SIDNEY, Ohio — In a new survey, Emerson followed up with HVAC contractors and wholesalers about their knowledge of and preparation for increasing federal minimum SEER/IEER efficiency requirements mandated for a/c systems and heat pumps by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), which became effective Jan. 1. According to the results, most respondents (91%) are aware of the upcoming regulatory changes, and the majority have at least a basic understanding of requirements (61%). Compared to last year’s survey results, there was a significant increase in the number of industry professionals who say they have an extensive understanding of these regulations and their requirements, from 9% to 21% of respondents.
The survey shows there was a significant decline in respondents who currently had no plans to act on the new ratings procedure and the change from SEER to SEER2 in central air conditioning (44% to 14%) as well as the upcoming changes on refrigerant regulations (37% to 14%). Additionally, most respondents said daily operations have already been affected by the 2023 regulations changes. Since last year’s survey, many respondents have talked to original equipment manufacturers, attended product information meetings, created a new inventory plan, trained service personnel, and developed new marketing plans for new standards. Additionally, there was an uptick in companies who said their operations are affected by the new standards, from 61% to 80%.
“With so many new residential and commercial AC energy efficiency regulations changes arriving in a matter of months and alternative refrigerant requirements starting in 2025, it’s a positive sign for our industry to see so many contractors and wholesalers have put in the time and research to understand what these changes mean and what they need to do to prepare,” said Becky Hoelscher, director, aftermarket sales, for Emerson. “Emerson understands that as a trusted partner, it is important for us to work with our customers to ensure they have all the information and assistance they need to face these new changes with confidence.”
As far as the leading concerns amongst respondents, 78% of respondents are concerned with creating a new inventory plan (up from 60% in 2021). To combat these challenges, Emerson offers numerous tools that help businesses manage their inventory with more efficiency and less risk. Additionally, 76% of respondents are concerned with developing new marketing plans with these regulations (up from 58% in 2021). Emerson offers a broad range of manuals, guides, data sheets, and marketing materials to help keep customers up to date on the latest key product information.
“Emerson is committed to finding ways to make jobs easier for industry professionals and giving them tools to remain proactive in preparing their businesses for these upcoming changes and emerging trends such as electrification and heat pump solutions,“ Hoelscher continued. “We do this by empowering these professionals with comprehensive education, training, and certification on the latest refrigerants and regulations, as well as by offering regulation-ready, lower-GWP products like the Copeland™ ZPKZ, ZPK7, and ZPSK7 compressor platforms.”
For more information on HVACR industry regulations and how to get regulation ready, visit Emerson’s regulations site. More information specific to commercial regulations can be found here, while more information on residential regulations can be found here.