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Questions About Home Sealing

What is a home envelope?
The exterior of your home is also called the “envelope” or shell. (See the orange line showing the envelope in the diagram at left.) The insulation, outer walls, ceiling, doors, windows, and floors all work together to control airflow in and out of the structure, repel moisture, and prevent heat from being lost or gained inside your home. A high-performance envelope helps maintain a consistent temperature even under extremely hot or cold conditions. The goal of Home Sealing is to improve the home envelope to make homes more comfortable and energy efficient.

What is air sealing and why is it important?

Air sealing is simply closing holes, cracks, and gaps where air can pass into or out of your home. On hot and cold days, you pay money to run an air conditioner or a furnace to maintain your home at a comfortable temperature. A house that leaks air costs more to heat or cool because your system must work longer to “condition” the air. In addition, if you happen to sit next to one of those leaks, you are uncomfortable because the room feels hotter or colder. Sealing those air leaks will help you maintain your home at a comfortable temperature all year long and help lower energy bills.

The biggest holes are most often found in the attic and the basement. Caulk, spray foam, and weather stripping are the most common materials used for air sealing.

Why is insulation important?
Insulation is designed to resist heat flow – that is, if it is hot outside, insulation greatly reduces the amount of heat you can feel inside a house. Or, if it is cold outside, insulation helps keep the heat inside the house. Without insulation, the walls of your house would be very hot to the touch during the summer and your air conditioner must work harder to keep you cool. In the winter, a lack of insulation makes walls very cold to the touch and the furnace must work harder to keep you warm.

However, insulation works best when air is not moving through or around it. Therefore, it is very important that air leaks be sealed to ensure that you get the full performance out of any insulation that is installed.

To get the biggest savings, the easiest place to add insulation is in the attic. When adding insulation to your house it is important to first evaluate how much and what type of insulation you currently have in you attic. The Recommended Levels of Insulation table can help you determine what is most cost-effective for your home.

The most common types of insulation are fiberglass (batt and blown), cellulose, rigid foam, rock wool, and spray foam.

Can I over-seal my house? (Make it too tight?)
While it is possible to seal a house too tightly, it is unlikely to happen in most older homes because they are much more leaky than they should be. A certain amount of fresh air is needed for good indoor air quality and there are specifications that set the minimum amount of fresh air needed for a house. If you are concerned about how tight your home is, you can hire an energy specialist who can perform an air leakage test with a “blower door.” If a home is too tight, fresh air ventilation can be added.

Is Home Sealing something I can do myself?
Yes! There are air sealing and insulation activities you can do yourself and it is worth doing. A handy homeowner can seal up holes, weather strip doors, caulk pipes and wires, and often insulate attic floors, basements, and crawl space walls. It’s important to remember, however, that air-sealing is just as important as insulation.

You can also hire an energy specialist who uses special tools, like a blower door, to find hidden leaks and are experienced at sealing and adding insulation. The blower door can also test how tight your home is after sealing. A Home Energy Rater or other energy consultant can perform a blower-door test and develop a plan for the most cost-effective measures to improve your home. Also, blown-in and sprayed insulation are usually best left to professional installers who have all the equipment. If you hire a contractor, shop around and get several written bids. Remember that a quality installation is more important than low cost. At the end of a job, contractors that install insulation are required by the Federal Trade Commission to provide you with a signed receipt that shows the R-value of the insulation they added.

What is reflective insulation (a radiant barrier)?
Reflective insulation (also called a radiant barrier) is a metallic foil material (usually aluminum) designed to block radiant heat transfer across open spaces. According to the Dept. of Energy’s (DOE) Radiant Barrier Fact Sheet, reflective insulation can be effective at reducing cooling bills and, possibly, reducing heating bills in homes. DOE also states that the performance and long-term cost-effectiveness of the product depends on number of factors, including: where the product is installed, how the product is installed, and the amount of existing insulation currently in the home. DOE and the Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC) have excellent and detailed web sites that explain how the product works, general guidance on the best way to install the product, which climates the product is most cost effective, and energy savings one could reasonably expect. Please read through these sites for more information on this product category:
DOE: http://www.ornl.gov/sci/roofs+walls/radiant/rb_01.html 
FSEC: http://www.fsec.ucf.edu/pubs/energynotes/en-15.htm  

Commercial Steam Cookers

Steam Cookers, also known as “compartment steamers”, that have earned the ENERGY STAR are up to 60% more energy-efficient than standard models. 

