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What Does Energy Factor Mean?

What does energy factor mean? This is a metric that the United States uses to compare the energy conversion’s efficiency in regards to appliances and equipment that are used within your home. Currently, the energy factor rating is used to rate how efficient things like clothes washers and dryers, dishwashers and water heaters really are. The U.S. Department of Energy develops and enforces minimal energy conservation standards as part of their Energy Conservation Program.

Even though the term “energy factor” is used when comparing appliances’ relative efficiency, the metric is actually defined differently for each of these appliances. Ultimately, it is defined in terms of site energy though. This excludes the loss of energy via the conversion process. According to federal standards this is defined by fuel, type and storage volume. The Department of Energy also defines all of these metrics.

Some of the energy conversion efficiency standards that you should know about are as follows:
1. Dishwashers’ energy factor is defined as how many cycles per kWh of input power they have.
2. Clothes washers’ energy factor is defined as the capacity in cubic feet for each kWh of input power that each cycle takes.
3. Clothes dryers’ energy factor is defined as how many pounds of laundry can be dried per kWh of power that is consumed. Unfortunately, this definition is currently stifling the innovation and competitiveness of dryers. As such, manufacturers aren’t able to do much about this second biggest energy consumer within your home today.
4. Water heaters’ energy factor is defined by using the results from a 24-hour stimulated test run. This test run is done via a hot water use pattern whereby the water is drawn in 6 equal draws for a total of 64.3 gallon, which is followed by an 18 hour standby period.

Now that you are more knowledgeable about what the energy factor rating is you will be better able to decide upon which appliances will better suit your household’s needs. However, if you’re still in need of some help with this, then call us for all your air conditioning and heating system needs.