[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 63 (Tuesday, April 2, 2013)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 19606-19628]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-07327]


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Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of 
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these 
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in 
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.

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Federal Register / Vol. 78, No. 63 / Tuesday, April 2, 2013 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 19606]]



DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY

10 CFR Parts 429 and 430

[Docket No. EERE-2010-BT-TP-0010]
RIN 1904-AC21


Energy Conservation Program for Consumer Products: Test 
Procedures for Residential Furnace Fans

AGENCY: Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Department of 
Energy.

ACTION: Supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) proposes to establish test 
procedures for electrically-powered devices used in residential 
heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) products to circulate 
air through ductwork, hereafter referred to as ``furnace fans.'' DOE 
proposes a test procedure that would be applicable to furnace fans that 
are used in weatherized and non-weatherized gas, oil and electric 
furnaces and modular blowers, even though DOE interprets its authority 
as encompassing more than just circulation fans used in furnaces. This 
notice proposes to establish a test method for measuring the electrical 
consumption of the furnace fans used in these products. Concurrently, 
DOE is undertaking an energy conservation standards rulemaking to 
address the electrical energy used by these products for circulating 
air. Once these energy conservation standards are promulgated, the 
adopted test procedures would be used to determine compliance with the 
standards. DOE is also requesting written comments on issues presented 
in this test procedure rulemaking. DOE does not plan to hold a public 
meeting to discuss the modified proposals of this supplemental notice.

DATES: Comments: DOE will accept comments, data, and information 
regarding this supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNOPR) no 
later than May 2, 2013. For details, see section V, ``Public 
Participation,'' of this SNOPR.

ADDRESSES: Any comments submitted must identify the SNOPR on Test 
Procedures for Residential Furnace Fans, and provide docket number 
EERE-2010-BT-TP-0010 and/or regulatory information number (RIN) number 
1904-AC21. Comments may be submitted using any of the following 
methods:
    1. Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov. Follow the 
instructions for submitting comments.
    2. Email: FurnFans-2010-TP-0010@ee.doe.gov. Include docket number 
EERE-2010-BT-TP-0010 and RIN 1904-AC21 in the subject line of the 
message.
    3. Mail: Ms. Brenda Edwards, U.S. Department of Energy, Building 
Technologies Program, Mailstop EE-2J, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., 
Washington, DC 20585-0121. If possible, please submit all items on a 
compact disc (CD), in which case it is not necessary to include printed 
copies.
    4. Hand Delivery/Courier: Ms. Brenda Edwards, U.S. Department of 
Energy, Building Technologies Program, 950 L'Enfant Plaza SW., Suite 
600, Washington, DC 20024. Telephone: (202) 586-2945. If possible, 
please submit all items on a CD, in which case it is not necessary to 
include printed copies.
    No telefacsimilies (faxes) will be accepted. See section V, 
``Public Participation,'' for detailed instructions on submitting 
comments and additional information on the rulemaking process.
    Docket: The docket is available for review at www.regulations.gov, 
including Federal Register notices, public meeting attendee lists and 
transcripts, comments, and other supporting documents/materials. All 
documents in the docket are listed in the www.regulations.gov index. 
However, not all documents listed in the index may be publicly 
available, such as information that is exempt from public disclosure.
    A link to the docket Web page can be found at: http://www1.eere.energy.gov/buildings/appliance_standards/product.aspx/productid/42. This Web page contains a link to the docket for this 
notice on the www.regulations.gov site. The www.regulations.gov Web 
page contains simple instructions on how to access all documents, 
including public comments, in the docket. See section V, ``Public 
Participation,'' for information on how to submit comments through 
www.regulations.gov.
    For further information on how to submit a comment, review other 
public comments and the docket, or participate in the public meeting, 
contact Ms. Brenda Edwards at (202) 586-2945 or by email: 
Brenda.Edwards@ee.doe.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: The residential furnace fans 
rulemaking electronic mailbox, Email: Residential_furnace_fans@ee.doe.gov.
    Mr. Ari Altman, U.S. Department of Energy, Office of the General 
Counsel, GC-71, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-
0121. Telephone: (202) 287-6307. Email: Ari.Altman@hq.doe.gov.
    For information on how to submit or review public comments, contact 
Ms. Brenda Edwards, U.S. Department of Energy, Building Technologies 
Program, EE-2J, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-
0121. Telephone: (202) 586-2945. Email: Brenda.Edwards@ee.doe.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Table of Contents

I. Authority and Background
II. Summary of the Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking
III. SNOPR Discussion
    A. Scope of Coverage
    B. AHRI Test Method
    1. Calculating Maximum Airflow
    2. ASHRAE 37 External Static Pressure Measurements
    3. Temperature Rise Measurements
    C. Definitions
    D. Sampling Plans
    E. Standby Mode and Off Mode Energy Consumption
    F. Reference System Product Types
IV. Procedural Issues and Regulatory Review
    A. Review Under Executive Order 12866
    B. Review Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act
    C. Review Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995
    D. Review Under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969
    E. Review Under Executive Order 13132
    F. Review Under Executive Order 12988
    G. Review Under the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995
    H. Review Under the Treasury and General Government 
Appropriations Act, 1999
    I. Review Under Executive Order 12630
    J. Review Under Treasury and General Government Appropriations 
Act, 2001
    K. Review Under Executive Order 13211
    L. Review Under Section 32 of the Federal Energy Administration 
Act of 1974

[[Page 19607]]

V. Public Participation
    A. Submission of Comments
    B. Issues on Which DOE Seeks Comment
    1. Airflow Equation
    2. Using Temperature Rise in the Rated Heating Airflow-Control 
Setting To Calculate Maximum Airflow
    3. Using the Maximum Heat Setting To Measure Temperature Rise
    4. Elevation Impacts
    5. Outlet Duct Restriction Specifications
    6. Optional Return Air Duct
    7. ASHRAE 37-2005 External Static Pressure Measurement 
Provisions
    8. Temperature Measurement Accuracy Requirement
    9. Minimum Temperature Rise
    10. Steady-State Stabilization Criteria
    11. Inlet and Outlet Airflow Temperature Gradients
    12. Sampling Plan Criteria
VI. Approval of the Office of the Secretary

I. Authority and Background

    Title III, Part B \1\ of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 
1975 (EPCA or the Act), Public Law 94-163 (42 U.S.C. 6291-6309, as 
codified) sets forth a variety of provisions designed to improve energy 
efficiency and established the Energy Conservation Program for Consumer 
Products Other Than Automobiles, a program covering most major 
household appliances.\2\ These covered appliances include products that 
use electricity for the purposes of circulating air through ductwork, 
hereinafter referred to as ``furnace fans,'' the subject of today's 
notice.\3\ (42 U.S.C. 6295(f)(4)(D))
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ For editorial reasons, upon codification in the U.S. Code, 
Part B was redesignated Part A.
    \2\ All references to EPCA in this rulemaking refer to the 
statute as amended through the Energy Independence and Security Act 
of 2007, Public Law 110-140.
    \3\ DOE interprets its authority as encompassing more than just 
circulation fans used in residential furnaces. At the present time, 
however, DOE is only proposing a test procedure that would cover 
those fans that are used in weatherized and non-weatherized gas, 
oil, and electric furnaces, and modular blowers.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Under the Act, this energy conservation program consists 
essentially of four parts: (1) Testing; (2) labeling; (3) Federal 
energy conservation standards; and (4) certification and enforcement 
procedures. The testing requirements consist of test procedures that 
manufacturers of covered products must use as the basis for certifying 
to DOE that their products comply with the applicable energy 
conservation standards adopted pursuant to EPCA and for making 
representations about the efficiency of those products. (42 U.S.C. 
6293(c); 42 U.S.C. 6295(s)) Any representation made after September 30, 
2013 for energy consumption of residential furnace fans must be based 
upon results generated under this test procedure. Upon the compliance 
date(s) of any energy conservation standard(s) for residential furnace 
fans, use of the applicable provisions of this test procedure to 
demonstrate compliance with the energy conservation standard will also 
be required. Similarly, DOE must use these test procedures in any 
enforcement action to determine whether covered products comply with 
these energy conservation standards. (42 U.S.C. 6295(s))

General Test Procedure Rulemaking Process

    Under 42 U.S.C. 6293, EPCA sets forth the criteria and procedures 
DOE must follow when prescribing or amending test procedures for 
covered products. Under EPCA, ``[a]ny test procedures prescribed or 
amended under this section shall be reasonably designed to produce test 
results which measure energy efficiency, energy use, or estimated 
annual operating cost of a covered product during a representative 
average use cycle or period of use * * * and shall not be unduly 
burdensome to conduct.'' (42 U.S.C. 6293(b)(3)) In addition, if DOE 
determines that a test procedure amendment is warranted, it must 
publish proposed test procedures and offer the public an opportunity to 
present oral and written comments on them. (42 U.S.C. 6293(b)(2)) In 
any rulemaking to amend a test procedure, DOE must determine to what 
extent, if any, the proposed test procedure would alter the measured 
energy efficiency of a covered product as determined under the existing 
test procedure. (42 U.S.C. 6293(e)(1)) If DOE determines that the 
amended test procedure would alter the measured efficiency of a covered 
product, DOE must amend the applicable energy conservation standard 
accordingly. (42 U.S.C. 6293(e)(2))

Energy Conservation Standards and Test Procedures for Furnace Fans

    Pursuant to EPCA under 42 U.S.C. 6295(f)(4)(D), DOE is currently 
conducting a rulemaking to consider new energy conservation standards 
for furnace fans. EPCA directs DOE to establish test procedures in 
conjunction with new energy conservation standards, including furnace 
fans. (42 U.S.C. 6295(o)(3)(A)) DOE does not currently have a test 
procedure for furnace fans. Hence, to fulfill the statutory 
requirements, DOE initiated a test procedure rulemaking for furnace 
fans simultaneously to the energy conservation standards rulemaking for 
furnace fans. DOE intends for the test procedure to include an energy 
consumption metric and the methods necessary to measure the energy 
performance of the covered products. The proposed energy consumption 
metric does not account for the electrical energy consumption in 
standby mode and off mode because consumption in those modes is already 
accounted for in the DOE rulemakings for furnaces and central air 
conditioners (CAC) and heat pumps. 77 FR 76831, December 31, 2012; 76 
FR 65616 (Oct. 24, 2011). Manufacturers would be required to use the 
proposed energy consumption metric, sampling plans, and testing methods 
developed during this rulemaking to verify compliance with the new 
energy conservation standards when they take effect and for making 
representations about the energy consumption of furnace fans.
    On June 3, 2010, DOE published a Notice of Public Meeting and 
Availability of the Framework Document (the June 2010 Framework 
Document) to initiate the energy conservation standard rulemaking for 
furnace fans. 75 FR 31323. In the June 2010 Framework Document, DOE 
requested feedback from interested parties on many issues related to 
test methods for evaluating the electrical energy consumption of 
furnace fans. DOE held the framework public meeting on June 18, 2010. 
DOE originally scheduled the framework comment period to close on July 
6, 2010. However, due to the large number and broad scope of questions 
and issues raised regarding the June 2010 Framework Document in writing 
and during the public meeting, DOE published a notice in the Federal 
Register reopening the comment period from July 15, 2010, until July 
27, 2010, to allow additional time for interested parties to submit 
comments. 75 FR 41102 (July 15, 2010).
    On May 15, 2012, DOE published a notice of proposed rulemaking in 
the Federal Register to initiate the test procedure rulemaking for 
furnace fans. 77 FR 28674. In the NOPR, DOE proposed a rating metric, 
fan efficiency rating (FER) and proposed methods to measure the 
performance of covered products based on FER. DOE held a public meeting 
on the test procedure NOPR on June 15, 2012. The test procedure NOPR 
comment period closed on September 10, 2012.
    In response to the NOPR, many interested parties commented that the 
proposed test procedure was unduly burdensome. The Air-Conditioning, 
Heating and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI), with support from Goodman 
Global, Inc. (``Goodman''), Ingersoll Rand, Lennox International, Inc. 
(``Lennox''), and Morrison Products, Inc. (``Morrison''), proposed an 
alternative

[[Page 19608]]

test method that it argues would result in accurate and repeatable FER 
values that are comparable to the FER values resulting from the test 
procedure proposed in the NOPR, but are obtained at a significantly 
reduced test burden. (AHRI, No. 16 at p. 3; Goodman, No. 17 at p. 4; 
Ingersoll Rand, No. 14 at p. 1; Morrison, No. 21 at p. 3.) A detailed 
discussion of AHRI's proposed alternative method and interested 
parties' comments regarding the burden of the test procedure proposed 
in the NOPR is provided in section III.B of this notice.
    DOE agrees that the key concept embodied in the alternative method 
suggested by AHRI and manufacturers (using the AFUE test set up and 
temperature rise to determine airflow) may provide accurate and 
repeatable FER values at a significantly reduced burden to 
manufacturers. In this supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking 
(SNOPR), DOE proposes to adopt a modified version of the test method 
presented by AHRI as the furnace fan test procedure. DOE also explains 
the changes reflected in the test procedure proposed herein compared to 
the test procedure proposed in the NOPR. This notice also provides 
interested parties with an opportunity to comment on the revised 
proposed test method.
    In this SNOPR, DOE addresses only the changes to the test procedure 
it proposed in the NOPR and those comments received on the NOPR that 
are relevant to the proposed changes. All other comments received on 
the test procedure NOPR will be addressed in the test procedure final 
rule.

II. Summary of the Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

    Pursuant to EPCA, DOE is required to establish these test 
procedures in order to allow for the development of energy conservation 
standards to address the electrical consumption of the products covered 
under this rulemaking. (42 U.S.C. 6295(o)(3)(A)) The proposed test 
procedure would be applicable to electrically-powered devices used in 
central HVAC systems for the purposes of circulating air through 
ductwork (referred to collectively as furnace fans in this rulemaking). 
Furnace fans covered in the scope of the proposed test procedure 
include circulation fans used in weatherized and non-weatherized gas 
furnaces, oil furnaces, electric furnaces, and modular blowers. DOE's 
proposed definition of modular blowers is provided in section III.C. 
The proposed test procedure would not be applicable to any non-ducted 
products, such as whole-house ventilation systems without ductwork, 
central air-conditioning (CAC) condensing unit fans, room fans, and 
furnace draft inducer fans.
    DOE proposes to adopt a modified version of the alternative test 
method recommended by AHRI and other furnace fan manufacturers to rate 
the electrical consumption of furnace fans. The AHRI-proposed method 
provides a framework for accurate and repeatable determinations of FER 
that is comparable to the test method previously proposed by DOE, but 
at a significantly reduced test burden. In general, the AHRI proposal 
reduces the test burden because it: (1) Does not require airflow to be 
measured directly; (2) avoids the need to make multiple determinations 
in each airflow-control setting because outlet restrictions to achieve 
the specified reference system external static pressure (ESP) would be 
set in the maximum airflow-control setting and maintained for 
measurements in subsequent airflow-control settings; and (3) can be 
conducted using the test set up currently required to rate furnace AFUE 
for compliance with furnace standards.
    DOE proposes to align the proposed furnace fan test procedure with 
the DOE test procedure for furnaces by incorporating by reference 
specific provisions from an industry standard incorporated by reference 
in its test procedure for furnaces. DOE's test procedure for furnaces 
is codified in appendix N of subpart B of part 430 of the code of 
federal regulations (CFR). The DOE furnace test procedure incorporates 
by reference American National Standards Institute (ANSI)/American 
Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers 
(ASHRAE) 103-1993, Method of Testing for Annual Fuel Utilization 
Efficiency of Residential Central Furnaces and Boilers (ASHRAE 103). 
DOE proposes to incorporate by reference the definitions, test setup 
and equipment, and procedures for measuring steady state combustion 
efficiency provisions of the 2007 version of ASHRAE 103. In addition to 
these provisions, DOE proposes additional provisions for apparatuses 
and procedures for measuring throughput temperature, external static 
pressure, and furnace fan electrical input power. DOE also proposes 
calculations to derive FER based on the results of testing for each 
basic model.
    DOE proposes to use the same definition for the fan efficiency 
rating (FER) metric as proposed in the NOPR, but to modify the title 
and calculation. In the NOPR, DOE proposed to define FER as the 
estimated annual electrical energy consumption of the furnace fan 
normalized by: (a) The estimated total number of annual fan operating 
hours (1,870); and (b) the airflow in the maximum airflow-control 
setting. DOE is aware that referring to the FER rating metric as the 
``fan efficiency rating,'' as was done in the NOPR, is a misnomer 
because it is not a function of the output energy of the furnace fan, 
which is typical of an efficiency metric. FER is a function of fan 
energy consumption and as a result, DOE believes it is more 
appropriately categorized as an energy consumption metric. Thus DOE 
proposes to refer to FER as the ``fan energy rating.'' The estimated 
annual electrical energy consumption, as proposed, is a weighted 
average of the furnace fan electrical input power (in Watts) measured 
separately for multiple airflow-control settings at different external 
static pressures (ESPs). These ESPs are determined by a reference 
system that represents national average ductwork system 
characteristics. Table II.1 includes the proposed reference system ESP 
values by installation type. The reference system ESP values proposed 
in the NOPR included a value for ``heating-only'' installation types. 
Interested parties recommended that DOE eliminate this installation 
type because they are unaware of products that could be categorized as 
such. DOE agrees with interested parties and proposes to eliminate the 
heating-only designation for this SNOPR. Section III.F provides a 
detailed discussion of this issue.