Earning the ENERGY STAR

ENERGY STAR qualified steam cookers include both electric and gas models. Steam cookers that earn the ENERGY STAR must meet a minimum cooking efficiency* of 50% (electric) and 38% (gas) while also meeting maximum idle energy rates. Idle energy rates are given for 3-, 4-, 5-, and 6-pan sizes.

Energy-efficient steam cookers that have earned the ENERGY STAR offer shorter cook times, higher production rate, and reduced heat loss due to better insulation and more efficient steam delivery system.

Where can I get one?

Contact the manufacturers directly or speak with your food equipment supplier.

What can ENERGY STAR qualified steam cookers save me?

Each ENERGY STAR qualified electric steam cooker can save businesses 6,620 kWh annually, or an average of $450/year on utility bills. Each ENERGY STAR qualified gas steam cooker can save 124 MBtu annually, or an average of $820/year on utility bills. 

* Under heavy-load conditions

Remodeling Tips To Improve Efficiency

Attic Conversion

Make your attic a comfortable and energy-efficient living space?

Prescription Checklist:

  • Control air leakage throughout the house by air sealing the attic space.
  • Keep your new attic space comfortable and energy efficient by insulating the walls and ceilings.
  • If you are replacing windows, doors, and skylights, install those with the ENERGY STAR label to save money and energy while increasing your comfort.
  • To brighten up your attic space select ENERGY STAR light fixtures: suspended lights, ceiling-mounted lights, cabinet lights, recessed lights, or compact fluorescent bulbs. 

Kitchen Remodel

To save money and energy year after year when remodeling your kitchen:

  • Install ENERGY STAR labeled appliances (e.g., refrigerators, dishwashers, and clothes washers)
  • Install ENERGY STAR- labeled lighting (e.g., light fixtures: suspended lights, ceiling-mounted lights, cabinet lights, recessed lights, and compact fluorescent bulbs)

If your remodeling plans include opening walls you could improve your comfort and the energy efficiency of your home by adding insulation and air sealing. If you are replacing the windows, doors, and skylights, install those with the ENERGY STAR label to make your kitchen the most energy efficient on the block.

Home Entertainment

Did you know that you can save money and improve the acoustics of your home theater by making it more energy efficient?

  • Insulate and air seal your home theater to reduce outside noise and keep theater noise from bothering any neighboring rooms.
  • Look for the ENERGY STAR label on TVs, VCRs, DVDs, home audio products, and other electronics. Typically, these items use almost the same amount of energy whether off or on, but ENERGY STAR labeled home electronics power down to require only a few watts when turned off.

Home Office

Did you know that incandescent lights and inefficient office equipment create substantial waste heat? This added heat could make the temperature in your office uncomfortable and increase your cooling costs. To reduce cooling costs and save energy:

  • Look for the ENERGY STAR label when choosing computers, monitors, printers, fax machines, copiers, scanners, and multifunction devices. 
  • Make sure your home PC is using its power management capabilities. A screen saver does not save energy, but an enabled ENERGY STAR labeled monitor will conserve energy by going blank after a preset period of inactivity. 
  • Incorporate ENERGY STAR qualified lighting to reduce eyestrain and save money. 
  • Replace existing bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs that burn less hot than halogens or incandescent bulbs and use less energy to operate.

