To All Florida Building Code Officials and Interested Parties:
RE: Guidance Regarding Permits and New Energy Efficiency Standards for Central Air
Conditioners as Mandated by U.S. Department of Energy – Effective January 1, 2023
The following guidance is intended to provide clarification on the memorandum that was sent out on August 2022 regarding the U.S. Department of Energy’s new efficiency standard for central air conditioners contained in the Code of Federal Regulations at 10 C.F.R. § 430.32(c)(5)-(6). The August 2022 memorandum is available from the following link:
The U.S. Department of Energy’s new efficiency standard for central air conditioners will be effective January 1, 2023. In order to facilitate a smooth transition to this new efficiency standard, building code officials should provide a great level of flexibility to building permits issued prior to December 31, 2022. Therefore, the following information is being sent to serve as guidance.
Building Code officials may use Section 104.11 “Alternative materials, design and methods of construction and equipment” of the Florida Building Code, to allow home builders, with existing permit(s), to install SEER2 HVAC systems that meet or exceed the equipment efficiency standard specified in their existing permit(s) without requesting a revision to the construction documents. To support the building code official’s analysis pursuant to Section 104.11 “Alternative materials, design, and methods of construction and equipment” there are two possible alternatives:
- A home builder may provide a building code official a letter from a certified engineer, along with the appropriate manufacturing documentation (AHRI) that collectively show compliance with the Florida Building Code – Energy Conservation.
- A home builder may also submit a revised energy calculation using residential energy compliance software that was approved by the Florida Building Commission on September 16, 2022.
The information and processes described above are consistent with current Florida Building Code requirements in Section 104.11 “Alternative materials, design, and methods of construction” and Section R403.7 “Equipment sizing.”
Should you have any questions regarding this memorandum, please contact us at 850-487-1824.
Building Codes and Standards Office