     Table II.1--Proposed Reference System ESP Values by Furnace Fan
                            Installation Type
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                             Weighted
                    Installation type                       average ESP
                                                            (in. w.c.)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Units with an internal evaporator coil..................            0.50
Units designed to be paired with an evaporator coil.....            0.65
Units installed in a Manufactured homes \4\.............            0.30
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The  proposed rated airflow-control settings correspond to 
operation in cooling mode (which DOE finds is predominantly associated 
with the maximum airflow-control setting), heating mode, and constant-
circulation mode. Table II.2 illustrates the airflow-

[[Page 19609]]

control settings that would be rated for various product types. The 
NOPR included proposed rated airflow control settings for heating-only 
installations. As discussed above, DOE proposes to eliminate the 
heating-only designation for the reasons outlined in section III.F.
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    \4\ Manufactured home external static pressure is much smaller 
because there is no return air ductwork in manufactured homes. Also, 
the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) 
requirements for manufactured homes stipulate that the ductwork for 
cooling should be set at 0.3 in. w.c.

                       Table II.2--Proposed Rated Airflow-Control Settings by Product Type
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        Rated airflow-control    Rated airflow-control    Rated airflow-control
             Product type                     setting 1                setting 2                setting 3
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Single-stage Heating.................  Default constant-        Default heat...........  Absolute maximum.
                                        circulation.
Multi-stage or Modulating Heating....  Default constant-        Default low heat.......  Absolute maximum.
                                        circulation.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As shown in Table II.2., for products with single-stage heating, 
the three proposed rating airflow-control settings are the default 
constant-circulation setting, the default heating setting, and the 
absolute maximum setting. For products with multi-stage heating or 
modulating heating, the proposed rating airflow-control settings are 
the default constant-circulation setting, the default low heating 
setting, and the absolute maximum setting. The absolute lowest default 
airflow-control setting is used to represent constant circulation if a 
default constant-circulation setting is not specified. DOE's proposes 
to define ``default airflow-control settings'' as the airflow-control 
settings specified for installed use by the manufacturer in the product 
literature shipped with the product in which the furnace fan is 
integrated. Manufacturers typically provide detailed instructions for 
setting the default heating airflow control-setting to ensure that the 
product in which the furnace fan is integrated operates safely. 
Manufacturer installation guides also provide detailed instructions 
regarding compatible thermostats and how to wire them to achieve the 
specified default settings.
    DOE proposes to weight the Watt measurements using designated 
annual operating hours for each function (i.e., cooling, heating, and 
constant circulation) that are intended to represent national average 
operation. Table II.3 shows the proposed estimated national average 
operating hours for each function to be used to calculate FER, which 
are the same as those proposed in the NOPR.

                Table II.3--Estimated National Average Operating Hour Values for Calculating FER
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                  Multi-stage or
                Operating mode                              Variable               Single-stage     modulating
                                                                                      (hours)         (hours)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Heating.......................................  HH..............................             830         830/HCR
Cooling.......................................  CH..............................             640             640
Constant Circulation..........................  CCH.............................             400             400
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The specified operating hours for the heating mode for multi-stage 
heating or modulating heating products are divided by the heat capacity 
ratio (HCR) to account for variation in time spent in this mode 
associated with turndown of heating output. The HCR is the ratio of the 
reduced heat output capacity to maximum heat output capacity. In the 
NOPR, DOE proposed to incorporate HCR to adjust the heating operating 
hours in both the numerator (i.e. estimated annual energy consumption) 
and denominator (i.e. normalization factor of total operating hours 
times airflow in the maximum airflow-control setting). 77 FR at 28701 
(May 15, 2012). In this SNOPR, DOE proposes to incorporate HCR in the 
numerator, and eliminate it from the denominator in the revised 
proposed FER equation. DOE finds that this modification results in FER 
values that more accurately reflect the relative efficiency of multi-
stage and modulating units compared to single-stage units. The revised 
proposed FER equation is: 
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.018

III. SNOPR Discussion

A. Scope of Coverage

    EPCA grants DOE authority to ``consider and prescribe energy 
conservation standards or energy use standards for electricity used for 
purposes of circulating air through ductwork.'' (42 U.S.C. 
6295(f)(4)(D)) In the June 2010 Framework Document, DOE tentatively 
interpreted this EPCA language to allow DOE to cover any electrically-
powered device used in a central HVAC system for the purpose of 
circulating air through ductwork. DOE sought comment on including the 
air circulation fans used in gas furnaces, oil furnaces, electric 
furnaces, CAC air handlers, and modular blowers in the scope of 
coverage. DOE also sought comment on excluding draft inducer fans, 
exhaust fans, heat recovery ventilators (HRV), and energy recovery 
ventilators (ERV) from the scope of coverage. DOE also requested 
comment on whether other products, such as small-duct, high-velocity 
(SDHV) and through-the-wall systems should be included in the scope of 
coverage of this rulemaking.
    In the test procedure NOPR, DOE proposed a scope of applicability 
for the test procedure that was sufficiently broad to cover the 
products under consideration for the scope of coverage for the energy 
conservation standards. The NOPR test procedure's proposed scope of 
applicability included single-phase, electrically-powered devices that 
circulate air through ductwork in HVAC systems with heating input 
capacities less than 225,000 Btu per hour, cooling capacities less than 
65,000 Btu per hour, and airflow capacities less than 3,000 cfm. These 
heating and cooling capacity limits are identical to those in the DOE 
definitions for residential ``furnace'' and ``central air conditioner'' 
(10 CFR

[[Page 19610]]

430.2), and the airflow typically required to provide these levels of 
heating and cooling. DOE proposed to exclude from the scope of 
applicability of the test procedure any non-ducted products such as 
whole-house ventilation systems without ductwork, CAC condensing unit 
fans, room fans, and furnace draft inducer fans because these products 
do not circulate air through ductwork.
    In their comments on the test procedure NOPR, many interested 
parties commented that the scope of coverage should be limited to 
circulation fans used in residential furnaces. AHRI stated its view 
that DOE had misinterpreted the relevant provision of EPCA. According 
to AHRI, the heading of 42 U.S.C. 6295(f) entitled, ``standards for 
furnaces and boilers'' and subsections 1 through 4 under that section 
apply only to residential furnaces and boilers, as defined by EPCA. 10 
CFR 430.2 AHRI suggested that this clear, consistent format strongly 
indicates that the scope of this requirement includes only the motor 
and blower combinations provided in residential warm air furnaces. AHRI 
added that there is nothing within section 42 U.S.C. 6295(f) that 
suggests that the provisions of that section apply to any other 
products that may be used to heat a residence. AHRI contended that if 
the intent of this change had been to include circulation fans used in 
residential air conditioners and heat pumps, then Congress would have 
added a corresponding paragraph to 42 U S C. 6295(d)--the section 
covering central air conditioners and heat pumps. (AHRI, No. 16 at pp. 
1-2.) First Company (``First Co.''), Morrison, and Lennox echoed AHRI's 
arguments. (First Co., No. 9 at p. 1; Morrison, Public Meeting 
Transcript, No. 23 at p. 26; Lennox, No. 12 at p. 2.)
    First Co. added that, although subsection (f)(4)(D) refers in more 
general terms to ``standards for electricity used for purposes of 
circulating air through ductwork,'' it is a well-established rule of 
statutory construction that, ``[w]here general words follow specific 
words in a statutory enumeration, the general words are construed to 
embrace only objects similar in nature to those objects enumerated by 
the preceding specific words.'' Circuit City Stores, Inc. v. Adams, 532 
U.S. 105, 114-15, 121 S.Ct. 1302, 1308-09 (2001) (applying the 
statutory canon of ejusdem generis); Air Conditioning and Refrigeration 
Inst. v. Energy Res. Conservation and Dev. Comm'n, 410 F.3d 492,501 
(9th Cir. 2005) (applying same statutory canon to interpretation of 
EPCA). According to First Co., the general language of subsection 
(f)(4)(D) is preceded in subsections (A), (B), and (C) by specific and 
repeated references to standards for furnaces. First Co. argues that 
applying the rules of statutory construction, the provisions of 
subsection (f)(4)(D) must be interpreted to apply to furnaces, and not 
to a broader category of products. (First Co., No. 10 at p. 1) DOE 
disagrees with this reading of the cases cited above, as the Supreme 
Court was in fact considering a ``residual phrase'' within the same 
sentence, finding it to be controlled by the specificity of the words 
that preceded it. With regard to the case of separate statutory 
provisions, the Supreme Court's opinion is silent. DOE provides a 
general response to the issue of authority under 42 U.S.C. 
6295(f)(4)(D) later in this section.
    AHRI, First Co., Ingersoll Rand, Morrison, Mortex Products, Inc., 
Goodman, and Lennox commented that CAC and heat pump products like 
split-system packaged central air conditioners and heat pump air 
handlers should be excluded because the electrical consumption of their 
circulation fans is already addressed in the seasonal energy efficiency 
ratio (SEER) and heating seasonal performance factor (HSPF) 
descriptors. (AHRI, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 74; First 
Co., No. 10 at p. 2; Ingersoll Rand, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 
at p. 98; Morrison, No. 21 at p. 2; Mortex, No. 18 at p. 1; Goodman, 
No. 17 at p. 1; Lennox, No. 12 at p. 2). First Co. points out that in 
the NOPR, DOE proposed not to adopt additional test procedure 
provisions for standby and off mode electrical energy consumption of 
furnace fans used in furnaces and CAC and heat pumps given that 
consumption in these modes either has been or is in the process of 
being fully addressed in other rulemakings. Applying the same 
principle, First Co. states that there is no need for DOE to adopt 
additional test procedures for furnace fans in central air conditioners 
in this rulemaking because their energy usage is addressed by the SEER 
descriptor under the standard.
    First Co. also commented that EPCA allows for the development of 
more than one standard for products that serve more than one major 
function, but limits DOE's authority to setting one standard for each 
major function. 42 U.S.C. 6295(o)(5) According to First Co., to the 
extent that DOE has the authority to regulate the energy efficiency of 
``furnace fans,'' it does not have authority to require manufacturers 
of central air conditioners to meet a separate standard for a component 
of the system already tested and rated under the SEER standard. (First 
Co., No. 10 at p.2.) Ingersoll Rand echoed First Co.'s sentiments, 
stating that further testing of air handlers would be redundant and add 
regulatory burden with no benefit because all air handlers are 
currently tested as part of a CAC or HP system with the fan power 
included in the SEER, EER, and HSPF descriptors. Ingersoll Rand added 
that consumer confusion is a likely unintended consequence. (Ingersoll 
Rand, No. 14 at p. 2.) Goodman submitted that cooling hours and energy 
consumption should be removed from the metric for all covered products 
to eliminate duplicate regulations. (Goodman, No. 17 at p. 4.)
    AHRI, Ingersoll Rand, and Morrison commented that modular blowers 
and hydronic air handlers should not be covered in this test procedure 
because they are beyond the authority provided by EPCA and are not 
currently regulated product classes. (AHRI, No. 16 at p. 2; Ingersoll 
Rand, No. 14 at p. 2; Morrison, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 
88.)
    Several interested parties commented that the test procedure should 
address operation of furnace fans as installed in the products in which 
they are sold rather than separately. DOE acknowledges that its NOPR 
may not have been clear in indicating that the test procedure proposal 
would apply to operation of fans while installed in these products. 
Consequently, some interested parties recommend that DOE consider the 
air handler (i.e. the entire HVAC product) and not just the furnace fan 
by testing furnace fans in-situ. The American Council for an Energy-
Efficient Economy (ACEEE) commented that limiting the scope of the rule 
to a narrow box around the sheet metal, fan motor, impeller and shroud 
is inappropriate because a large fraction of the electricity 
consumption of these devices has to do with the aerodynamics of the air 
handler cabinet, as shown in previous DOE work conducted by Ian Walker 
of Lawrence Berkley National Lab (LBNL). (ACEEE, Public Meeting 
Transcript, No. 23 at p. 16.) Adjuvant Consulting (``Adjuvant''), the 
Northwest Power and Conservation Council (NPCC), and the Northwest 
Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) agree with ACEEE that air handlers 
should be the covered product in this rulemaking. (Adjuvant, Public 
Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at pp. 29, 30; NPCC/NEEA, No. 22 at p. 3.) 
As mentioned above, the test procedure proposed in the NOPR and the 
test procedure proposed herein would apply to the energy use for air 
circulation of the furnace fan as factory-

[[Page 19611]]

installed in the HVAC product, rather than stand-alone performance.
    During the comment period of the test procedure NOPR, DOE published 
a Notice of Public Meeting and Availability of Preliminary Analysis 
Support Document for the furnace fans energy conservation standard 
rulemaking on July 10, 2012. 77 FR 40530. For the preliminary analysis, 
DOE decided that, although the title of the statutory section refers to 
``furnaces and boilers,'' the provision governing the products at issue 
in this rulemaking was written using notably broader language than the 
other provisions within the same section, referring to ``electricity 
used for purposes of circulating air through ductwork.'' \5\ (42 U.S.C. 
6295(f)) Consequently, DOE maintained its interpretation that its 
authority is not limited to circulation fans used in furnaces. DOE 
explained that it proposed to address in the current energy 
conservation standard rulemaking those products for which DOE has 
sufficient data and information to develop credible analyses, and that 
it may consider covering air circulation fans used in other HVAC 
products in a future rulemaking as data become available. DOE's 
preliminary analysis addressed furnace fans used in weatherized and 
non-weatherized gas furnaces, oil furnaces, electric furnaces, modular 
blowers, and hydronic air handlers. Many comments on DOE's preliminary 
analysis that address scope of coverage are discussed in this section 
because they provide additional commentary regarding the scope of 
applicability of the test procedure. The comments referenced below are 
available in docket number EERE-2010-BT-STD-0010 per the instructions 
provided in the ADDRESSES section of this SNOPR.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \5\ Please refer to Chapter 2 of the furnace fans preliminary 
analysis technical support document (TSD). The furnace fans 
preliminary analysis TSD is available on the DOE Web site: http://www1.eere.energy.gov/buildings/appliance_standards/product.aspx/productid/42.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Efficiency advocates expressed concern at the exclusion of furnace 
fans used in split-system CAC and heat pump products and requested that 
they be added to the scope. (Appliance Standards Awareness Project 
(ASAP), Preliminary Analysis, No. 43 at p. 17; Adjuvant, Preliminary 
Analysis, No. 43 at p. 39.) Specifically, efficiency advocates 
commented that although the fan energy use is incorporated as part of 
the efficiency metrics--SEER and HSPF--prescribed by DOE for these 
products (10 CFR part 430, subpart B, appendix M), the external static 
pressures (ESPs) used to determine the SEER and HSPF do not reflect as-
installed conditions, in which ESP is generally significantly higher. 
(ASAP, Preliminary Analysis, No. 43 at p. 38; Earthjustice, Preliminary 
Analysis, No. 49 at p. 1.) In a joint comment from ACEEE, ASAP, the 
National Consumer Law Center (NCLC), NEEA, and the Natural Resources 
Defense Council (NRDC), hereinafter referred to as ACEEE, et al., in 
addition to a comment from the California investor-owned utilities (CA 
IOU), efficiency advocates stated that the reference ESP of 0.1 to 0.2 
in. w.c. was too low when compared to the average field ESP of 0.73 in. 
w.c. as identified in the TSD. (ACEEE, et al., Preliminary Analysis, 
No. 55 at p. 1; CA IOU, Preliminary Analysis, No. 56 at p. 2.) ACEEE, 
et al. also noted that SEER and HSPF do not account for continuous 
circulation operation, which is expected to increase as stricter 
building codes call for tighter building envelopes. (ACEEE, et al., 
Preliminary Analysis, No. 55 at p. 2; CA IOU, Preliminary Analysis, No. 
56 at p. 3.) By excluding these products from the analysis, ACEEE, et 
al. believes that DOE is ignoring a significant fraction of the furnace 
fan market. (ACEEE, et al., Preliminary Analysis, No. 55 at p. 1.)
    Manufacturers' comments in response to the preliminary analysis 
regarding the scope of coverage were similar to their comments on the 
test procedure NOPR. In contrast to efficiency advocates and utilities, 
many manufacturers believe that the scope of coverage presented in the 
preliminary analysis exceeds the authority granted to DOE by EPCA and 
should not include any non-furnace products such as central air 
conditioners, heat pumps, or condensing unit-blower-coil combinations. 
(First Co., Preliminary Analysis, No. 53 at p. 1.)
    DOE notes that, although the title of this statutory section refers 
to ``furnaces and boilers,'' the applicable provision at 42 U.S.C. 
6295(f)(4)(D) was written using broader language than the other 
provisions within 42 U.S.C. 6295(f). Specifically, that statutory 
provision directs DOE to ``consider and prescribe energy conservation 
standards or energy use standards for electricity used for purposes of 
circulating air through ductwork.'' Such language could be interpreted 
as encompassing electrically-powered devices used in any residential 
HVAC product to circulate air through ductwork, not just furnaces, and 
DOE has received numerous comments on both sides of this issue. At the 
present time, however, DOE is only proposing test procedures for those 
circulation fans that are used in residential furnaces and modular 
blowers. As a result, DOE is not addressing public comments that 
pertain to fans in other types of HVAC products. The following list 
describes the furnace fans which DOE proposes to address as well as 
those not addressed in this rulemaking.
     Products addressed in this rulemaking: furnace fans used 
in weatherized and non-weatherized gas furnaces, oil furnaces, electric 
furnaces, and modular blowers.
     Products not addressed in this rulemaking: furnace fans 
used in other products, such as split-system CAC and heat pump air 
handlers, through-the-wall air handlers, SDHV air handlers, ERVs, HRVs, 
draft inducer fans, exhaust fans, or hydronic air handlers.
    DOE is using the term ``modular blower'' to refer to HVAC products 
powered by single-phase electricity that comprise an encased 
circulation blower that is intended to be the principal air circulation 
source for the living space of a residence. A modular blower is not 
contained within the same cabinet as a residential furnace, CAC, or 
heat pump. Instead, modular blowers are designed to be paired with 
separate residential HVAC products that provide heating and cooling, 
typically a separate CAC/HP coil-only unit. DOE finds that modular 
blowers and electric furnaces are very similar in design. In many 
cases, the only difference between a modular blower and electric 
furnace is the presence of an electric resistance heating kit. DOE is 
aware that some modular blower manufacturers offer electric resistance 
heating kits to be installed in their modular blower models so that the 
modular blowers can be converted to stand-alone electric furnaces. In 
addition, FER values for modular blowers can be easily calculated using 
the proposed test procedure. DOE proposes to address the furnace fans 
used in modular blowers in this rulemaking for these reasons. The 
proposed definition for ``modular blower'' is provided in section 
III.C.
    This proposed furnace fan test procedure would adopt a significant 
number of provisions from the DOE furnace test procedure and would not 
result in significant capital expenditures for manufacturers because 
they would not have to acquire or use any test equipment beyond the 
equipment that they already use to conduct the test method specified in 
the DOE furnace test procedure (i.e. the AFUE test setup). DOE also 
finds that the time to conduct a single furnace fan test according to 
its proposed furnace fan test procedure would be less than 3 hours and 
cost less than one percent of the manufacturer selling price of the 
product in which the