Building an Addition

Incorporating energy efficiency into your addition can improve the comfort and safety of your home while saving you money and energy. Consider the following when planning your addition:

  • Install ENERGY STAR labeled lighting to save up to one-third on your lighting costs. Learn about light fixtures and compact fluorescent bulbs.
  • Install ENERGY STAR labeled windows, doors, and skylights appropriate for your climate region. The location and type of windows and doors will affect the comfort and efficiency of your home.
  • Consider passive solar designs that take advantage of solar heat gain in cold climates, and shading to block heat from the sun in warm climates.
  • Install properly sized ENERGY STAR labeled heating and cooling equipment. In addition to being efficient, ENERGY STAR furnaces and boilers have sealed combustion chambers that reduce the risk posed by carbon monoxide. 
  • Seal your ducts in unconditioned space to save energy and improve comfort.
  • Consider using advanced framing techniques (794 KB) to allow for an increased amount of insulation and less thermal bridging. 
  • Install appropriate levels of insulation in the walls, ceiling, and floor. 
  • Air seal to reduce outside air infiltration. 
  • Ensure proper ventilation for the appropriate amount of air exchange and healthier indoor air quality.

Clothes Washers

Clothes Washers Compared to a model manufactured before 1994, an ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washer can save up to $110 per year on your utility bills. 

Earning the ENERGY STAR means a product meets strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the US Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Energy. Through superior design and system features, ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washers clean clothes using 50% less energy than standard washers. The Modified Energy Factor (MEF) measures the energy used during the washing process, including machine energy, water heating energy, and dryer energy. The higher the MEF, the more efficient the clothes washer is.

Most full-sized ENERGY STAR qualified washers use 18-25 gallons of water per load, compared to the 40 gallons used by a standard machine. The Water Factor measures the gallons of water used per cycle per cubic foot (for example, a 3.0 cubic foot washer using 27 gallons per cycle has a water factor of 9.0). The lower the water factor, the less water the machine uses. Water factor is listed on the qualified product list. 

Excel version of qualified clothes washer list HTML version of the qualified clothes washer list.

Most ENERGY STAR qualified washers extract more water from clothes during the spin cycle. This reduces the drying time and saves energy and wear and tear on your clothes.

ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washers are available in both top-loading and front-loading designs.
ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washers are available as both residential and residential-style commercial clothes washers. Residential-style commercial clothes washers may or may not be coin-operated.

Remember, saving energy prevents pollution.

By choosing ENERGY STAR, you are helping prevent global warming and promote cleaner air without sacrificing the product quality and performance you expect. You may also be interested to know that you can save extra energy while washing clothes, whether with a standard or an ENERGY STAR qualified model: Wash full loads – Clothes washers are most efficient when operated with full loads. Wash clothes in cold water

What about Clothes Dryers?

ENERGY STAR does not label clothes dryers because most dryers use similar amounts of energy, which means there is little difference in the energy use between models. To reduce the amount of energy your clothes dryer uses: Use the moisture sensor option on your dryer, which automatically shuts off the machine when the clothes are dry. If your clothes washer has spin options, choose a high spin speed or extended spin option to reduce the amount of remaining moisture, thus starting the drying process before you put your clothes in the dryer. Air dry clothes whenever possible. To learn more about clothes dryers and energy efficiency, please visit the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Web page on dryers.

Choosing A Clothes Washing Machine

Choose a size that meets your household needs. ENERGY STAR labeled clothes washers are available in many sizes, ranging in capacity from 1.6 to 3.8 cubic feet. ENERGY STAR qualified models are also available in stackable and under-the-counter designs, which fit in smaller spaces.

Choose a model with a low water factor. Water Factor measures the gallons per cycle per cubic foot used by a clothes washer. The lower the value, the less water used per load. Water factor is listed on the qualified product list.

Look for several water level options. Choose a washing machine that has several options for adjusting the water level to fit the load.

Choose a model with a “mini-basket.” A mini-basket is a small tub that fits over the agitator, allowing you to wash very small loads.

Look for pre-soaking and suds-saver options. Both pre-soaking options and suds-saver features conserve energy.

