The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) takes energy efficiency very seriously. In fact, the government agency recently finalized a Congressionally-mandated energy efficiency standard for cooking appliances in residential homes. These new standards were developed with the help of several industry stakeholders, and they’re expected to make a huge impact.

The guide will break down what we know and what you need to know about the cost-saving energy efficiency standards for new cooking products.

New Energy Standards for Cooking Products

The DOE took a hard look at cooking appliances to reduce energy consumption and save consumers money moving forward. But what does it all mean? And what can we expect?

What Cooking Equipment Do the New Energy Standards Affect?

The cooking products impacted by the new energy efficiency standards include gas ranges and electric ranges. But it’s not quite the shake-up it sounds like.

The DOE’s new standards don’t take a swing at the features today’s consumer has come to expect. Continuous cast-iron grates, high-output burners, and other specialty burners and settings are still available and well within the regulations.

Actually, 97 percent of modern gas stoves and 77 percent of modern electric stoves already meet the new standards. Homeowners with functioning appliances that don’t meet the standards aren’t forced to replace them immediately, though servicing them may become more difficult.

It’s also worth noting that the affected cooking appliances are only in the residential sector. These specific regulations don’t impact commercial cooking appliances.

Who Created the New Energy Standards for Cooking Equipment?

The new regulations came as a result of recommendations from several stakeholders in the industry. The recommending bodies include the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers and the Consumer Federation of America, among others.

When Do the New Energy Standards Take Effect?

Mandatory compliance with these new DOE standards is still a few years off. Newly manufactured cooking devices won’t be required to meet the latest standards until January 31, 2028. This timeframe affords appliance manufacturers, both domestic and imported, enough time to improve their equipment’s efficiency to meet the new standards.

What Are the New Energy Standards?

The extent of the standards is unclear. However, one notable allowance is that stoves that use 1.77 million British Thermal Units yearly meet the standard. When the new regulations were proposed originally, only stoves that produced up to 1.204 million BTU each year were within regulation. This is a sizable exception from the original proposal, but the potential impact is still impressive.

How Much Will the New DOE Regulations Save Consumers?

The amount of money the DOE projects consumers will save on their energy bills is staggering. Estimates show consumers will save approximately $1.6B on utility bills over the next three decades.

And this pales in comparison to how much the Biden-Harris Administration’s other energy initiatives are projected to save. The initiatives are expected to save nearly $1 trillion over 30 years.

How Will the New Energy Standards Impact Energy Consumption?

Monetary savings are great, but there are other benefits to these new regulations. It’s estimated that this move will decrease the production of carbon dioxide emissions by 4 million metric tons over 30 years. To put that into perspective, this cooking device initiative can offset the emission production of 500,000 households.

The overall Biden-Harris Administration energy efficiency efforts can offset the greenhouse gas emission production of 18 million gas-powered cars, 22 coal-fired power plants, or 10.5 million homesover 30 years, of course.

The Importance of Energy-Efficient Cooking Appliances

The new regulations might not require immediate replacement of non-conforming devices, but energy efficiency is important. There are many reasons to replace underperforming cooking equipment with newer, more modern alternatives.

Energy-efficient appliances are more sustainable and reduce environmental impact. The consumption of fossil fuels to generate BTUs or electricity produces greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and other pollutants.

Also, energy-efficient devices help consumers save money. These devices consume less gas or electricity than their competitors. As a result, utility bills should be lower, saving consumers money month after month.

Energy Efficiency in Construction

Kitchen appliances aren’t the only industry impacted by energy-efficient regulations or changes. Today’s buildings must be better insulated, use energy-efficient appliances, and meet modern standards. Even buildings constructed by the U.S. government have energy-focused codes to meet, such as those outlined in the 2021 International Energy Conservation Code.

There are tax breaks and other incentives for meeting specific energy standards, utilizing renewable energy like solar, and upgrading from outdated HVAC systems to more efficient ones, like heat pumps and geothermal heating. In short, energy efficiency is a big part of green building practices, and they’re helping contractors build better, smarter, more sustainable projects across the globe.

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