[[Page 19612]]

furnace fan is integrated. Section IV.B of this notice includes a more 
detailed discussion of manufacturer test burden. Consequently, DOE does 
not find that testing furnace fans according to this proposed test 
procedure would be unduly burdensome.
    After considering available information and public comments 
regarding the test procedure being applicable to fan operation in 
cooling mode, DOE maintains its proposal to account for the electrical 
consumption of furnace fans while performing all active mode functions 
(i.e., heating, cooling, and constant circulation). DOE recognizes that 
furnace fans are used not just for circulating air through ductwork 
during heating operation, but also for circulating air during cooling 
and constant-circulation operation. DOE anticipates that higher 
airflow-control settings are factory set for cooling operation. 
Therefore, DOE expects that the electrical energy consumption of a 
furnace fan is generally higher while performing the cooling function. 
Additionally, the design of the fan as well as its typical operating 
characteristics (i.e., ESP levels during operation in different modes) 
is directly related to the performance requirements in cooling mode. 
DOE is also concerned that excluding some functions from consideration 
in rating furnace fan performance would incentivize manufacturers to 
design fans that are optimized to perform efficiently at the selected 
rating airflow-control settings but that are not efficient over the 
broad range of field operating conditions. In DOE's view, in order to 
obtain a complete assessment of overall performance and a metric that 
reflects the product's electrical energy consumption during a 
representative average use cycle, the test procedure must account for 
electrical consumption in a set of airflow-control settings that spans 
all active mode functions. This would ensure a more accurate accounting 
of the benefits of improved furnace fans.
    DOE is aware that electrical consumption of the fan is accounted 
for in the SEER and HSPF metrics that DOE uses for CAC and heat pump 
products. However, DOE does not agree with First Co.'s interpretation 
that the EPCA language limits DOE's authority to setting one standard 
for each major product function and precludes DOE from rating furnace 
fan consumption in operating modes that are accounted for by these 
metrics. (42 U.S.C. 6295(o)(5)) EPCA's language in section 6295(o)(5) 
is phrased in the permissive, rather than the restrictive.\6\ In DOE's 
view, this permissive language does not impose a limitation on DOE's 
authority to regulate fan electrical consumption for these products 
across all operating modes. Furthermore, it is inapposite in this 
situation, where two different products are being regulated, one the 
CAC or heat pump product, and one the separate furnace fan product, 
which may or may not be incorporated into a CAC or heat pump. SEER and 
HSPF are used to test cooling and heating performance of a CAC or heat 
pump product, whereas FER rates airflow performance of a furnace fan 
product. While furnace fan airflow performance contributes to cooling 
and heating performance, manufacturers can improve SEER and HSPF 
without improving fan performance. In short, SEER- and HSPF-based 
standards do not directly target the efficiency of furnace fans. DOE 
recognizes that the energy savings in cooling mode from higher-
efficiency furnace fans used in some higher efficiency CAC and heat 
pumps is already accounted for in the analysis of standards on those 
products as a result. DOE conducted its preliminary analysis to avoid 
double-counting these benefits by excluding furnace fan electricity 
savings that were already included in DOE's analysis for CAC and heat 
pump products. Section 2.7 of chapter 2 and chapter 8 of the 
preliminary analysis TSD provide a discussion of this issue.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \6\ Section 6295(o)(5) provides as follows: ``The Secretary may 
set more than 1 energy conservation standard for products that serve 
more than 1 major function by setting 1 energy conservation standard 
for each major function.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

B. AHRI Test Method

    In the NOPR in response to comments on the June 2010 Framework 
Document, DOE proposed to incorporate by reference ANSI/AMCA 210-07, 
citing comments that manufacturers currently use ANSI/AMCA 210-07 to 
measure furnace fan performance. The NOPR provides a more detailed 
discussion of DOE's consideration of ANSI/AMCA 210-07 and alternative 
reference standards. 77 FR at 28677 (May 15, 2012). Commenting on the 
NOPR, manufacturers recommended that DOE incorporate provisions from 
ASHRAE 37 instead of ANSI/AMCA 210-07. Ingersoll Rand commented that 
fan performance data from a DOE test procedure that references ANSI/
AMCA 210-07 would not be consistent with existing data, which is 
generated using ASHRAE 37. (Ingersoll Rand, Public Meeting Transcript, 
No. 23 at p. 30) Lennox asserted that if DOE uses a test procedure that 
specifies an airflow calculation, then ANSI/AMCA 210 is not the 
appropriate standard. According to Lennox, ASHRAE 37 would be more 
appropriate if DOE specifies airflow calculations. (Lennox, No. 12 at 
p. 4.) Goodman stated that its airflow measurements for furnaces are 
currently performed using ASHRAE 37 setups and calculations. Further, 
Goodman pointed out that DOE test procedures to measure airflow and 
power input for central air conditioners and heat pumps as defined in 
Appendix M to Subpart B of 10 CFR part 430 require that furnace fan 
performance be measured per ASHRAE 37 for use in determining ratings 
for SEER and HSPF. Therefore, according to Goodman, DOE's proposal to 
use ANSI/AMCA 210-07 would require manufacturers to test the same 
product with two different test methods to rate furnace fans. Goodman 
believes that such an outcome is contrary to Congressional intent and 
the consumers' best interests. (Goodman, No. 17 at p. 4.) Morrison 
added that ANSI/AMCA 210-07 is designed to test stand-alone fans, while 
ASHRAE 37 is more appropriate for testing fans as part of appliances. 
(Morrison, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 38.) Interested 
parties commented that in-situ testing (i.e. installed in the HVAC 
product) is more appropriate than testing the furnace fan removed from 
the product in which it is integrated. In a joint comment, ASAP, ACEEE, 
NRDC, and NCLC, hereinafter referred to as the ``Joint Commenters,'' 
supported DOE's decision to test the furnace fan as factory-installed 
in an HVAC product, which would more accurately account for as-deployed 
energy consumption. (Joint Commenters, No. 13 at p. 2.) ACEEE explained 
that the impacts of the aerodynamics of the HVAC product cabinet on fan 
performance cannot be measured by testing the fan removed from the 
cabinet. Unico, Inc. (``Unico'') and Ingersoll Rand echoed these 
sentiments, stating that the furnace fan should be tested as part of 
the appliance because the appliance components dictate fan performance. 
(Unico, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 94; Ingersoll Rand, 
Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 97.) Adjuvant stated that 
testing air handlers is more difficult than DOE's proposal depicts 
because of the necessity to specify appurtenances and other issues like 
cabinet leakage. (Adjuvant, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at pp. 
29, 30, 47.)
    DOE agrees with interested parties that furnace fans should be 
tested in a laboratory and as factory-installed in the HVAC product 
with which it is

[[Page 19613]]

integrated (i.e., in-situ) to account for the impacts of airflow path 
design on furnace fan performance. In the NOPR, DOE included language 
in the proposed regulatory text that specified that furnace fans be 
tested in-situ. 77 FR at 28699 (May 15, 2012). DOE recognizes that the 
preamble language of the NOPR may not have been clear in this regard. 
In this notice, DOE proposes to specify that furnace fans be tested in-
situ.
    In written comments, AHRI (with support from Goodman, Ingersoll 
Rand, Lennox, and Morrison) proposed an alternative test method that 
they argue would result in accurate and repeatable FER values that are 
comparable to the FER values resulting from the test procedure proposed 
in the NOPR, but at significantly reduced test burden. (AHRI, No. 16 at 
p. 3; Goodman, No. 17 at p. 4; Ingersoll Rand, No. 14 at p. 1; 
Morrison, No. 21 at p. 3.) AHRI recommends that DOE specify the 
following procedures to generate the measurements used to rate furnace 
fan performance (AHRI, No. 16 at p. 3):
     The furnace should be set up on the test stand that is 
used to measure AFUE.
     Initially, the furnace should be operated in the maximum 
airflow-control setting having adjusted the duct restrictions to 
achieve the external static pressure (ESP) proposed in the NOPR while 
in the heating mode (i.e., firing the burner). Fuel input, temperature 
rise and power should be measured.
     Subsequently, power should be measured while operating the 
furnace in the heating airflow-control setting and again while 
operating the furnace in the constant circulation airflow-control 
setting, both without changing the initial duct restrictions in any way 
and without firing the furnace.
     The maximum airflow used to normalize the FER metric 
should be calculated (instead of measured directly) based on the 
measured temperature rise, measured fuel input, AFUE, and the known 
heat capacity of air.
     Measurements should be taken at nominal voltage and no 
voltage adjustments should be allowed.
     FER should be calculated using the annual operating hours 
that DOE proposed in the NOPR.
    AHRI estimates an approximate 80-90% reduction in testing burden 
through the adoption of its proposed test method. AHRI stated that this 
reduction is due, in part, to manufacturers not having to acquire or 
use any test equipment beyond the equipment that is already used to 
conduct the testing specified in the DOE furnace test procedure (i.e., 
the AFUE test setup). (AHRI, No. 16 at p. 3.) Most of the products to 
which this procedure applies are furnaces subject to the DOE furnace 
test procedure. Rheem Manufacturing Company (``Rheem''), Morrison, and 
Lennox also identified using the same test stand for FER and AFUE 
testing as an opportunity to minimize burden on manufacturers. (Rheem, 
No. 25 at p. 4; Morrison, No. 21 at p. 7; Lennox, No. 12 at p. 4.) 
Lennox stated that by requiring an additional setup and test process 
far outside the AFUE testing requirements, the burden on the 
engineering and documentation side of the proposed procedure is 
significant. (Lennox, No. 12 at p. 4.) Mortex, a small manufacturer, 
requested that furnace fan testing have a minimum burden on industry 
and be within the economic capabilities of the small manufacturers that 
would be impacted. Mortex explained that small manufacturers are low 
production volume, high product mix manufacturers and only build 
products when they are ordered. (Mortex, No. 18 at p. 2.) Goodman 
echoed Mortex's sentiments, stating that the cost to initiate and 
perform tests using the certified test facility required by ANSI/AMCA 
210 as proposed in the NOPR is disproportionally burdensome to small 
manufacturers that produce 100 to 200 made-to-order units each needing 
individual certification. (Mortex, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at 
p. 21, 232; Goodman, No. 17 at p. 2.) According to Mortex, capturing 
the airflow and electrical input power at a few additional airflow-
control settings as part of testing for AFUE and Eae, as 
suggested by AHRI, would be relatively inexpensive. Mortex added that 
this simplified method should not require any capital outlay as 
compared to DOE's proposed method, which is estimated to require 
$150,000 for a code tester setup. (Mortex, No. 18 at p. 2.) Mortex 
stated during the public meeting that using the AFUE set up and 
calculating airflow based on temperature rise to rate furnace fans 
would be feasible for small manufacturers. Mortex added the caveat that 
such a method would only be feasible if paired with a reasonable 
confidence level (i.e., the statistical confidence limit expressed as a 
percentage that must be achieved for the results of the group of 
samples tested according to the proposed sampling plan). (Mortex, 
Public Meeting Transcript, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 
234.) A detailed discussion of the proposed sampling plan, including 
the proposed confidence limit, is provided in section III.D.
    AHRI attributed some of the projected reduction in burden of its 
recommended test method to the labor savings that manufacturers would 
experience with respect to conducting tests and calculations. (AHRI, 
No. 16 at p. 3.) Allied Air Enterprises (``Allied Air'') commented that 
the time and cost of conducting the proposed test procedure would be 
unduly burdensome. (Allied Air, No 23 at p. 20.) Rheem and Lennox 
commented that measuring airflow is difficult, labor- and capital-
intensive, and not necessary to rate furnace fan electrical energy use. 
(Rheem, No. 25 at p. 3; Lennox, No. 12 at p. 4.) As mentioned 
previously, Mortex suggested that airflow could be calculated by using 
the temperature rise methodology already employed for the DOE furnace 
test procedure prior to AHRI submitting its recommended alternative 
test method. (Mortex, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 234.) 
Goodman performed tests according to both DOE's proposed procedure and 
AHRI's suggested method and found that testing time is reduced by 
almost 60% using AHRI's method. (Goodman, No. 17 at p. 3.) Rheem also 
conducted tests according to both procedures and stated that the time 
to test a single-stage furnace was reduced from 4 hours to 45 minutes 
by using the AHRI method. (Rheem, No. 25 at p. 4.)
    AHRI claimed that its suggested method would eliminate potential 
issues associated with fitting quadratic curves to the test data to 
derive FER as proposed in the NOPR. According to AHRI and Morrison, the 
quadratic curves can be easily manipulated. (AHRI, No. 16 at p. 3; 
Morrison, No. 21 at p. 5.) Furthermore, AHRI stated that the quadratic 
curves can be significantly skewed through a single incorrect 
measurement. (AHRI, No. 16 at p. 3.) Morrison agrees that DOE should 
abandon the system curve approach in favor of AHRI's proposed method 
because eliminating the need to curve fit and find the intersection of 
second order polynomials would reduce the burden on manufacturers. 
Morrison stated that the added burden of the NOPR method does not 
provide any added value to the purpose of saving energy, guiding 
consumers in making correct choices, or enhancing the regulatory 
process. (Morrison, No. 21 at p. 5.) NEEA explained that the need for 
quadratic curve-fitting could be eliminated by establishing the 
specified external static pressure values in a specific mode, and then 
running the remaining tests in other modes without modifying the 
physical test apparatus set-up. NEEA and NPPC suggested that DOE 
consider this simplified approach. According to NEEA and NPPC, the