Check the yellow EnergyGuide label. This label helps you determine how much energy it takes to operate the model, compare the energy use of similar models, and estimate annual operating costs. View a sample label.

Ask for ENERGY STAR. When buying a clothes washer from a contractor rather than a retail outlet, request an ENERGY STAR qualified model to ensure that it is energy-efficient.

Top Loading & Front Loading Clothes Washers

Top-loading models look like conventional machines from the outside, but these ENERGY STAR qualified washers use different types of washing action to get clothes clean with less water and energy. Many have sensors to monitor incoming water temperature closely. They also rinse clothes with repeated high-pressure spraying instead of soaking them in a full tub of water. Front-loading models are similar to machines used in laundromats. They use a horizontal or tumble-axis basket to lift and drop clothing into the water instead of rubbing clothes around a central agitator. Both top-loading and front-loading ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washers save water and energy. They also use faster spin speeds to extract more water from clothes, reducing dryer time and energy use. For both models, check to see if you need to use special detergent. Low-water washers use special low-suds detergent for best results. Ask your sales representative for recommendations on detergent use.

Commercial Solid Door Refrigerators & Freezers

ENERGY STAR labeled commercial solid door refrigerators and freezers are designed to help save money on your utility bills and reduce energy waste.

Where can I get one?

Contact the manufacturers directly or speak to your food equipment supplier.

What can ENERGY STAR labeled commercial solid door refrigerators and freezers save me?

ENERGY STAR labeled commercial solid door refrigerators and freezers are more energy efficient because they are designed with components such as ECM evaporator and condenser fan motors, hot gas anti-sweat heaters, or high-efficiency compressors, which will significantly reduce energy consumption and utility bills. Compared to standard models, ENERGY STAR labeled commercial solid door refrigerators and freezers can lead to energy savings of as much as 46% with a 1.3 year payback. By buying commercial solid door refrigerators and freezers, purchasers can expect to save $140 annually per refrigerator and $100 per freezer. Replacing all existing commercial solid door refrigerators and freezers in the US with ENERGY STAR labeled models would result in savings of almost $250 million per year, or roughly 25% of the energy consumed by models currently on the market — the equivalent of eliminating the emissions from 475,000 cars.

Why Build ENERGY STAR Qualified New Homes?

Because building ENERGY STAR qualified new homes offers builders: Increased Profits Increased Customer Satisfaction Recognition for Environmental Leadership Increased Profits To understand how ENERGY STAR qualified new homes can increase your profits, you first must understand the true cost of owning a home. Unless a buyer pays cash for a home, there will be two major costs each month – the mortgage payment and the utility bills. Because of the energy efficiency features, ENERGY STAR qualified new home’s utility bills can be significantly lower than those of a typical home, which makes it cheaper to own and maintain. (See Figure 1.)

Figure 1. ENERGY STAR Qualified New Home 

Monthly Annual Utility Savings $45 $540 Additional Mortgage Costs² $20 $240 Net Savings $25$ 300 Savings will increase as utility costs go up. Mortgage costs for ~$3,000 of improvements remain fixed! This extra savings can… Make it easier for you to sell options

Once you’ve demonstrated to home buyers how an ENERGY STAR qualified new home can create a revenue stream that is nonexistent in standard housing, you can show them how those savings can be used to purchase options, while still keeping their monthly costs below that of a standard home. For example, the buyer of the ENERGY STAR qualified new home in Figure 1 can use that $300 annual savings to purchase $3,000 in options. This would raise the monthly mortgage payment on the ENERGY STAR qualified new home, but this is more than offset by the monthly utility bill savings. This means that the buyer of the ENERGY STAR qualified new home now owns a higher value home, yet is paying the same amount monthly as the buyer of a standard home.

These extra options not only help the bottom line, they also make your homes more attractive to potential buyers. To assist builders with utilizing the ENERGY STAR brand in marketing efforts we provide sales and marketing materials in our Tools & Resources section.

