Refrigerators, combination refrigerator-freezers and freezers
Technical bulletin on amending the standards
On April 2, 2022, the Office of Energy Efficiency at Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) issued a Notice of Intent which identifies its intention to amend Canada’s Energy Efficiency Regulations (the Regulations) to align household refrigerators, combination refrigerator-freezers, and freezers with energy efficiency and testing standards in the United States. In particular, these amendments would align testing standards with the United States Department of Energy (U.S. DOE) recent final test procedure rulemaking and align energy efficiency standards with the U.S. DOE energy conservation standard rulemaking currently underway. The Notice of Intent issued for Canadian Federal requirements indicated that these considered requirements would apply in 2024.
This technical bulletin has been released to initiate the consultation process and to collect stakeholder views on the requirements being considered for household refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers, and freezers.
Input received during this stage of the process will inform the development of the next amendments considered. In addition, NRCan will undertake a cost-benefit analysis using the best available Canadian market data to assess the economic and environmental impacts of these updated standards and to ensure Canadian consumers and businesses benefit from their implementation.
The Government of Canada intends to pre-publish a regulatory proposal in the Canada Gazette, Part I, in 2023.
In Canada, household refrigerators, combination refrigerator-freezers, and freezers manufactured as of February 3, 1995, are subject to the Regulations.
The efficiency standards for household refrigerators, combination refrigerator-freezers, and freezers save energy and reduce overall costs for Canadians. The efficiency standards also reduce energy-related greenhouse gas emissions and encourage manufacturers to adopt efficient product designs.
In 2018, the Memorandum of Understanding between the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat and the United States Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs Regarding the Canada–United States Regulatory Cooperation Council was signed to move forward on energy efficiency and foster alignment of federal regulations where feasible and appropriate. In 2021, NRCan and the U.S. DOE signed the Memorandum of Understanding Between the Department of Natural Resources of Canada and the Department of Energy of the United States of America Concerning Cooperation on Energy, which acknowledges that both countries will collaborate on new and updated energy efficiency and testing standards where feasible and appropriate.
On October 12, 2021, the U.S. DOE published a Federal Register final rule pertaining to refrigeration products, which updated the testing standards for household refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers, and freezers (86 FR 56790). Separately, on October 15, 2021, the U.S. DOE published a notice pertaining to refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers, and freezers, which introduced the preliminary analysis results for revised energy efficiency standards (86 FR 57378).
NRCan is considering amending the Regulations to align with the updated testing standard, and to align with the revised energy efficiency standard currently under development by the U.S. DOE.
A refrigerator is defined in the Regulations as a household refrigerator that has a capacity of 1,105 L (39 cubic feet) or less and that has a defrost system, including a compressor-cycled automatic defrost system.
It does not include:
- a household refrigerator that uses an absorption refrigeration system; or
- a miscellaneous refrigeration product.
A combination refrigerator-freezer is defined in the Regulations as a household combination refrigerator-freezer that has a defrost system, including a compressor-cycled automatic defrost system and a capacity of 1,105 L (39 cubic feet) or less.
A freezer is defined in the Regulations as a household freezer that has a capacity of 850 litres (30 cubic feet) or less.
NRCan is considering incorporating the following testing standards, using ambulatory incorporation by reference:
For refrigerators and combination refrigerator-freezers:
- Appendix A to Subpart B, Part 430 of Title 10 to the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations, entitled Uniform Test Method for Measuring the Energy Consumption of Refrigerators, Refrigerator-Freezers, and Miscellaneous Refrigeration Products.
- Appendix B to Subpart B, Part 430 of Title 10 to the United States Code of Federal Regulations, entitled Uniform Test Method for Measuring the Energy Consumption of Freezers.
Energy efficiency standard
NRCan is considering incorporating the energy efficiency standards pertaining to household refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers, and freezers currently under development by the U.S. DOE, using an ambulatory incorporation by reference. Information about recent and ongoing activities related to the U.S DOE rulemaking is available online through the U.S. DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.
These modifications to the Regulations would come into force six months after the date of publication in the Canada Gazette, Part II.
NRCan is considering applying the updated energy performance and test standards to household refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers, and freezers manufactured on or after December 31, 2024.
NRCan is not considering any changes for the labelling requirements for household refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers, and freezers. An EnerGuide label must be attached to every new household refrigerator, combination refrigerator-freezer, and freezer subject to the Regulations.
NRCan is considering removing the size categories described in the Regulations. For the purposes of the EnerGuide label, the size categories would remain in NRCan’s EnerGuide label guidelines that are available and distributed to dealers and manufacturers. This administrative change has no impact on the scope of the Regulations.
NRCan is not considering any changes for the energy efficiency verification requirements for household refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers, and freezers.
These products will continue to carry a third party verification mark indicating that the product meets the energy efficiency standard and that the information to be reported has been verified.
The verification mark is the mark of a Standards Council of Canada accredited certification body that operates an energy efficiency certification program for the product.
Energy efficiency report
For freezers, NRCan is considering repealing the ice freezing capacity from the reporting requirements. This would reduce reporting burden and align with the U.S. test procedure under consideration.
For refrigerators and combination refrigerator-freezers, NRCan is not considering changes to the energy efficiency report requirements.
The Regulations apply to products imported or shipped inter-provincially for sale or lease in Canada. This report must be submitted, by the dealer, to NRCan before the product is imported into Canada or traded inter-provincially for the first time.
There is no change to import reporting.
The purpose of this bulletin is to provide stakeholders with the technical detail required to comment on the requirements under consideration for refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers, and freezers.
NRCan is interested in getting feedback on the manufacturing date under consideration, namely December 31, 2024, and its:
- implications for certification bodies;
- implications for manufacturers; and
- benefits to Canadians.
It is important to NRCan that we engage the public and stakeholders on amendments to the Energy Efficiency Regulations. If you are aware of any dealer, manufacturer, importer, retailer, utility provider, small business, consumer group, organization, or representative of a specific group(s) of the population (including, but not limited to, women, 2SLGBTQQIA+ people, persons with disabilities, visible minorities, socio-economic status, residency, housing status, etc.), Indigenous peoples/communities, and/or other person or group that may be interested in participating in the amendment discussion and/or may be negatively impacted by this proposal, please forward them or the representative this bulletin. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to the email distribution list (emails are used to notify stakeholders of upcoming amendments, technical bulletins, webinar registrations, and official publication in the Canada Gazette).
Additional information on Canada’s Energy Efficiency Regulations including a current list of Standards Council of Canada accredited certification bodies can be found on the Department’s website.
We welcome your comments by October 31, 2022. All correspondence should be forwarded to:Natural Resources Canada
Office of Energy Efficiency
580 Booth Street
Ottawa, ON, K1A 0E4
Email subject heading to be:
Bulletin – Refrigerators, Refrigerator-Freezers, and Freezers – Réfrigérateurs, réfrigérateurs-congélateurs, et congélateurs – July 2022 juillet
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