[[Page 19614]]

result would be testing an air handler against a fixed intake and 
discharge configuration, accepting whatever static pressure the system 
generates when testing in modes other than the initial mode. NEEA and 
NPCC contended that this is how duct systems work in the field--they 
are in a fixed physical configuration and the air handler deals with 
the external static pressure created and imposed, regardless of what 
mode it is in. (NEEA/NPCC, No. 22 at pp. 2-3.)
    Goodman commented that test results show that FER values generated 
using AHRI's test method are within 5% of the FER values generated 
using the test procedure proposed in the NOPR. (Goodman, No. 17 at p. 
4.) Rheem's test results show similar results. (Rheem, No. 25 at p. 4.)
    Efficiency advocates agreed that some hybrid of reference standards 
could be used to develop a test procedure that is less burdensome than 
wholly adopting ANSI/AMCA 210. However, the Joint Commenters stated 
that simply implementing ASHRAE 37 is an incomplete solution because 
this method lacks an electrical energy consumption measurement. (Joint 
Commenters, No. 13 at p. 3.) The CA IOU advised DOE to develop a hybrid 
test procedure that draws from AMCA 210, ASHRAE 37, and AHRI 210-240 
but emphasized that portions of AMCA 210 are needed for measuring fan 
power at different airflow rates. (CA IOU, No. 20 at p. 1.) While 
unclear from CA IOU's comments, DOE infers that the CA IOU are 
referring to provisions for measuring fan performance in multiple 
airflow-control settings.
    In today's notice, DOE proposes to adopt a modified version of the 
alternative test method proposed by AHRI. DOE agrees that the key 
concept embodied in the alternative method suggested by AHRI and 
manufacturers (using temperature rise to determine airflow) can be a 
viable approach to obtain accurate and repeatable FER values at 
significantly reduced burden. The methods suggested by AHRI are already 
used in existing industry and DOE test methods. ASHRAE 37 includes 
determining airflow based on temperature rise as an alternative method 
to using differential pressure across nozzles. In addition, the DOE 
test procedure for furnaces includes well established and accurate 
methods for measurement of temperature rise, fuel input, and steady 
state combustion efficiency based on flue gas temperature and carbon 
dioxide concentrations. Additionally, DOE recognizes the opportunity to 
reduce test burden by: (1) Aligning the furnace fan test set up and 
procedures with those of the existing DOE furnace test procedure; and 
(2) maintaining the same duct restrictions throughout the test after 
initial reference system conditions are met in lieu of the previously 
proposed methods of making multiple determinations in each airflow-
control setting and curve-fitting to identify operating points. DOE 
also agrees with advocates and utilities that the proposed test 
procedure should reflect field ESP conditions and measure furnace fan 
electrical input power in multiple airflow-control settings. The AHRI 
method includes provisions that meet these goals. DOE has considered 
the AHRI approach and has concluded that some clarifications and 
modifications are necessary to make the approach more practicable and 
accurate. For these reasons, DOE proposes to adopt a modified version 
of the alternative furnace fan test procedure proposed by AHRI.
    DOE proposes the following additions and modifications to the test 
method recommended by AHRI:
     Airflow in the maximum airflow-control setting would be 
calculated based on measured air temperature rise when the HVAC product 
is in a heating-mode airflow-control setting rather than in the maximum 
airflow-control setting.
     In the airflow calculation presented by AHRI, AFUE would 
be replaced by a function of steady state efficiency 
(EffySS), measured fuel energy input rate (QIN), 
jacket losses (LJ), and fan electrical input power 
(EHeat) measured according to ASHRAE 103-2007 at the 
specified operating conditions.
     External static pressure would be measured as specified in 
ASHRAE 37.
     Additional thermocouples would be added to the outlet 
grids used to measure temperature rise.
     Use of a mixer, as described in ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 41.1-
1986 (RA 2006), would be required to minimize outlet flow temperature 
gradients if the temperature difference between any two thermocouples 
is greater than 1.5[emsp14][deg]F.
     Greater temperature measurement accuracy and tighter 
stabilization criteria would be specified.
     The 18 [deg]F temperature rise minimum specified by ASHRAE 
37-2005 would be incorporated by reference.
    Each of the listed modifications is described and explained in more 
detail in subsequent sections.
1. Calculating Maximum Airflow
    AHRI proposes to calculate airflow based on measured temperature 
rise, rated input heat capacity, and AFUE using the following equation 
(AHRI, No. 26 at p. 23): 
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.030


Where:

Q = airflow, in cubic feet per minute (CFM),
AFUE = annual fuel utilization efficiency, as determined by the DOE 
furnace test procedure,
QIN = fuel energy maximum nameplate input rate at steady-state 
operating (including any pilot light input), in British Thermal 
Units per hour (Btu/h),
    1.08 = Conversion from airflow and temperature rise to heating 
rate, and
    [Delta]T = measured temperature rise.

    DOE is concerned that using AFUE and the nameplate fuel energy 
input rate, as defined in AHRI's proposal, would not result in accurate 
representations of airflow at the proposed operating conditions 
because: (1) Neither parameter is measured at the proposed operating 
conditions; and (2) AFUE is a function of off-cycle parameters such as 
infiltration heat loss and pilot light heat generation, which do not 
contribute to the temperature rise proposed to be used to calculate 
airflow. While temperature rise would be measured at the ESP levels 
outlined in AHRI's alternative method (which are equivalent to those 
proposed in the NOPR and herein), AFUE and nameplate input rate would 
be determined based on measurements taken at the ESP levels required by 
the DOE furnace test procedure (i.e. specified in ASHRAE 103-1993), 
which are significantly lower. Also, results from a 2002 comparison of 
AFUE and steady stat efficiency show that the steady state efficiency 
ranges from zero to three percent higher than AFUE.\7\ More recent DOE 
tests yielded similar results, with steady state efficiency reaching as 
high as six percent higher than AFUE. DOE proposes to use steady state 
efficiency and fuel energy input measured at the proposed operating 
conditions, instead of AFUE and nameplate fuel energy input, to address 
these discrepancies and minimize the resulting inaccuracies in 
calculated airflow. Manufacturers would only be required to take two 
additional measurements (flue or stack gas temperature and carbon 
dioxide concentration) using equipment that is already in place for 
AFUE testing as a result of the proposed modification. DOE recognizes 
that replacing AFUE with steady state combustion efficiency at 
operating conditions would also require that jacket losses and the 
usable heat generated by the motor be included

[[Page 19615]]

in the calculation. The DOE test procedure for furnaces already 
includes methods for accounting for these additional factors. 
Accordingly, DOE proposes to use the following equation to calculate 
airflow:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \7\ Public Workshop on Residential Furnace and Boiler Venting. 
May 2002. http://www1.eere.energy.gov/buildings/appliance_standards/furnboil_050802_reswh.html. 
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.019


---------------------------------------------------------------------------
Where:

Q = airflow in CFM,
EffySS = steady state efficiency in % as determined according to 
ASHRAE 103-2007 at the specified operating conditions,
LJ = jacket loss in % as determined according to ASHRAE 103-2007 at 
specified operating conditions,
QIN = measured fuel energy input in Btu/h at specified operating 
conditions based on the fuel's high heating value determined as 
required in section 8.2.1.3 or 8.2.2.3 of ASHRAE 103-2007,
3413 = conversion of kW to Btu/h;
EHeat = electrical energy to the furnace fan motor in kW that is 
recovered as useable heat,
1.08 = conversion from airflow and temperature rise to heating rate, 
and
[Delta]T = temperature rise measured at specified operating 
conditions.

    DOE requests comments on the proposed changes to the equation for 
calculating airflow. DOE recognizes that the use of the 1.08 conversion 
factor assumes that the airflow has standard air properties (e.g., 
standard air density and specific heat). DOE anticipates that the 
properties of the airflow under test may deviate from these values at 
actual test conditions, resulting in inaccurate airflow calculation 
results. DOE expects that variation in airflow density would be the 
significant driver of these inaccuracies. Therefore, DOE also requests 
comment on whether the conversion factor should be adjusted by the 
barometric pressure at test conditions. (See Issue 1 under ``Issues on 
Which DOE Seeks Comment'' in section V.B of this SNOPR.)
    DOE is concerned that certain of the test conditions proposed by 
AHRI could lead to test results that are not representative of actual 
furnace fan energy use. AHRI's recommended method specifies that the 
maximum airflow be calculated based on a temperature rise measurement 
taken while operating the furnace in the maximum airflow-control 
setting and firing the burner. (AHRI, No. 26 at p. 21.) DOE is aware 
that the maximum airflow-control setting is often designated for 
cooling operation and not for heating. DOE anticipates that firing the 
burner while the furnace is in the maximum airflow-control setting is 
not typical of furnace operation, and that achieving this combination 
of settings by interfacing with the furnace controls may not be 
possible. The AHRI approach also specifies electrical input power in 
the heating airflow-control setting be measured without firing the 
burner.
    DOE proposes to modify the AHRI recommended method to specify that 
maximum airflow be calculated based on a temperature rise measurement 
taken while operating the furnace in the rated heating airflow-control 
setting and firing the burner at the heat input capacity associated 
with that airflow-control setting. For more details regarding the 
proposed rated airflow-control settings, refer to Table II.2 in the 
Summary of the NOPR, 77 FR at 28676 (May 15, 2012). DOE expects that 
these proposed combinations of operating conditions are typical of 
field furnace use. These requirements would help ensure that test 
results are representative of actual furnace fan energy use, and would 
minimize the potential difficulties associated with firing the furnace 
in an airflow-control setting not intended for heating. DOE is not 
proposing any changes in this notice to the rated airflow-control 
settings proposed in the NOPR. The procedure proposed herein would 
require that the temperature rise measurement be taken in the default 
heating airflow-control setting for single-stage furnaces and in the 
default low heating airflow-control setting for multi-stage and 
modulating furnaces.
    DOE recognizes that, compared to AHRI's suggested method, more 
complex calculations are required to determine the airflow in the 
maximum airflow-control setting based on a temperature rise measurement 
in the heating airflow-control setting. DOE proposes to specify that 
ESP measurements be taken in conjunction with the temperature rise and 
furnace fan electrical input power measurements for each rated airflow-
control setting. Airflow in the rated heating airflow-control setting 
can be calculated using the airflow calculation equation proposed 
above. Once the airflow in the rated heating airflow-control setting 
has been calculated, the physical constant (kref) can be calculated 
using the equation below. kref characterizes the reference system duct 
restrictions set in the initial test conditions. 
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.020


Where:

kref = physical constant that characterizes the reference system 
duct restrictions,
ESPHeat = external static pressure measured at the operating point 
in the heating airflow-control setting, and
QHeat = airflow in the rated heating airflow-control setting.

    The same value for kref can be used to characterize the system for 
all airflow-control settings because the same duct restrictions would 
be used for all test settings. Airflow in the maximum airflow-control 
setting would be calculated using kref and the ESP measured in the 
maximum airflow-control setting using the following equation. 
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.021

    DOE is aware that ESP, airflow, and electrical input measurements 
could vary due to the different physical properties of air 
(particularly density) at higher temperature. As a result, a different 
kref may apply when the furnace is firing as compared with room-
temperature operation without firing. To a first order, the pressure 
drop imposed by flow through ductwork can be approximated as being 
proportional to fluid density multiplied by the square of the velocity. 
The velocity for a given mass flow is proportional to the inverse of 
the density. The density is inversely

[[Page 19616]]

proportional to absolute temperature (i.e. the temperature expressed in 
degrees Kelvin or Rankine). Hence, the relationship between ESP and 
temperature for a fixed mass flow of air approximately exhibits the 
following proportionality: 
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.022



Where:
[rho] = Air density,
v = Air velocity,
T = Air temperature in degrees Fahrenheit ([deg]F), and
460 = Conversion from degrees Fahrenheit to degrees Rankine.

    For operation of a furnace, the higher ESP that occurs when it is 
firing would reduce the mass flow of air. Consequently, the value of 
QMax, as calculated according to the QMax 
equation proposed by DOE above would be slightly lower than the actual 
maximum airflow. This is because ESPHeat would be slightly elevated and 
QHeat slightly reduced for the hot flow that occurs during the 
measurement relative to the way the system would behave for room 
temperature operating conditions. DOE proposes an adjustment in the 
QMax equation proposed by DOE above to account for the elevated 
temperature in the ductwork during the measurement, as follows: 
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.023


Where:

THeat = Outlet air temperature in the heating airflow-control 
setting, and
TMax = Outlet air temperature in the maximum airflow-control 
setting.

    DOE requests comment on the proposed adjustment to the QMax 
calculation above, which would result in greater accuracy in 
determination of the maximum airflow rate. DOE also requests comments 
on the proposed modified method for calculating airflow in the maximum 
airflow-control setting. Specifically, DOE requests comments on how 
ESP, furnace fan electrical input power, and airflow measurements are 
impacted by temperature rise. DOE also seeks comment on how those 
relationships would impact the accuracy of the calculated value of QMax 
and, ultimately, FER. (See Issue 2 under ``Issues on Which DOE Seeks 
Comment'' in section V.B of this SNOPR.)
    DOE recognizes that a more accurate measurement of temperature rise 
could be made at higher temperature rises because the allowable error 
in temperature measurements would represent a lower percentage of the 
overall temperature rise. For example, the maximum allowable proposed 
error of  1 [deg]F ( 0.5 [deg]F at both the 
inlet and outlet) would represent an approximate error of 3 percent for 
a temperature rise of 30 [deg]F, and half as much for a 60 [deg]F 
temperature rise. DOE is aware that operating the furnace in the 
reduced heat setting for multi-stage furnaces would result in a lower 
temperature rise than if fired in the maximum heat setting. DOE 
requests comment on whether the maximum airflow should be calculated 
based on the temperature rise measured while operating the furnace fan 
in the maximum default heat airflow-control setting and at maximum heat 
input capacity to minimize the effect of temperature measurement error 
on the overall FER calculation. (See Issue 3 under ``Issues on Which 
DOE Seeks Comment'' in section V.B of this SNOPR.)
    DOE is concerned that at higher elevations the temperature rise 
would be greater due to reduced air mass flow, resulting in a higher 
calculated airflow. DOE requests comments on the magnitude of potential 
elevation impacts on calculated airflow and FER values. DOE also 
requests comments on whether specifications, such as a maximum test 
elevation or elevation adjustment factor, should be used to avoid 
circumvention associated with conducting this test at high elevation. 
(See Issue 4 under ``Issues on Which DOE Seeks Comment'' in section V.B 
of this SNOPR.)
2. ASHRAE 37 External Static Pressure Measurements
    DOE believes that more detailed specifications for setting and 
measuring ESP are required than those in the AHRI suggested test 
method. AHRI's suggested test method specifies that the reference 
system ESP be achieved by ``symmetrically restricting the outlet of the 
test duct.'' (AHRI, No. 26 at pp. 8, 19, 20) The AHRI test method does 
not provide details on the equipment or procedures that should be used 
to meet this requirement. (DOE is aware that independent test labs 
typically apply cardboard ducting or tape to the corners of the outlet 
to achieve the desired ESP.) DOE requests comments on whether one or 
more methods for restricting the outlet duct should be included in the 
test procedure. (See Issue 5 under ``Issues on Which DOE Seeks 
Comment'' in section V.B of this SNOPR.)
    According to AHRI's suggested test method, use of a return air duct 
in the test setup is optional. (AHRI, No. 26 at p. 20.) DOE proposes to 
also allow for the optional use of a return air duct; however, DOE is 
concerned that ESP may differ when measured with a return air duct 
compared to when measured without a return air duct. DOE believes that 
each different motor type may react differently with the use of a 
return air duct, but the impacts on the FER measurements may be small. 
DOE requests comments on the ESP measurements and FER values that 
result when not using a return air duct compared to when a return air 
duct is used, and whether the test procedure should explicitly require 
use of a return air duct. (See Issue 6 under ``Issues on Which DOE 
Seeks Comment'' in section V.B of this SNOPR.)
    AHRI's suggested test method specifies that ESP measurements be 
made between the furnace openings and any restrictions or elbows in the 
test plenums or ducts and as close as possible to the air supply and 
return openings of the furnace. (AHRI, No. 26 at p. 20) DOE proposes to 
incorporate by reference the ASHRAE 37 provisions for measuring ESP 
(sections 6.4 and 6.5), which are consistent with AHRI's suggested 
specifications and provide more detail. DOE anticipates that these more 
detailed specifications would minimize variations in test setups and, 
in turn, improve repeatability. DOE proposes to specify that ESP be 
measured according to the setup illustrated in Figure 8 of ASHRAE 37 
when a return air duct is used. This setup would require direct 
measurement of the static pressure difference between the inlet and 
outlet of the unit under test as opposed to taking separate static 
measurements at the inlet and outlet and calculating the difference 
between the two measurements. Direct measurement in this context means 
that the inlet and outlet pressure signal tubing would be connected on 
opposite sides of a single manometer, rather than using two manometers 
or transducers, each being open to the ambient on one

