors in the < ½-lite category; in addition, DOE has set the SHGC for doors to match the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC).

For skylights, the criteria listed in the original draft will be retained, based on IECC levels.

5. Tubular Daylighting Devices. While DOE says some stakeholders had suggested that tubular daylighting devices be removed from the program, DOE has decided to continue to include these under the criteria for doors, windows and skylights, “under the condition that manufacturers provide documentation showing the product U-factors are rated under NFRC’s computer simulation procedure.”

6. Insulating Glass (IG) certification. DOE will require IG certification for ENERGY STAR-qualified doors, windows and skylights as soon as NFRC makes this certification mandatory, expected in July 2010.

7. Shipment data requirement. While stakeholders supported DOE’s potential solution to the requirement for reporting product shipment data, the final draft notes that this will help DOE measure the impact of the program, but is still discussing whether this method is plausible. The DOE plans to make a final decision on this before Ducker Research conducts its next study of the door and window market.

DOE rejected the following possibilities for the program:

1. Exemptions for specialized products. Several industry representatives suggested that DOE allow an exception to the U-factor values for high-altitude products, whiles others suggested separate criteria for high-impact products; DOE plans to compile data on these topics and analyze it to determine if it should be used in the Phase 2 proposal.

2. Reference products for building packages. According to today’s announcement, some industry representatives had suggested that a “package” of windows be allowed when equipped with a single glass package but various operator types. The DOE has rejected this suggestion, noting it could cause consumers to “mistakenly believe all windows they purchased qualified for applicable incentives offered in their region.”

3. Elimination of the map on the product label. Karney notes that removing the climate zone map from the product label “would compromise the effectiveness of the label for consumers.”

4. Air infiltration requirement. While some suggested that there be a mandatory air infiltration requirement, DOE has not included this in the new criteria, based on the fact that there’s not a consistent way to evaluate air infiltration performance and for the consumer to verify performance claims, according to the announcement.

5. CPD number and code readjustment requirements. DOE has eliminated these from the final criteria.

6. Orientation, shading, and glazing requirements. DOE notes that setting this was not feasible because it deals with the installation of the windows and Energy Star typically is aimed at the replacement market “where orientation and shading are predetermined.” “The optimal way to capitalize on these factors is to educate consumers on their benefits,” writes Karney.

The revised ENERGY STAR program requirements for doors, windows and skylights will go into effect January 4, 2010. A transitionary period will run through March 31, 2010.

CLICK HERE for full text of final criteria.

The Earth Dies Screaming trailer

CLICK HERE for full text of Karney’s letter.

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  1. [...] the program.Karney first addressed the final criteria for Phase 1, which were released recently. (CLICK HERE for that story.) He reiterated what the DOE has been saying throughout this [...]

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