Energy Department and AHAM Join Forces on ENERGY STAR Testing for Appliances


The U.S.
Department of Energy
(DOE) announced today in
a blog posting
that it recognizes AHAM
certification body for clothes washers, dishwashers, refrigerators,
refrigerator/freezers and freezers.

EPA states: “This agreement is a
reflection of DOE's and AHAM's extensive and long-standing collaborative work
together on verification and represent the kind of creative, public-private
partnership that benefits industry, consumers, and government alike.??

Prior to the agreement, AHAM and
EPA conducted separate appliance verification programs.  Working together, AHAM and DOE can conserve
taxpayer dollars and eliminate duplicative testing.  Consumers can purchase AHAM Verifide appliances knowing that the federal
testing procedures for measuring an appliance’s energy consumption are trusted
and were developed by the U.S. Department of Energy.

EPA also stated in their post:

“As an EPA-approved certification body, AHAM
will administer verification testing for the  ENERGY
STAR program, which includes verifying data and reporting on specifications.
AHAM will continue to follow a
series of stringent testing requirements, holding appliances that are potentially eligible for ENERGY STAR
certification to the highest of standards, helping to ensure that these appliances deliver
significant savings for energy efficiency and quality performance. In addition, AHAM will identify instances of
potential noncompliance with ENERGY STAR requirements
and federal energy conservation standards. AHAM will notify relevant government stakeholders, including
the Energy Department, if an appliance is noncompliant with any program requirement, so that the
appropriate agency can rectify any issues with compliance."

to read the rest of the blog post.   Last year, more than 15 million appliances
were shipped with the AHAM Verifide mark.   
To search for appliances that have earned the mark, click here.

Smart Appliances: Smarter Than You Think

Chances are you’ve had an appliance repairman at your home at some point over the years, and it probably involved him taking apart the appliance to try to find out what’s wrong with it. In the future, those days will be gone.

If you haven’t been in an appliance showroom lately, you may not have realized that appliances are getting smarter. And you wouldn’t be alone – even the host of This Old House Kevin O’Connor, found that out recently when his dryer wasn’t working properly.

A recent article in the Sacramento Bee highlights the appliance industry’s continued development of smart appliances – appliances that are able to “talk” to their owners to operate at certain times of the day and to assist in the diagnosing of any problems.

As for O’Connor, he called the customer service number who was able to remotely diagnose his dryer’s problem as being related to a clogged exhaust vent – a task he was able to take care of himself without having to pay for a repairman to visit.

Appliance companies are using this new technology differently. Some allow owners to download free apps and allow them to interact with their appliances using their smart phone, tablet or computer and tell them when the drying cycle is complete, for example. Other appliances come equipped with a data port that allow service technicians to connect via their laptop to scan for any issues, similar to the way a mechanic can scan a car’s computer for problems.

Warwick Stirling, senior director of connectivity and sustainability for Whirlpool, says, “We’re moving from the electro-mechanical to the software-driven space. We’ve found we can get more reliability from
solid-state electronics.”

Click here to read the full article.

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