[[Page 19617]]

side. DOE proposes to specify that ESP be measured according to the 
setup illustrated in Figure 7 of ASHRAE 37 when a return air duct is 
not used. DOE does not anticipate any issues with specifying ASHRAE 37 
provisions for measuring ESP because, as mentioned above, manufacturers 
commented that ASHRAE 37 is a widely used standard for testing HVAC 
products and is recommended for rating furnace fans. DOE requests 
comments on its proposed provisions for measuring ESP, which are 
adopted from ASHRAE 37-2005. (See Issue 7 under ``Issues on Which DOE 
Seeks Comment'' in section V.B of this SNOPR.)
3. Temperature Rise Measurements
    DOE recognizes that FER results generated according to the proposed 
test procedure are sensitive to the temperature rise measurement that 
would be used to calculate the airflow in the maximum airflow-control 
setting. DOE expects that the equipment and methods used to measure 
temperature rise in the AHRI method can be improved, which would result 
in a more accurate and repeatable test procedure. The modifications 
that DOE proposes are mostly derived from the provisions of the 
alternative method for calculating airflow specified in section 7.7.1.2 
and 7.7.4 of ASHRAE 37-2005.
    AHRI's recommended method adopts ASHRAE 103-2007 provisions that 
specify that temperature measurements shall have an error no greater 
than 2 [deg]F. In the worst case scenario, an error of 2 
[deg]F on both the inlet and outlet temperature measurements could 
result in an error of 4 [deg]F. DOE estimates that an error of 4 [deg]F 
for the temperature rise measurement could yield an error of 
approximately 10% in FER for a typical temperature rise between 30 
[deg]F and 60 [deg]F.
    DOE proposes to specify that temperature measurements have an error 
no greater than 0.5 [deg]F. The accuracy requirements of 
existing test standards that are used to test these products are more 
stringent--Table 1 in section 4 of ASHRAE 37-2005 requires temperature 
measurement accuracy of 0.2 [deg]F. DOE requests comment on 
whether 0.5 [deg]F is reasonably achievable. (See Issue 8 
under ``Issues on Which DOE Seeks Comment'' in section V.B of this 
SNOPR.)
    AHRI's proposed method does not include a minimum temperature rise 
requirement. DOE is concerned that the allowable error in temperature 
measurements coupled with a low temperature rise could result in 
inaccurate test results. For this reason, DOE proposes to require a 
minimum temperature rise of 18 [deg]F, as specified in ASHRAE 37-2005. 
DOE notes that with its proposed 0.5 [deg]F temperature 
measurement accuracy requirement and its proposed minimum 18 [deg]F 
temperature rise, the maximum potential error in measured airflow 
associated with the temperature rise measurement is approximately 5.6%. 
DOE requests comments on whether a minimum temperature rise should be 
required and, if so, what is an appropriate value for the minimum 
temperature rise. (See Issue 9 under ``Issues on Which DOE Seeks 
Comment'' in section V.B of this SNOPR.)
    AHRI's recommended method adopts the stabilization criteria of the 
DOE test procedure for residential furnaces. 10 CFR part 430, subpart 
B, appendix N, section 7.0. According to section 7.0 of the DOE test 
procedure for furnaces, which references section 8.0 of ASHRAE 103-
1993, steady-state conditions for gas and oil furnaces are attained as 
indicated by a temperature variation in three successive readings, 
taken 15 minutes apart, of not more than:
     3 [deg]F in the stack gas temperature for furnaces 
equipped with draft diverters;
     5 [deg]F in the stack gas temperature for furnaces 
equipped with either draft hoods, direct exhaust, or direct vent 
systems; and
     1 [deg]F in the flue gas temperature for condensing 
furnaces.
    For electric furnaces, steady-state conditions are reached as 
indicated by a temperature variation of not more than 5 [deg]F in the 
outlet temperature in four successive temperature readings taken 15 
minutes apart.
    DOE is concerned that the temperature variations specified in the 
above stabilization criteria are not stringent enough to maximize 
accuracy and repeatability for evaluating furnace fan performance. As 
mentioned above, the FER results generated according to the proposed 
test procedure are sensitive to temperature variation because they are 
a function of the airflow calculated using measured temperature rise. 
DOE proposes the following stabilization criteria to address this 
concern. For testing furnace fans used in gas and oil furnaces, DOE 
proposes that steady-state conditions are attained as indicated by a 
temperature variation in three successive readings, taken 15 minutes 
apart, of not more than:
     1.5 [deg]F in the stack gas temperature for furnaces 
equipped with draft diverters;
     2.5 [deg]F in the stack gas temperature for furnaces 
equipped with either draft hoods, direct exhaust, or direct vent 
systems; and
     0.5 [deg]F in the flue gas temperature for condensing 
furnaces.
    For electric furnaces, DOE proposes that steady-state conditions 
are reached as indicated by a temperature variation of not more than 1 
[deg]F in the outlet temperature in four successive temperature 
readings taken 15 minutes apart. DOE requests comments on whether the 
proposed stabilization criteria are reasonably achievable, and whether 
the stabilization criteria for the AFUE test would be sufficient to 
assure that the entire furnace has thermally stabilized to a point such 
that the measured air temperature rise would no longer significantly 
change. (See Issue 10 under ``Issues on Which DOE Seeks Comment'' in 
section V.B of this SNOPR.)
    AHRI's approach does not include provisions to account for 
potential inlet or outlet airflow temperature gradients. DOE is 
concerned that temperature gradients are likely to be present, which 
would compromise the accuracy and repeatability of the temperature rise 
measurement results. DOE proposes to specify the use of a mixer, as 
depicted in Figure 10 of ASHRAE 37-2005, which references ANSI/ASHRAE 
Standard 41.1-1986 (RA 2001), to minimize outlet flow temperature 
gradients if the temperature difference between any two thermocouples 
of the outlet air temperature grid is greater than 1.5 [deg]F. DOE has 
not had the opportunity to evaluate the potential inaccuracies 
associated with allowing larger temperature gradients, and instead 
bases this selection on its use as the maximum allowable temperature 
difference threshold in ASHRAE 210/240 for the ``C'' and ``D'' tests 
for CAC products. These tests use temperature rise and airflow 
measurement to determine cooling capacity. The proposed furnace fan 
test method uses the inverse of the relationship for these factors to 
determine airflow based on measured temperature rise and input heat 
capacity. Hence, the implications for temperature gradients to result 
in measurement errors are equivalent. DOE requests comment on whether 
the effect on static pressure of adding a mixer would prevent the test 
setup from achieving the ESP levels specified in the DOE test procedure 
for residential furnaces or the lower ESP levels specified in this 
notice for measuring fan performance in the lowest rated airflow 
setting. DOE also seeks comment on whether additional thermocouples are 
needed to measure the inlet air temperature. (See Issue 11 under 
``Issues

[[Page 19618]]

on Which DOE Seeks Comment'' in section V.B of this SNOPR.)

C. Definitions

    DOE proposes to adopt all definitions in section 3 of ASHRAE 103, 
which are already codified in section 2 of Appendix N to Subpart B of 
Part 430. DOE also proposes to include the additional and modified 
definitions listed below.
     Active mode means the condition in which the product in 
which the furnace fan is integrated is connected to a power source and 
circulating air through ductwork.
     Airflow-control settings are programmed or wired control 
system configurations that control a fan to achieve discrete, differing 
ranges of airflow, often designated for performing a specific HVAC 
function (e.g., cooling, heating, or constant circulation), without 
manual adjustment other than interaction with a user-operable control 
such as a thermostat that meets the manufacturer specifications for 
installed use found in the product literature shipped with the unit.
     Default airflow-control settings are the airflow-control 
settings specified for installed use by the manufacturer in the product 
literature shipped with the product in which the furnace fan is 
integrated. In instances where a manufacturer specifies multiple 
airflow-control settings for a given function to account for varying 
installation scenarios, the highest airflow-control setting specified 
for the given function shall be used for the DOE test procedure.
     External static pressure means the difference between 
static pressures measured in the outlet duct and return air opening (or 
return air duct when used for testing) of the product in which the 
furnace fan is integrated.
     Furnace fan is an electrically-powered device used in a 
consumer product for the purpose of circulating air through ductwork.
     Modular blower means a product which only uses single-
phase electric current, and which:
    (a) Is designed to be the principal air circulation source for the 
living space of a residence;
    (b) Is not contained within the same cabinet as a furnace or 
central air conditioner; and
    (c) Is designed to be paired with HVAC products that have a heat 
input rate of less than 225,000 Btu per hour and/or cooling capacity 
less than 65,000 Btu per hour.
     Off mode means the condition in which the product in which 
the furnace fan is integrated is either not connected to the power 
source or connected to the power source but not energized.
     Standby mode means the condition in which the product in 
which the furnace fan is integrated is connected to the power source 
and the furnace fan is not circulating air.

D. Sampling Plans

    DOE provides sampling plans for all covered products. The purpose 
of a sampling plan is to provide statistically valid representations of 
energy consumption or energy efficiency for each covered product by 
capturing the variability inherent in the manufacturing and testing 
process. These sampling plans apply to all aspects of the EPCA program 
for consumer products, including public representations, labeling, and 
compliance with energy conservation standards. 10 CFR 429.11. In the 
NOPR, DOE proposed that the existing sampling plans used for furnaces 
be adopted and applied to measures of energy consumption for furnace 
fans. 77 FR at 28691 (May 15, 2012).
    AHRI and manufacturers commented that the 97.5 percent confidence 
limit required by the furnace sampling plan is too stringent. See 10 
CFR 429.18(a). Morrison and Allied Air commented on the difficulty of 
obtaining accurate, precise airflow measurements. According to 
Morrison, the uncertainty allowable per AMCA 210-07 is much greater 
than what is permissible in the furnaces sampling plan. (Morrison, 
Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 219; Allied Air, Public Meeting 
Transcript, No. 23 at p. 218.) Unico stated that it would have a 
problem with meeting anything close to 97.5 percent confidence. (Unico, 
Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 224.) AHRI stated that the 
confidence limits used for the AFUE measurement are inappropriate for 
the proposed electrical measurements. (AHRI, Public Meeting Transcript, 
No. 23 at p. 226.) Ingersoll Rand stated that the 97.5 percent 
confidence limit is not going to work and would require at least three 
sample units for every model to meet the requirement. (Ingersoll Rand, 
Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 230.) Carrier explained that 
the components of the furnace fan (i.e. electric motors, blower wheels 
and blower housings) are more analogous to an air conditioner or 
refrigerator than to the combustion process of a fuel-fired furnace. 
According to Carrier, AFUE does not consider the electrical efficiency 
of the furnace fan components. Carrier recommends the certification and 
enforcement level for furnaces fans to be 90%, which is consistent with 
the confidence limit for CAC. (Carrier, No. 10 at p. 4.) Allied Air, 
Goodman, Rheem, Ingersoll Rand, Lennox, and Morrison agreed that a 
sampling plan requiring a 90 percent confidence limit would be more 
appropriate. (Allied Air, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 225; 
Goodman, No. 17 at p. 6; Rheem, No. 25 at p. 11; Ingersoll Rand, No. 14 
at p. 2; Lennox, No. 12 at p. 5; Morrison, No. 21 at p. 8.)
    Efficiency advocates also support a less stringent confidence 
interval. Adjuvant commented that it strives for a 90 percent 
confidence interval in its work with HVAC products, which Adjuvant 
finds to be an appropriate level. Adjuvant added that it rarely uses 95 
percent and would not push for anything higher than 90. (Adjuvant, 
Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 at p. 229.) NPCC and NEEA commented 
that a 97.5 percent confidence limit is unrealistically stringent and 
might cause enforcement testing issues that are not helpful in 
certifying efficiency levels. NPCC and NEEA added that air flow and 
external static pressure measurements are prone to larger error bands 
than measurements such as power levels or temperatures, and are likely 
to cause real problems for manufacturers trying to certify to the 97.5 
percent confidence limit. NPCC and NEEA recommended using the same 
confidence limits as those used for heat pump and air conditioning 
systems, which are subject to some of the same measurement error bands 
as air handlers. (NPCC/NEEA, No. 22 at p. 7.) AHRI stated that 
confidence limits historically have been set without supporting data 
and suggested that DOE do a rigorous analysis to determine an 
appropriate confidence limit. (AHRI, Public Meeting Transcript, No. 23 
at p. 225.)
    DOE agrees with interested parties that the furnace fan electrical 
input power measurements and external static pressure measurements that 
would be required by the test procedure proposed herein are different 
and inherently more variable than the measurements required for AFUE. 
DOE proposes to adopt a sampling plan that requires any represented 
value of FER to be greater or equal to the mean of the sample or the 
upper 90 percent (one-tailed) confidence limit divided by 1.05, as 
specified in the sampling plan for CAC/HP products. 10 CFR 429.16 DOE 
will continue to analyze the available test data to evaluate the 
proposed sampling plan parameters. DOE requests comments, including 
detailed data, regarding test result variance that it can use to assess 
the appropriateness of the sampling plan proposed herein. (See

[[Page 19619]]

Issue 12 under ``Issues on Which DOE Seeks Comment'' in section V.B of 
this SNOPR.)

E. Standby Mode and Off Mode Energy Consumption

    EPCA, as amended by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 
2007, Public Law 110-140 (EISA), requires that any final rule for a new 
or amended energy conservation standard adopted after July 1, 2010, 
must address standby mode and off mode energy use pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 
6295(o). (42 U.S.C. 6295(gg)(3)) Thus, the statute implicitly directs 
DOE, when developing test procedures to support new energy conservation 
standards, to account for standby mode and off mode energy consumption. 
EISA also requires that such energy consumption be integrated into the 
overall energy efficiency, energy consumption, or other energy 
descriptor, unless the current test procedure already accounts for 
standby mode and off mode energy use. If an integrated test procedure 
is technically infeasible, DOE must prescribe a separate standby mode 
and off mode test procedure for the covered product, if technically 
feasible. (42 U.S.C. 6295(gg)(2)(A)) Accordingly, DOE must address the 
standby mode and off mode energy use of furnace fans in this test 
procedure. However, DOE has already fully incorporated standby mode and 
off mode energy use in the test procedures (or proposed test 
procedures) for all of the products to which this test procedure 
rulemaking would be applicable.
    Table III.1 summarizes the test procedure rulemaking vehicles 
through which DOE addresses standby mode and off mode energy 
consumption for the various types of products which circulate air 
through ductwork.

 Table III.1--Rulemaking Activities Addressing Furnace Fan Standby Mode
                     and Off Mode Energy Consumption
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                        DOE rulemaking
          HVAC products                 Status             activity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 Gas Furnaces...........  Addressed in         Codified
 Oil-fired Furnaces.....   separate            Furnaces Test
 Electric Furnaces......   rulemaking.         Procedure October
                                                       20, 2010 final
                                                       rule (75 FR
                                                       64621) (10 CFR
                                                       part 430, subpart
                                                       B, appendix N,
                                                       section 8.0).
                                                       September
                                                       13, 2011 NOPR (76
                                                       FR 56339).
 Modular Blowers........  Addressed in         June 2,
 Weatherized Gas Furnace   separate            2010 NOPR (75 FR
                                   rulemaking.         31224).
                                                       April 1,
                                                       2011 SNOPR (76 FR
                                                       18105).
                                                       October
                                                       24, 2011 SNOPR
                                                       (76 FR 65616).
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    DOE prescribed the measurement of standby mode and off mode energy 
use for non-weatherized gas furnaces, oil-fired furnaces, and electric 
furnaces in the furnace test procedure, 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, 
appendix N, section 8.0. DOE proposed coverage of standby mode and off 
mode energy use for modular blowers and weatherized gas furnaces in a 
June 2, 2010 NOPR. 75 FR 31224. In a September 13, 2011 NOPR, DOE 
proposed amendments to its furnace test procedure related to standby 
mode and off mode. 76 FR 56339. DOE subsequently published one SNOPR on 
April 1, 2011, and another on October 24, 2011, regarding standby mode 
and off mode test procedures for these products. 76 FR 18105; 76 FR 
65616. DOE published a furnaces standby and off mode test procedure 
final rule on December 31, 2012. 77 FR 76831. Furnace fans are 
integrated in the electrical systems of the HVAC products in which they 
are used and controlled by the main control board. Therefore, the 
standby mode and off mode energy use associated with these furnace fans 
would be measured by the established or proposed test procedures 
associated with these products. There is no need for DOE to adopt 
additional test procedure provisions for these modes in this 
rulemaking.

F. Reference System Product Types

    In the NOPR, DOE identified four installation types with unique 
reference system ESP considerations:
     Heating-only units;
     Units with an internal evaporator coil;
     Units designed to be paired with an evaporator coil; and
     Manufactured home units.
    DOE anticipated that some HVAC products may not be designed to 
provide cooling. Specifically, DOE identified hydronic air handler 
models that are not designed to be paired with an evaporator coil 
(either factory-installed or separate). DOE proposed to specify a lower 
reference system ESP for these products because they do not experience 
the additional pressure drop of circulating air past an evaporator 
coil.
    Ingersoll Rand commented that it was not aware of any product that 
would be categorized as a heating-only product. Ingersoll Rand added 
that including this installation type could provide manufacturers with 
a means of gaming the test procedure by modifying its furnaces to 
eliminate factory-installed cooling capabilities, which would allow 
such furnaces to be tested at the lower ESP specified for heating-only 
units. For these reasons, Ingersoll Rand recommended that DOE eliminate 
the heating-only designation. (Ingersoll Rand, Public Meeting 
Transcript, No. 23 at p. 50.) NPCC and NEEA also suggested that DOE 
eliminate the heating-only installation type. (NPCC/NEEA, No. 22 at p. 
6)
    DOE agrees with interested parties that the heating-only 
installation type should be eliminated from consideration. The scope of 
applicability of the test procedure proposed herein does not include 
hydronic air handlers as discussed in section III.A. Consequently, DOE 
proposes to eliminate the heating-only product designation as a result.

IV. Procedural Issues and Regulatory Review

A. Review Under Executive Order 12866

    The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has determined that test 
procedure rulemakings do not constitute ``significant regulatory 
actions'' under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866, ``Regulatory 
Planning and Review,'' 58 FR 51735 (Oct. 4, 1993). Accordingly, this 
action was not subject to review under the Executive Order by the 
Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) at OMB.

