2015 NAECA Water Heater Efficiency Standards

Serving Portland OR | Beaverton OR

What Is NAECA?

The National Appliance and Energy Conservation Act (NAECA) will require that all household manufactured appliances for sale in the U.S. and Canada will undergo energy efficient upgrades. Part of this act requires nearly all residential electric, oil, gas and tankless gas water heaters to carry higher Energy Factor (EF) ratings. Beginning on April 16, 2015, all newly manufactured water heaters will need to have higher EF ratings. There are two size categories for electric and gas water heaters which are 20 to 55 gallon, and 55 gallon and larger.

How Will These Changes Affect You?

The new energy efficient mandated upgrades will require water heater manufacturers to alter their production process in order to comply with the new standards. Manufacturers have the option to either increase the diameter of the heaters or decrease their capacity, to meet the new federal regulations. Due to the size of apartment homes and condominiums, manufacturers will likely chose to decrease the capacity of newly produced water heaters to avoid installation challenges that may occur as a result of increasing the diameter of water heaters. Water heaters in apartment homes and condominiums will be under the size category of 20 to 55 gallons.

Apartment homes and condominiums that need a replacement water heater after April 16, 2015 will have no choice but to install a smaller water heater to comply with the new NAECA standards. This means that residents in these housing structures will not have access to the same amount of hot water as they were once accustomed to.

Those living in single family homes likely have the space capacity for a water heater under the 55 gallon and larger category. The new NAECA changes will not affect the hot water capacity of those heaters.

NAECA 2015 Water Heater Efficiency Standards Changes D&F Plumbing Portland OR Beaverton Oregon

Price Increases and Inventory Available

In addition to the changes in hot water capacity for some homes, an increase in price will probably occur as well. The last significant appliance efficiency upgrade resulted in a substantial increase in the prices for new appliances. At this point, it is difficult to discern how much the price of water heaters will increase, however if history is any indicator of what is to come then prices are surely to increase markedly.

Furthermore, inventory produced before the April 16, 2015 deadline will still be sold in stores after the April deadline however, it is hard to determine how long that will be permitted. Many anticipate the excess inventory of water heaters manufactured before April 16, 2015 to be purchased by corporate homebuilders.

In light of the new NAECA standards, what action should you take?

Those living in the Beaverton and Portland, OR areas are likely to be affected by the 2015 NAECA water heater changes. You should start by identifying the age of the water heater, whether you are a home owner, property manager, or apartment complex owner. Check the manufacturers’ warranty on the water heater, and have it inspected. This will allow you to plan for when you need a replacement. If you indeed need a water heater replacement you can:

  • Buy a water heater that meets the current standard. If you act quickly, you can purchase and install a water heater at the current standard so your water heater capacity will not be altered.
  • Purchase a water heater that meets the new 2015 NAECA standards. If you acquire a water heater than meets the new standards before the new regulations are put into place, you will save money from the significant increase in price that is expected to occur. You will also reap the benefits of lower energy costs.
  • Wait until April 16, 2015 to replace your water heater and see what the changes will actually bring in terms of pricing and installation.

If you have any further questions that we can clarify, please contact us or call us or give us a call at 503-282-0993. We are here to help.