B. Review Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) requires 
preparation of an initial regulatory flexibility analysis (IFRA) for 
any rule that by law must be proposed for public comment and a final 
regulatory flexibility analysis

[[Page 19620]]

(FRFA) for any such rule that an agency adopts as a final rule, unless 
the agency certifies that the rule, if promulgated, would not have a 
significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. 
As required by Executive Order 13272, ``Proper Consideration of Small 
Entities in Agency Rulemaking,'' 67 FR 53461 (August 16, 2002), DOE 
published procedures and policies on February 19, 2003, to ensure that 
the potential impacts of its rules on small entities are properly 
considered during the DOE rulemaking process, 68 FR 7990. DOE's 
procedures and policies may be viewed on the Office of the General 
Counsel's Web site (http://energy.gov/gc/office-general-counsel).
    DOE reviewed today's proposed rule under the provisions of the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act and the procedures and policies published on 
February 19, 2003, 68 FR 7990. DOE has tentatively concluded that the 
proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities under the provisions of the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act. The factual basis for this certification is 
as follows:
    The Small Business Administration (SBA) considers an entity to be a 
small business if, together with its affiliates, it employs fewer than 
a threshold number of workers as specified in 13 CFR part 121. The 
threshold values set forth in these regulations use size standards and 
codes established by the North American Industry Classification System 
(NAICS) that are available at: http://www.sba.gov/sites/default/files/Size_Standards_Table.pdf. The threshold number for NAICS 
classification for 333415, which applies to Air-Conditioning and Warm 
Air Heating Equipment and Commercial and Industrial Refrigeration 
Equipment Manufacturing (this includes furnace fan manufacturers) is 
750 employees.\8\ DOE reviewed AHRI's Directory of Certified Product 
Performance for Residential Furnaces and Boilers (2009),\9\ the ENERGY 
STAR Product Databases for Gas and Oil Furnaces (May 15, 2009),\10\ the 
California Energy Commission's Appliance Database for Residential 
Furnaces and Boilers,\11\ and the Consortium for Energy Efficiency's 
Qualifying Furnace and Boiler List (April 2, 2009).\12\ From this 
review, DOE identified 14 small businesses within the furnace fan 
industry. DOE does not believe the test procedure amendments described 
in this proposed rule would represent a substantial burden to any 
manufacturer, including small manufacturers, as explained below. DOE 
requests comments on its characterization of the furnace fan industry 
in terms of the number of and impacts on small businesses.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \8\ U.S. Small Business Administration, Table of Small Business 
Size Standards (August 22, 2008) (Available at: http://www.sba.gov/sites/default/files/Size_Standards_Table.pdf).
    \9\ The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute, 
Directory of Certified Product Performance (June 2009) (Available 
at: http://www.ahridirectory.org/ahridirectory/pages/home.aspx).
    \10\ The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. 
Department of Energy, ENERGY STAR Furnaces--Product Databases for 
Gas and Oil Furnaces (May 15, 2009) (Available at: http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=furnaces.pr_furnaces).
    \11\ The California Energy Commission, Appliance Database for 
Residential Furnaces and Boilers (2009) (Available at: http://www.appliances.energy.ca.gov/QuickSearch.aspxh).
    \12\ Consortium of Energy Efficiency, Qualifying Furnace and 
Boiler List (April 2, 2009) (Available at: http://www.ceedirectory.org/ceedirectory/pages/cee/ceeDirectoryInfo.aspx).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    This proposed rule would establish test procedures that would be 
used for representations of energy use and to test compliance with new 
energy conservation standards, which are being developed in a 
concurrent rulemaking, for the products that are the subject of this 
rulemaking. This notice proposes new test procedures for active mode 
testing for all such products. The proposed rule would require a 
modified version of the testing methods prescribed in a public 
submission from AHRI (the trade organization that represents 
manufacturers of furnace fans). The AHRI proposal recommends test 
methods that are purposely aligned with the current DOE test procedure 
for furnaces in order to minimize test burden. (AHRI, No. 26); Appendix 
N of subpart B of 10 CFR part 430. As discussed above, this would not 
represent a substantial burden to any furnace fan manufacturer, small 
or large. According to AHRI, its proposed method would result in an 80 
to 90 percent reduction in test burden compared to the test procedure 
proposed by DOE in the NOPR. AHRI attributed this reduction primarily 
to manufacturers not having to acquire or use any test equipment beyond 
the equipment that is already used to conduct the test method specified 
in the DOE furnace test procedure (i.e. the AFUE test setup). (AHRI, 
No. 16 at p. 3.) Mortex, a small manufacturer, stated that measuring 
airflow and electrical power input at a few more airflow-control 
settings as a part of the existing AFUE test procedure should not 
require any capital outlay, unlike the method proposed by DOE in the 
NOPR. (Mortex, No. 18 at p. 2.) DOE's proposed modifications to AHRI's 
approach would require minimal, low-cost equipment beyond what is 
currently used to perform the AFUE test. This additional equipment 
would include additional thermocouples and potentially an air mixer. 
Manufacturers commented that this equipment is already used by furnace 
fan manufacturers because it is required by either ASHRAE 103 or ASHRAE 
37, which are currently used to test the HVAC products considered in 
this rulemaking. Therefore, DOE expects little or no additional cost as 
the result of the new test procedure.
    DOE also expects that the time and cost to conduct testing 
according to the proposed test procedure will not be significantly 
burdensome. During discussions with manufacturers, DOE received 
feedback that the time to test a single unit according to the AHRI 
method would be 30 to 60 percent less relative to using the procedure 
DOE proposed in the NOPR. Goodman performed tests according to both 
DOE's NOPR test procedure proposal and AHRI's suggested method and 
found that testing time is reduced by almost 60 percent using AHRI's 
method. (Goodman, No. 17 at p. 3.) Rheem also conducted tests according 
to both procedures and stated that the time to test a single-stage 
furnace was reduced from 4 hours to 45 minutes by using the AHRI 
method. (Rheem, No. 25 at p. 4.) Assuming that the labor rate for a 
given manufacturer would be the same regardless of test method, DOE 
expects that the cost to conduct a test would also be reduced by 30 to 
60 percent. DOE estimated that conducting a test according to its NOPR 
proposed test procedure would cost a small manufacturer $2.30 per unit 
shipped. This estimate is largely based on DOE's experience with third-
party test lab labor rates for fan testing, 77 FR at 28691 (May 15, 
2012). A 30 percent reduction would yield a conservative cost estimate 
of $1.61 per unit shipped to conduct a test according to AHRI's method. 
DOE does not expect that its proposed modifications to the AHRI method 
would result in additional costs to conduct a test. DOE finds that the 
selling price for HVAC products that incorporate furnace fans ranges 
from approximately $400 to $4,000. Therefore, the added cost of testing 
per DOE's revised proposed test procedure would be less than one 
percent of the manufacturer selling price (and lower than 0.1 percent 
in some cases).
    For these reasons, DOE certifies that the proposed rule, if 
adopted, would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial 
number of small entities. Accordingly, DOE has not prepared a

[[Page 19621]]

regulatory flexibility analysis for this rulemaking. DOE will provide 
its certification and supporting statement of factual basis to the 
Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the SBA for review under 5 U.S.C. 605(b).

C. Review Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

    There is currently no information collection requirement related to 
the test procedure for furnace fans. In the event that DOE proposes an 
energy conservation standard with which manufacturers must demonstrate 
compliance, or otherwise proposes to require the collection of 
information derived from the testing of furnace fans according to this 
test procedure, DOE will seek OMB approval of such information 
collection requirement.
    Manufacturers of covered products must certify to DOE that their 
products comply with any applicable energy conservation standard, 10 
CFR 429.12. In certifying compliance, manufacturers must test their 
products according to the applicable DOE test procedure, including any 
amendments adopted for that test procedure. See 10 CFR 429.13.
    DOE established regulations for the certification and recordkeeping 
requirements for certain covered consumer products and commercial 
equipment, 76 FR 12422 (March 7, 2011). The collection-of-information 
requirement for the certification and recordkeeping was subject to 
review and approval by OMB under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). 
This requirement was approved by OMB under OMB Control Number 1910-
1400. Public reporting burden for the certification was estimated to 
average 20 hours per response, including the time for reviewing 
instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and 
maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the 
collection of information.
    As stated above, in the event DOE proposes an energy conservation 
standard for furnace fans with which manufacturers must demonstrate 
compliance, DOE will seek OMB approval of the associated information 
collection requirement. DOE will seek approval either through a 
proposed amendment to the information collection requirement approved 
under OMB control number 1910-1400 or as a separate proposed 
information collection requirement.
    Notwithstanding any other provision of the law, no person is 
required to respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty 
for failure to comply with, a collection of information subject to the 
requirements of the PRA, unless that collection of information displays 
a currently valid OMB Control Number.

D. Review Under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969

    In this notice of proposed rulemaking, DOE proposes a new test 
procedure for furnace fans. DOE has determined that this rule falls 
into a class of actions that are categorically excluded from review 
under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et 
seq.) and DOE's implementing regulations at 10 CFR part 1021. 
Specifically, this rule proposes a test procedure without affecting the 
amount, quality or distribution of energy usage, and, therefore, will 
not result in any environmental impacts. Thus, this rulemaking is 
covered by Categorical Exclusion A5 under 10 CFR part 1021, subpart D, 
which applies to any rulemaking that does not result in any 
environmental impacts. Accordingly, neither an environmental assessment 
nor an environmental impact statement is required.

E. Review Under Executive Order 13132

    Executive Order 13132, ``Federalism,'' 64 FR 43255 (August 10, 
1999), imposes certain requirements on Federal agencies formulating and 
implementing policies or regulations that preempt State law or that 
have Federalism implications. The Executive Order requires agencies to 
examine the constitutional and statutory authority supporting any 
action that would limit the policymaking discretion of the States and 
to carefully assess the necessity for such actions. The Executive Order 
also requires agencies to have an accountable process to ensure 
meaningful and timely input by State and local officials in the 
development of regulatory policies that have Federalism implications. 
On March 14, 2000, DOE published a statement of policy describing the 
intergovernmental consultation process it will follow in the 
development of such regulations, 65 FR 13735. DOE has examined this 
proposed rule and has tentatively determined that it would not have a 
substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between 
the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power 
and responsibilities among the various levels of government. EPCA 
governs and prescribes Federal preemption of State regulations as to 
energy conservation for the products that are the subject of today's 
proposed rule. States can petition DOE for exemption from such 
preemption to the extent, and based on criteria, set forth in EPCA (42 
U.S.C. 6297(d)). No further action is required by Executive Order 
13132.

F. Review Under Executive Order 12988

    Regarding the review of existing regulations and the promulgation 
of new regulations, section 3(a) of Executive Order 12988, ``Civil 
Justice Reform,'' 61 FR 4729 (Feb. 7, 1996), imposes on Federal 
agencies the general duty to adhere to the following requirements: (1) 
Eliminate drafting errors and ambiguity; (2) write regulations to 
minimize litigation; (3) provide a clear legal standard for affected 
conduct rather than a general standard; and (4) promote simplification 
and burden reduction. With regard to the review required by section 
3(a), section 3(b) of Executive Order 12988 specifically requires that 
Executive agencies make every reasonable effort to ensure that the 
regulation: (1) clearly specifies the preemptive effect, if any; (2) 
clearly specifies any effect on existing Federal law or regulation; (3) 
provides a clear legal standard for affected conduct while promoting 
simplification and burden reduction; (4) specifies the retroactive 
effect, if any; (5) adequately defines key terms; and (6) addresses 
other important issues affecting clarity and general draftsmanship 
under any guidelines issued by the Attorney General. Section 3(c) of 
Executive Order 12988 requires Executive agencies to review regulations 
in light of applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 3(b) to determine 
whether they are met or it is unreasonable to meet one or more of them. 
DOE has completed the required review and determined that, to the 
extent permitted by law, the proposed rule meets the relevant standards 
of Executive Order 12988.

G. Review Under the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA) 
requires each Federal agency to assess the effects of Federal 
regulatory actions on State, local, and Tribal governments and the 
private sector. (Pub. L. 104-4, sec. 201 (codified at 2 U.S.C. 1531)) 
For a proposed regulatory action likely to result in a rule that may 
cause the expenditure by State, local, and Tribal governments, in the 
aggregate, or by the private sector of $100 million or more in any one 
year (adjusted annually for inflation), section 202 of UMRA requires a 
Federal agency to publish a written statement that estimates the 
resulting costs, benefits, and other effects on the national economy. 
(2 U.S.C. 1532(a), (b)) The UMRA also requires a Federal agency to 
develop an effective process

[[Page 19622]]

to permit timely input by elected officers of State, local, and Tribal 
governments on a ``significant intergovernmental mandate,'' and 
requires an agency plan for giving notice and opportunity for timely 
input to potentially affected small governments before establishing any 
requirements that might significantly or uniquely affect small 
governments. On March 18, 1997, DOE published a statement of policy on 
its process for intergovernmental consultation under UMRA. 62 FR 12820. 
DOE's policy statement is also available at http://energy.gov/gc/office-general-counsel. DOE examined today's proposed rule according to 
UMRA and its statement of policy and determined that the rule contains 
neither an intergovernmental mandate, nor a mandate that may result in 
the expenditure by State, local, and Tribal governments, in the 
aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 million or more in any 
year. Accordingly, no assessment or analysis is required under UMRA.

H. Review Under the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, 
1999

    Section 654 of the Treasury and General Government Appropriations 
Act, 1999 (Pub. L. 105-277) requires Federal agencies to issue a Family 
Policymaking Assessment for any rule that may affect family well-being. 
This rule would not have any impact on the autonomy or integrity of the 
family as an institution. Accordingly, DOE has concluded that it is not 
necessary to prepare a Family Policymaking Assessment.

I. Review Under Executive Order 12630

    DOE has determined, under Executive Order 12630, ``Governmental 
Actions and Interference with Constitutionally Protected Property 
Rights,'' 53 FR 8859 (March 18, 1988), that this regulation would not 
result in any takings that might require compensation under the Fifth 
Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

J. Review Under Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, 
2001

    Section 515 of the Treasury and General Government Appropriations 
Act, 2001 (44 U.S.C. 3516 note) provides for Federal agencies to review 
most disseminations of information to the public under guidelines 
established by each agency pursuant to general guidelines issued by 
OMB. OMB's guidelines were published at 67 FR 8452 (Feb. 22, 2002), and 
DOE's guidelines were published at 67 FR 62446 (Oct. 7, 2002). DOE has 
reviewed today's proposed rule under the OMB and DOE guidelines and has 
concluded that it is consistent with applicable policies in those 
guidelines.

K. Review Under Executive Order 13211

    Executive Order 13211, ``Actions Concerning Regulations That 
Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use,'' 66 FR 28355 
(May 22, 2001), requires Federal agencies to prepare and submit to OIRA 
at OMB, a Statement of Energy Effects for any significant energy 
action. A ``significant energy action'' is defined as any action by an 
agency that promulgates or is expected to lead to promulgation of a 
final rule, and that: (1) Is a significant regulatory action under 
Executive Order 12866, or any successor order; and (2) is likely to 
have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use 
of energy; or (3) is designated by the Administrator of OIRA as a 
significant energy action. For any proposed significant energy action, 
the agency must provide a detailed statement of any adverse effects on 
energy supply, distribution, or use should the proposal be implemented, 
and of reasonable alternatives to the action and their expected 
benefits on energy supply, distribution, and use.
    DOE has tentatively concluded that today's regulatory action, which 
would prescribe the test procedure for measuring the energy efficiency 
of furnace fans, is not a significant energy action because the 
proposed test procedure is not a significant regulatory action under 
Executive Order 12866 and is not likely to have a significant adverse 
effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy, nor has it been 
designated as a significant energy action by the Administrator of OIRA. 
Accordingly, DOE has not prepared a Statement of Energy Effects on the 
proposed rule.

L. Review Under Section 32 of the Federal Energy Administration Act of 
1974

    Under section 301 of the Department of Energy Organization Act 
(Pub. L. 95-91), DOE must comply with all laws applicable to the former 
Federal Energy Administration, including section 32 of the Federal 
Energy Administration Act of 1974 (Pub. L. 93-275), as amended by the 
Federal Energy Administration Authorization Act of 1977 (Pub. L. 95-
70). (15 U.S.C. 788) Section 32 provides in relevant part that, where a 
proposed rule authorizes or requires use of commercial standards, the 
notice of proposed rulemaking must inform the public of the use and 
background of such standards. In addition, section 32(c) requires DOE 
to consult with the Attorney General and the Chairman of the Federal 
Trade Commission (FTC) concerning the impact of the commercial or 
industry standards on competition.
    The proposed rule incorporates testing methods contained in the DOE 
test procedure for furnaces codified in Appendix N or subpart B of part 
430 of the CFR (which incorporates by reference ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 
103, ``Method of Testing for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency of 
Residential Central Furnaces and Boilers,'' and ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 
37-2005, ``Methods of Testing for Rating Electrically Driven Unitary 
Air-Conditioning and Heat Pump Equipment.'' While today's proposed test 
procedure is not exclusively based on these standards, some components 
of the DOE test procedure would adopt definitions, test setup, 
measurement techniques, and additional calculations from them without 
any change. The Department has evaluated these standards and is unable 
to conclude whether they fully comply with the requirements of section 
32(b) of the FEAA (i.e., that they were developed in a manner that 
fully provides for public participation, comment, and review). DOE will 
consult with the Attorney General and the Chairman of the FTC 
concerning the impact of these test procedures on competition prior to 
prescribing a final rule.

V. Public Participation

A. Submission of Comments

    DOE will accept comments, data, and information regarding this 
proposed rule before or after the public meeting, but no later than the 
date provided in the DATES section at the beginning of this proposed 
rule. Interested parties may submit comments using any of the methods 
described in the ADDRESSES section at the beginning of this SNOPR.
    Submitting comments via www.regulations.gov. The 
www.regulations.gov Web page requires you to provide your name and 
contact information. Your contact information will be viewable to DOE 
Building Technologies staff only. Your contact information will not be 
publicly viewable except for your first and last names, organization 
name (if any), and submitter representative name (if any). If your 
comment is not processed properly because of technical difficulties, 
DOE will use this information to contact you. If DOE cannot read your 
comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact

[[Page 19623]]

you for clarification, DOE may not be able to consider your comment.
    However, your contact information will be publicly viewable if you 
include it in the comment itself or in any documents attached to your 
comment. Any information that you do not want to be publicly viewable 
should not be included in your comment, nor in any document attached to 
your comment. Otherwise, persons viewing comments will see only first 
and last names, organization names, correspondence containing comments, 
and any documents submitted with the comments.
    Do not submit to www.regulations.gov information for which 
disclosure is restricted by statute, such as trade secrets and 
commercial or financial information (hereinafter referred to as 
Confidential Business Information (CBI)). Comments submitted through 
www.regulations.gov cannot be claimed as CBI. Comments received through 
the Web site will waive any CBI claims for the information submitted. 
For information on submitting CBI, see the Confidential Business 
Information section.
    DOE processes submissions made through www.regulations.gov before 
posting. Normally, comments will be posted within a few days of being 
submitted. However, if large volumes of comments are being processed 
simultaneously, your comment may not be viewable for up to several 
weeks. Please keep the comment tracking number that www.regulations.gov 
provides after you have successfully uploaded your comment.
    Submitting comments via email, hand delivery, or mail. Comments and 
documents submitted via email, hand delivery, or mail also will be 
posted to www.regulations.gov. If you do not want your personal contact 
information to be publicly viewable, do not include it in your comment 
or any accompanying documents. Instead, provide your contact 
information in a cover letter. Include your first and last names, email 
address, telephone number, and optional mailing address. The cover 
letter will not be publicly viewable as long as it does not include any 
comments.
    Include contact information each time you submit comments, data, 
documents, and other information to DOE. If you submit via mail or hand 
delivery/courier, please provide all items on a compact disk (CD), if 
feasible, in which case it is not necessary to submit printed copies. 
No telefacsimiles (faxes) will be accepted.
    Comments, data, and other information submitted to DOE 
electronically should be provided in PDF (preferred), Microsoft Word or 
Excel, WordPerfect, or text (ASCII) file format. Provide documents that 
are not secured, written in English, and are free of any defects or 
viruses. Documents should not contain special characters or any form of 
encryption and, if possible, they should carry the electronic signature 
of the author.
    Campaign form letters. Please submit campaign form letters by the 
originating organization in batches of between 50 to 500 form letters 
per PDF or as one form letter with a list of supporters' names compiled 
into one or more PDFs. This reduces comment processing and posting 
time.
    Confidential Business Information. Pursuant to 10 CFR 1004.11, any 
person submitting information that he or she believes to be 
confidential and exempt by law from public disclosure should submit via 
email, postal mail, or hand delivery/courier two well-marked copies: 
one copy of the document marked confidential including all the 
information believed to be confidential, and one copy of the document 
marked non-confidential with the information believed to be 
confidential deleted. Submit these documents via email or on a CD, if 
feasible. DOE will make its own determination about the confidential 
status of the information and treat it according to its determination.
    Factors of interest to DOE when evaluating requests to treat 
submitted information as confidential include: (1) A description of the 
items; (2) whether and why such items are customarily treated as 
confidential within the industry; (3) whether the information is 
generally known by or available from other sources; (4) whether the 
information has previously been made available to others without 
obligation concerning its confidentiality; (5) an explanation of the 
competitive injury to the submitting person which would result from 
public disclosure; (6) when such information might lose its 
confidential character due to the passage of time; and (7) why 
disclosure of the information would be contrary to the public interest.
    It is DOE's policy that all comments may be included in the public 
docket, without change and as received, including any personal 
information provided in the comments (except information deemed to be 
exempt from public disclosure).

B. Issues on Which DOE Seeks Comment

    Although DOE welcomes comments on any aspect of this proposal, DOE 
is particularly interested in receiving comments and views of 
interested parties concerning the following issues:
1. Airflow Equation
    DOE is concerned that using AFUE and QIN, as defined in 
AHRI's proposal, would not result in accurate representations of 
airflow at the proposed operating conditions because neither parameter 
is measured at the proposed operating conditions. DOE proposes to use 
steady state combustion efficiency and fuel energy input measured at 
the proposed operating conditions instead of AFUE and QIN to 
address this discrepancy and minimize the potential resulting 
inaccuracies in calculated airflow. DOE recognizes that replacing AFUE 
with steady state combustion efficiency would also require that jacket 
losses and the usable heat generated by the motor also be included in 
the calculation. Section III.B.1 includes a detailed discussion of this 
issue and DOE's proposed modified version of the airflow calculation 
equation. DOE requests comments on these modifications to the equation 
proposed by AHRI to calculate airflow.
    DOE recognizes that the use of the 1.08 conversion factor assumes 
that the airflow has standard air properties (i.e. standard air density 
and specific heat). DOE anticipates that the properties of the airflow 
under test may deviate from these values at actual test conditions. 
Therefore, DOE also requests comment on whether the conversion factor 
should be adjusted by the barometric pressure at test conditions.
2. Using Temperature Rise in the Rated Heating Airflow-Control Setting 
To Calculate Maximum Airflow
    DOE proposes to modify the AHRI recommended method to specify that 
maximum airflow be calculated based on a temperature rise measurement 
taken while operating the furnace in the rated heating airflow-control 
setting and firing the burner at the heat input capacity associated 
with that airflow-control setting. DOE recognizes that, compared to 
AHRI's suggested method, more complex calculations are required to 
determine the airflow in the maximum airflow-control setting based on a 
temperature rise measurement in the heating airflow-control setting. 
Section III.B.1 includes a detailed discussion of DOE's reasoning, 
methodology, and equations for the modified approach to calculating 
airflow in the maximum airflow control setting. DOE requests comments 
on the proposed modified method for calculating airflow in the maximum 
airflow-control setting. DOE also requests comment on whether the

[[Page 19624]]

proposed adjustment to this calculation, which accounts for the 
elevated temperature in the ductwork, should be incorporated to achieve 
greater accuracy in determination of the maximum airflow rate. 
Specifically, DOE requests comments on how ESP, furnace fan electrical 
input power, and airflow measurements are impacted by temperature rise. 
DOE also seeks comment on how those relationships would impact the 
accuracy of the calculated value of QMax and, ultimately, FER.
3. Using the Maximum Heat Setting to Measure Temperature Rise
    DOE recognizes that a more accurate measurement of temperature rise 
could be made at higher throughput temperatures because the allowable 
error in temperature measurements would represent a lower percentage of 
the overall temperature rise. DOE requests comment on whether the 
maximum airflow should be calculated based on the temperature rise 
measured while operating the furnace fan in the maximum default heat 
airflow-control setting and at maximum heat input capacity to minimize 
temperature measurement error. Section III.B.1 includes a detailed 
discussion of this issue.
4. Elevation Impacts
    DOE is concerned that at higher elevations the temperature rise 
would be high due to reduced air mass flow, resulting in higher 
calculated airflow. DOE requests comments on the magnitude of potential 
elevation impacts on calculated airflow and FER values. DOE also 
requests comments on whether specifications, such as a maximum test 
elevation or elevation adjustment factors, should be used to avoid 
circumvention associated with conducting this test at high elevation.
5. Outlet Duct Restriction Specifications
    AHRI's suggested test method specifies that the reference system 
ESP be achieved by ``symmetrically restricting the outlet of the test 
duct.'' (AHRI, No. 26 at p. 19.) The AHRI test method does not provide 
details on the method or equipment to be used to meet this requirement. 
DOE is aware that independent test labs typically apply cardboard 
ducting or tape to the corners of the outlet until the desired ESP is 
achieved. DOE requests comments on whether more specific methods for 
restricting the outlet duct should be included and what these specific 
duct restriction requirements should be. Section III.B.2 includes a 
detailed discussion of this issue.
6. Optional Return Air Duct
    According to AHRI's suggested test method, use of an return air 
duct in the test setup is optional. (AHRI, No. 26 at p. 20.) DOE 
proposes to also allow for the optional use of a return air duct; 
however, DOE is concerned that ESP may differ when measured with a 
return air duct compared to when measured without a return air duct. 
DOE requests comments on the relative ESP measurements and FER values 
that result when not using an air return duct compared to when an air 
return duct is used, and whether the test procedure should explicitly 
require use of a return air duct. Section III.B.2 includes a detailed 
discussion of this issue.
7. ASHRAE 37-2005 External Static Pressure Measurement Provisions
    AHRI's suggested test method specifies that ESP measurements be 
made as close as possible to the air supply and return openings of the 
furnace and in all cases, between the furnace openings and any 
restrictions or elbows in the test plenums or ducts. (AHRI, No. 26 at 
p. 20.) DOE agrees with these specifications, but proposes to 
incorporate by reference the ASHRAE 37 provisions for measuring ESP 
(sections 6.4 and 6.5), which are consistent with AHRI's suggested 
specifications but are more detailed. DOE anticipates that these more 
detailed specifications would minimize variations in test setups and, 
in turn, improve repeatability. DOE requests comments on its proposed 
provisions for measuring ESP, which are adopted from ASHRAE 37-2005. 
Section III.B.2 includes details of DOE's proposal for measuring 
external static pressure.
Temperature Measurement Accuracy Requirement
    AHRI's recommended method adopts ASHRAE 103-1993 provisions that 
specify that temperature measurements shall have an error no greater 
than 2[emsp14][deg]F. DOE proposes to specify that 
temperature measurements have an error no greater than 0.5[emsp14][deg]F to minimize error in the resulting FER values. 
DOE requests comment on whether 0.5[emsp14][deg]F is 
reasonably achievable. Section III.B.3 includes a more detailed 
discussion of this issue.
9. Minimum Temperature Rise
    AHRI's method does not include a minimum temperature rise 
requirement. DOE is concerned that the allowable error in temperature 
measurements coupled with a low temperature rise could result in 
inaccurate test results. For this reason, DOE also proposes to require 
a minimum temperature rise of 18[emsp14][deg]F, as specified in ASHRAE 
37-2005. DOE requests comments on whether a minimum temperature rise 
should be required, and if so, what an appropriate value for the 
minimum temperature rise would be. Section III.B.3 includes a detailed 
discussion of this issue.
10. Steady-State Stabilization Criteria
    AHRI's recommended method adopts the stabilization criteria of the 
DOE test procedure for residential furnaces. 10 CFR part 430, subpart 
B, appendix N, section 7.0 DOE is concerned that the temperature 
variations specified in the residential furnace stabilization criteria 
are not stringent enough to maximize accuracy and repeatability for 
evaluating furnace fan performance according to the proposed test 
procedure. In section III.B.3 DOE proposes modified stabilization 
criteria to address this concern.. DOE requests comments on whether the 
proposed stabilization criteria are reasonably achievable, and whether 
the stabilization criteria for the AFUE test would be sufficient to 
assure that the entire furnace has thermally stabilized to a point such 
that the measured air temperature rise would no longer significantly 
change.
11. Inlet and Outlet Airflow Temperature Gradients
    AHRI's approach does not include provisions to account for 
potential inlet or outlet airflow temperature gradients. DOE is 
concerned that temperature gradients are likely to be present, which 
would compromise the accuracy and repeatability of the temperature rise 
measurement results. DOE proposes to specify the use of a mixer, as 
depicted in Figure 10 of ASHRAE 37-2005, which references ANSI/ASHRAE 
Standard 41.1-1986 (RA 2001), to minimize outlet flow temperature 
gradients if the temperature difference between any two thermocouples 
of the outlet air temperature grid is greater than 1.5[emsp14][deg]F. 
DOE requests comments on the proposed requirements for use of an air 
mixer. DOE also requests comment on whether the static pressure drop of 
adding a mixer would prevent the test setup from achieving the ESP 
levels specified in the DOE test procedure for furnaces or the lower 
ESP levels specified in this notice for measuring fan performance in 
the lowest rated airflow setting. DOE also seeks comment on whether 
additional thermocouples are needed for the inlet. Section III.B.3 
includes a detailed discussion of this issue.

[[Page 19625]]

12. Sampling Plan Criteria
    DOE agrees with interested parties that the furnace fan electrical 
input power measurements and external static pressure measurements that 
would be required by the test procedure proposed herein are different 
and inherently more variable than the measurements required for AFUE. 
DOE proposes to adopt a sampling plan that requires any represented 
value of FER to be greater or equal to the mean of the sample or the 
upper 90 percent (one-tailed) confidence limit divided by 1.05, as 
specified in the sampling plan for CAC/HP products. 10 CFR 429.16 DOE 
requests comments that include detailed data regarding test result 
variance that it can use to assess the appropriateness of the sampling 
plan proposed herein.

VI. Approval of the Office of the Secretary

    The Secretary of Energy has approved publication of today's notice 
of proposed rulemaking.

List of Subjects

10 CFR Part 429

    Confidential business information, Energy conservation, Household 
appliances, Imports, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

10 CFR Part 430

    Administrative practice and procedure, Confidential business 
information, Energy conservation, Household appliances, Imports, 
Incorporation by reference, Intergovernmental relations, Small 
businesses.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on March 25, 2013.
Kathleen B. Hogan,
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency, Energy Efficiency and 
Renewable Energy .
    For the reasons stated in the preamble, DOE proposes to amend parts 
429 and 430 of chapter II, subchapter D, of Title 10 of the Code of 
Federal Regulations as set forth below:

PART 429--CERTIFICATION, COMPLIANCE, AND ENFORCEMENT FOR CONSUMER 
PRODUCTS AND COMMERCIAL AND INDUSTRIAL EQUIPMENT

0
1. The authority citation for part 429 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  42 U.S.C. 6291-6317.
0
2. Add Sec.  429.58 to read as follows:


Sec.  429.58  Furnace fans.

    (a) Sampling plan for selection of units for testing. (1) The 
requirements of Sec.  429.11 are applicable to furnace fans; and
    (2) For each basic model of heating, ventilation, and air-
conditioning (HVAC) product using a furnace fan, a sample of sufficient 
size shall be randomly selected and tested to ensure that any 
represented value of fan energy rating (FER), rounded to the nearest 
integer, shall be greater than or equal to the higher of:
    (i) The mean of the sample, where: 
    [GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.024
    
    And, x is the sample mean; n is the number of samples; and 
xi is the measured value for the ith sample; or,
    (ii) The upper 90 percent confidence limit (UCL) of the true mean 
divided by 1.05, where: 
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.025

    And X is the sample mean; s is the sample standard deviation; n is 
the number of samples; and t0.90 is the t statistic for a 
90% one-tailed confidence interval with n-1 degrees of freedom (from 
Appendix A of this subpart).
    (b) Certification reports. [Reserved]

PART 430--ENERGY CONSERVATION PROGRAM FOR CONSUMER PRODUCTS

0
3. The authority citation for part 430 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 6291-6309; 28 U.S.C. 2461 note.
0
4. Section 430.3 is amended by:
0
a. Removing, in paragraph (f)(3) ``appendix M to subpart B'' and adding 
in its place ``appendix M and appendix AA to subpart B'';
0
b. Removing, in paragraph (f)(4), ``Reaffirmed 2001'' and adding in its 
place ``Reaffirmed 2006''; and removing ``appendix E and appendix M to 
subpart B'' and adding in its place ``appendices E, M, and AA to 
subpart B'';
0
c. Redesignating paragraph (f)(10) as (f)(11); and
0
d. Adding paragraph (f)(10);
    The addition reads as follows:


Sec.  430.3  Materials incorporated by reference.

* * * * *
    (f) * * *
    (10) ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 103-2007, (``ASHRAE 103-2007''), Methods 
of Testing for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency of Residential 
Central Furnaces and Boilers, except for sections 7.2.2.5, 8.6.1.1, 
9.1.2.2, 9.5.1.1, 9.5.1.2.1, 9.5.1.2.2, 9.5.2.1, 9.7.1, 11.2.12, 
11.3.12, 11.4.12, 11.5.12 and appendices B and C, ASHRAE approved June 
27, 2007, ANSI approved March 25, 2008, IBR approved for appendix AA to 
subpart B.
* * * * *
0
5. Section 430.23 is amended by adding paragraph (cc) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  430.23  Test procedures for the measurement of energy and water 
consumption.

* * * * *
    (cc) Furnace Fans. The energy consumption of a single unit of 
furnace fan basic model expressed in watts per 1000 cubic feet per 
minute (cfm) to the nearest integer shall be calculated in accordance 
with appendix AA of this subpart.
0
6. Appendix AA to subpart B of part 430 is added to read as follows:

Appendix AA to Subpart B of Part 430--Uniform Test Method for Measuring 
the Energy Consumption of Furnace Fans

    Note:  Any representation made after September 30, 2013 for 
energy consumption of furnace fans must be based upon results 
generated under this test procedure. Upon the compliance date(s) of 
any energy conservation standard(s) for furnace fans, use of the 
applicable provisions of this test procedure to demonstrate 
compliance with the energy conservation standard will also be 
required.

    1. Scope. This appendix covers the test requirements used to 
measure the energy consumption of a furnace fan.
    2. Definitions. Definitions include the definitions as specified 
in section 3 of ASHRAE 103-2007 (incorporated by reference, see 
Sec.  430.3) and the following additional definitions, some of which 
supersede definitions found in ASHRAE 103-2007:
    2.1. Active mode means the condition in which the product in 
which the furnace fan is integrated is connected to a power source 
and circulating air through ductwork.
    2.2. Airflow-control settings are programmed or wired control 
system configurations that control a fan to achieve discrete, 
differing ranges of airflow--often designated for performing a 
specific function (e.g., cooling, heating, or constant 
circulation)--without manual adjustment other than interaction with 
a user-operable control such as a thermostat that meets the 
manufacturer specifications for installed-use. For the purposes of 
this appendix, manufacturer specifications for installed-use shall 
be found in the product literature shipped with the unit.
    2.3. ASHRAE 103-2007 means ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 103-2007, 
published in 2007 by ASHRAE, approved by the American National 
Standards Institute (ANSI) on March 25, 2008, and entitled ``Method 
of Testing for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency of Residential 
Central Furnaces and Boilers''. Only those sections of ASHRAE 103-
2007 (incorporated by reference; see

[[Page 19626]]

Sec.  430.3) specifically referenced in this test procedure are part 
of this test procedure. In cases where there is a conflict, the 
language of the test procedure in this appendix takes precedence 
over ASHRAE 103-2007.
    2.4. ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 41.1-1986 (RA 2006) means the test 
standard published in 1986, approved by ANSI on February 18, 1987, 
reaffirmed in 2006, and entitled ``Standard Method for Temperature 
Measurement''.
    2.5. ASHRAE Standard 37-2005 means the test standard published 
in 2005 by ASHRAE entitled ``Methods of Testing for Rating Unitary 
Air-Conditioning and Heat Pump Equipment''.
    2.6. Default airflow-control settings are the airflow-control 
settings specified for installed-use by the manufacturer. For the 
purposes of this appendix, manufacturer specifications for 
installed-use are those specifications provided for typical consumer 
installations in the product literature shipped with the product in 
which the furnace fan is installed. In instances where a 
manufacturer specifies multiple airflow-control settings for a given 
function to account for varying installation scenarios, the highest 
airflow-control setting specified for the given function shall be 
used for the procedures specified in this appendix.
    2.7. External static pressure (ESP) means the difference between 
static pressures measured in the outlet duct and return air opening 
(or return air duct when used for testing) of the product in which 
the furnace fan is integrated.
    2.8. Furnace fan is an electrically-powered device used in a 
consumer product for the purpose of circulating air through 
ductwork.
    2.9. Modular blower means a product which only uses single-phase 
electric current, and which:
    (a) Is designed to be the principal air circulation source for 
the living space of a residence;
    (b) Is not contained within the same cabinet as a furnace or 
central air conditioner; and
    (c) Is designed to be paired with HVAC products that have a heat 
input rate of less than 225,000 Btu per hour or cooling capacity 
less than 65,000 Btu per hour.
    2.10. Off mode means the condition in which the product in which 
the furnace fan is integrated is either not connected to the power 
source or connected to the power source but not energized.
    2.11. Seasonal off switch means a switch on the product in which 
the furnace fan is integrated that, when activated, results in a 
measurable change in energy consumption between the standby and off 
modes.
    2.12. Standby mode means the condition in which the product in 
which the furnace fan is integrated is connected to the power source 
and the furnace fan is not circulating air.
    2.13. Thermal stack damper means a type of stack damper that 
opens only during the direct conversion of thermal energy of the 
stack gases.
    3. Classifications. Classifications are as specified in section 
4 of ASHRAE 103-2007 (incorporated by reference, see Sec.  430.3).
    4. Requirements. Requirements are as specified in section 5 of 
ASHRAE 103-2007 (incorporated by reference, see Sec.  430.3). In 
addition, Fan Energy Rating (FER) of furnace fans shall be 
determined using test data and estimated national average operating 
hours pursuant to section 10.10 of this appendix.
    5. Instruments. Instruments must be as specified in section 6, 
except section 6.2, of ASHRAE 103-2007 (incorporated by reference, 
see Sec.  430.3); and as specified in section 5.1 of this appendix.
    5.1. Temperature. Temperature measuring instruments shall meet 
the provisions specified in section 5.1 of ASHRAE 37-2005 
(incorporated by reference, see Sec.  430.3) and shall be accurate 
to within 0.5 degree Fahrenheit.
    5.1.1. Outlet Air Temperature Thermocouple Grid. Outlet air 
temperature shall be measured as described in section 8.2.1.5.5 of 
ASHRAE 103-2007 (incorporated by reference, see Sec.  430.3) and 
illustrated in Figure 2 of ASHRAE 103-2007. If the temperature range 
of the nine individual measurements exceeds 1.5 [deg]F, an air mixer 
as described in section 6 of ASHRAE 41.1-1986 (RA 2006) 
(incorporated by reference, see Sec.  430.3) shall be used to reduce 
the temperature range to within 1.5 [deg]F. Thermocouples shall be 
placed downstream of pressure taps used for external static pressure 
measurement.
    6. Apparatus. The apparatus used in conjunction with the furnace 
during the testing shall be as specified in section 7 of ASHRAE 103-
2007 (incorporated by reference, see Sec.  430.3) except for section 
7.1, the second paragraph of section 7.2.2.2, section 7.2.2.5, and 
section 7.7, and as specified in sections 6.1, 6.2, 6.3, 6.4, 6.5 
and 6.6 of this appendix.
    6.1. General. The product in which the furnace fan is integrated 
shall be installed in the test room in accordance with the product 
manufacturer's written instructions that are shipped with the 
product unless required otherwise by a specific provision of this 
appendix. The apparatus described in this section is used in 
conjunction with the product in which the furnace fan is integrated. 
Each piece of the apparatus shall conform to material and 
construction specifications and the reference standard cited. Test 
rooms containing equipment shall have suitable facilities for 
providing the utilities necessary for performance of the test and be 
able to maintain conditions within the limits specified.
    6.2. Downflow furnaces. Install the internal section of vent 
pipe the same size as the flue collar for connecting the flue collar 
to the top of the unit, if not supplied by the manufacturer. Do not 
insulate the internal vent pipe during the jacket loss test (if 
conducted) described in section 8.6 of ASHRAE 103-2007 (incorporated 
by reference, see Sec.  430.3) or the steady-state test described in 
section 9.1 of ASHRAE 103-2007. Do not insulate the internal vent 
pipe before the cool-down and heat-up tests described in sections 
9.5 and 9.6, respectively, of ASHRAE 103-2007. If the vent pipe is 
surrounded by a metal jacket, do not insulate the metal jacket. 
Install a 5-ft test stack of the same cross sectional area or 
perimeter as the vent pipe above the top of the furnace. Tape or 
seal around the junction connecting the vent pipe and the 5-ft test 
stack. Insulate the 5-ft test stack with insulation having a minimum 
R-value of 7 and an outer layer of aluminum foil. (See Figure 3-E of 
ASHRAE 103-2007.)
    6.3. Modular Blowers. A modular blower shall be equipped with 
the electric heat resistance kit that is likely to have the largest 
volume of retail sales with that particular basic model of modular 
blower.
    6.4. Ducts and Plenums. An apparatus for measuring external 
static pressure as specified in sections 6.4 and 6.5 of ASHRAE 37-
2005 (incorporated by reference, see Sec.  430.3) shall be 
integrated in the plenum and test duct. External static pressure 
measuring instruments shall be placed between the furnace openings 
and any restrictions or elbows in the test plenums or ducts. For 
tests conducted using a return air duct, the external static 
pressure shall be directly measured as a differential pressure as 
depicted in Figure 8 of ASHRAE 37-2005 rather than determined by 
separately measuring inlet and outlet static pressure and 
subtracting the results. For tests conducted without a return air 
duct, the external static pressure shall be directly measured as the 
differential pressure between the duct static pressure and the 
ambient static pressure as depicted in Figure 7a of ASHRAE 37-2005.
    6.5. Air Filters. Air filters shall be removed.
    6.6. Electrical Measurement. Only electrical input power to the 
furnace fan shall be measured for the purposes of this appendix. 
Electrical input power to all other electricity-consuming components 
of the product in which the furnace fan is integrated shall not be 
included in the electrical input power measurements used in the FER 
calculation. If the procedures of this appendix are being conducted 
at the same time as another test that requires metering of 
components other than the furnace fan, the electrical input power to 
the furnace fan shall be sub-metered.
    7. Test Conditions. The testing conditions shall be as specified 
in section 8, except for section 8.6.1.1, of ASHRAE 103-2007 
(incorporated by reference, see Sec.  430.3); and as specified in 
section 7.1 of this appendix.
    7.1. Measurement of Jacket Surface Temperature. The jacket of 
the furnace or boiler shall be subdivided into 6-inch squares when 
practical, and otherwise into 36-square-inch regions comprising 4 
in. x 9 in. or 3 in. x 12 in. sections, and the surface temperature 
at the center of each square or section shall be determined with a 
surface thermocouple. The 36-square-inch areas shall be recorded in 
groups where the temperature differential of the 36-square-inch area 
is less than 10 [deg]F for temperature up to 100 [deg]F above room 
temperature and less than 20 [deg]F for temperature more than 100 
[deg]F above room temperature. For forced air central furnaces, the 
circulating air blower compartment is considered as part of the duct 
system and no surface temperature measurement of the blower 
compartment needs to be recorded for the purpose of this test. For 
downflow furnaces, measure all cabinet surface temperatures of the 
heat exchanger and combustion section, including the bottom around 
the outlet duct, and the burner door, using the 36 square-inch 
thermocouple grid.

[[Page 19627]]

The cabinet surface temperatures around the blower section do not 
need to be measured (see figure 3-E of ASHRAE 103-2007.)
    8. Test Procedure. Testing and measurements shall be as 
specified in section 9 of ASHRAE 103-2007 (incorporated by 
reference, see Sec.  430.3) except for sections 9.1.2.1, 9.3, 
9.5.1.1, 9.5.1.2.1, 9.5.1.2.2, 9.5.2.1, and section 9.7.1; and as 
specified in sections 8.1 through 8.6 of this appendix.
    8.1. Direct Measurement of Off-Cycle Losses Testing Method. 
[Reserved]
    8.2. Measurement of Electrical Standby and Off Mode Power. 
[Reserved]
    8.3. Steady-State Conditions for Gas and Oil Furnaces. Steady-
state conditions are indicated by a temperature variation in three 
successive readings, taken 15 minutes apart, of not more than
    (a) 1.5 [deg]F in the stack gas temperature for furnaces 
equipped with draft diverters;
    (b) 2.5 [deg]F in the stack gas temperature for furnaces 
equipped with either draft hoods, direct exhaust, or direct vent 
systems; and
    (c) 0.5 [deg]F in the flue gas temperature for condensing 
furnaces.
    8.4. Steady-state Conditions for Electric Furnaces and Modular 
Blowers. Steady state conditions are indicated by a temperature 
variation of not more than 1 [deg]F in the outlet air temperature in 
four successive temperature readings taken 15 minutes apart.
    8.5. Steady-State Conditions for Cold Flow Tests. For tests 
during which the burner or electric heating elements are turned off 
(i.e., cold flow tests), steady-state conditions are indicated by a 
temperature variation of not more than 1 [deg]F in the outlet air 
temperature in four successive temperature readings taken 15 minutes 
apart.
    8.6. Fan Energy Rating (FER) Test.
    8.6.1. Initial FER test conditions and maximum airflow-control 
setting measurements. The main burner or electric heating elements 
shall be turned off. The furnace fan controls shall be adjusted to 
the maximum airflow-control setting. The external static pressure 
shall be adjusted to the value shown in Table VI.1 by symmetrically 
restricting the outlet of the test duct. Maintain these settings 
until steady-state conditions are attained as specified in section 
8.3, 8.4, and 8.5 of this appendix. Measure and record furnace fan 
electrical input power (EMax) and external static 
pressure (ESPMax).

  Table VI.1--Required Minimum External Static Pressure in the Maximum
              Airflow-Control Setting by Installation Type
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                 ESP
                     Installation type                        (in.w.c.)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Units with an internal, factory-installed evaporator coil..         0.50
Units designed to be paired with an evaporator coil, but            0.65
 without one installed.....................................
Manufactured home..........................................         0.30
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Once the specified ESP has been achieved, the same outlet duct 
restrictions shall be used for the remainder of the furnace fan 
test.
    8.6.2. Constant circulation airflow-control setting 
measurements. The furnace fan controls shall be adjusted to the 
default constant circulation airflow-control setting. If the 
manufacturer does not specify a constant circulation airflow-control 
setting, the lowest airflow-control setting shall be used. Maintain 
these settings until steady-state conditions are attained as 
specified in section 8.3, 8.4, and 8.5 of this appendix. Measure and 
record furnace fan electrical input power (ECirc) and 
external static pressure (ESPCirc).
    8.6.3. Heating airflow-control setting measurements. For single-
stage gas and oil furnaces, the burner shall be fired at the maximum 
heat input rate. Burner adjustments shall be made as specified by 
section 8.4.1 of ASHRAE 103-2007 (incorporated by reference, see 
Sec.  430.3). For single-stage electric furnaces, the electric 
heating elements shall be energized at the maximum heat input rate. 
For multi-stage and modulating furnaces the reduced heat input rate 
settings shall be used. After the burner is activated and adjusted 
or the electric heating elements are energized, the furnace fan 
controls shall be adjusted to operate the fan in the default heat 
airflow-control setting. Maintain these settings until steady-state 
conditions are attained as specified in section 8.3, 8.4, and 8.5 of 
this appendix. Measure and record furnace fan electrical input power 
(EHeat), external static pressure (ESPHeat), 
flue or stack carbon dioxide concentration (XCO2,a), flue 
or stack gas temperature (Ta,SS,X), and temperature rise 
([Delta]THeat).
    9. Nomenclature. Nomenclature shall include the nomenclature 
specified in section 10 of ASHRAE 103-2007 (incorporated by 
reference, see Sec.  430.3) and the following additional variables:

CH = annual furnace fan cooling hours
CCH = annual furnace fan constant-circulation hours
ECirc = furnace fan electrical consumption at the default 
constant-circulation airflow-control setting operating point (or 
minimum airflow-control setting operating point if a default 
constant-circulation airflow-control setting is not specified), in 
watts
EHeat = furnace fan electrical consumption in the default 
heat airflow-control setting for single-stage heating products or 
the default low-heat setting for multi-stage heating products, in 
watts
EMax = furnace fan electrical consumption in the maximum 
airflow-control setting, in watts
ESPi = external static pressure, in inches water column, at time of 
the electrical power measurement in airflow-control setting i, where 
i can be ``Circ'' to represent constant-circulation (or minimum 
airflow) mode, ``Heat'' to represent heating mode, or ``Max'' to 
represent cooling (or maximum airflow) mode.
FER= fan energy rating, in watts/1000 cfm
HH = annual furnace fan heating operating hours
HCR = heating capacity ratio (reduced heat input capacity divided by 
maximum input heat capacity)
kref = physical descriptor characterizing the reference 
system
[Delta]Ti = air throughput temperature rise in setting i, 
in [deg]F
QMax = airflow at maximum airflow-control setting at, in 
cubic feet per minute (CFM)

    10. Calculation of derived results from test measurements for a 
single unit. Calculations shall be as specified in section 11 of 
ASHRAE 103-2007 (incorporated by reference, see Sec.  430.3), except 
for appendices B and C; and as specified in sections 10.1 through 
10.10 and Figure 1 of this appendix.
    10.1. Fan Energy Rating (FER) 
    [GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.026
    
Where:


[[Page 19628]]


[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.027

    The estimated national average operating hours presented in 
Table VI.2 shall be used to calculate FER.

                Table VI.2--Estimated National Average Operating Hour Values for Calculating FER
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                          Single-
             Operating mode                         Variable               stage      Multi-stage or  modulating
                                                                          (hours)              (hours)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Heating.................................  HH                                    830  830/HCR
Cooling.................................  CH                                    640  640
Constant Circulation....................  CCH                                   400  400
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Where:

 [GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP02AP13.028

[FR Doc. 2013-07327 Filed 4-1-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6450-01-P