Increase your profit margin

Energy efficient homes offer buyers more value and as a builder, you should be able to make more money selling them. By selling the true costs of owning an ENERGY STAR qualified new home, you can increase the list price of the home to capture the extra value without hurting your ability to sell the home. You need only demonstrate to potential buyers how the ENERGY STAR qualified new home will cost them less to own than a standard home with a lower list price.

Allow you to sell more homes through ENERGY STAR financing

Buying an ENERGY STAR qualified new home gives homebuyers access to preferred financing that maximizes their purchasing power. ENERGY STAR and energy-efficient mortgages allow buyers to capitalize on the projected cash savings from lower utility bills by increasing their PITI, thus increasing their qualifying amount by the projected utility savings. Therefore, your buyers are able to purchase more options, and/or more home, at their present income level. Use our New Homes Partner Locator to find lenders in your area who offer ENERGY STAR Mortgages, or find out how you can get your lending partners involved.

Increased Customer Satisfaction 

Building ENERGY STAR qualified new homes allows you to improve the performance of the homes at little or no additional cost. You can offer home buyers superior comfort and indoor air quality, quieter interiors, the opportunity for higher resale value, and a more environmentally friendly home – all for a lower cost than a standard home. 

Many builders claim to build energy efficient home, but the ENERGY STAR label on your homes assures buyers they really are getting what they are paying. This is because ENERGY STAR qualified new homes are third-party verified by home energy professionals. And since the third party verification of ENERGY STAR qualified new homes occurs during construction, it eliminates many of the problems that can lead to costly callbacks and reduced customer confidence. 

And since many benefits of an ENERGY STAR qualified new home are not visible, such as increased comfort and quality, improved indoor air quality, etc, we’ve provided a simple guide to appreciating the differences (32KB) to help you convey thus benefits to your buyers. Use this resource, and many others provided by ENERGY STAR and its successful partners, to gain an advantage over your competition. 

Recognition for Environmental Leadership

Affiliating yourself with a nationally recognized brand will lend credibility to your energy-efficient and environmental claims. All active builder partners are listed on our Web listing New Homes Partner Locator in accordance with our web listing and Web linking policies.

Duct Sealing

Your new or existing cooling and heating equipment is only as good as the system that delivers air to every room. Central air conditioners, heat pumps and forced air furnaces rely on a system of ducts to circulate air throughout your home. To maintain comfort and good indoor air quality, it is important to have the proper balance between the air being supplied to each room and the air returning to your cooling and heating equipment. Leaky ducts can cause an unbalanced system that wastes energy. Sealing your ducts is one solution that can improve your system’s ability to consistently cool and heat every room in your home.

Whether you’re having new equipment installed or working to improve the performance of your existing cooling and heating system, you should have your duct system checked. If you’re not sure if you need to get your ducts checked, try the diagnose your ducts quiz.

Most duct improvement repairs require the assistance of a contractor. A good contractor will: 

  • Identify any duct leaks with diagnostic equipment.
  • Seal your ducts with mastic, metal-backed tape, or aerosol sealant. Duct tape should not be used because it can not withstand high temperatures and will not last.
  • Test airflow after ducts are sealed.
  • Insulate your ducts where it counts to keep the air at its desired temperature as it moves through the system. The contractor should use duct insulation material rated at R-6 to insulate ducts located in unconditioned spaces such as an attic or crawlspace.
  • Conduct a combustion safety test after ducts are sealed to be sure all gas or oil-burning appliances are working properly.

What are the benefits of duct sealing?

There are a number of benefits associated with sealing your ducts to meet the ENERGY STAR Duct Specification including health, safety, comfort, saving money, and protecting the environment.

  • Health: Air may leak into your duct system if it is not sealed properly. This can be harmful to your health because air leaks in the return duct may contain fumes from household and garden chemicals, insulation particles, and dust. These items can aggravate existing asthma and allergy problems. Why take the risk? By simply upgrading the energy efficiency of your duct system, you can avoid potential health problems. 
  • Safety: Safety in your home should be your number one priority. Duct leaks can cause equipment to backdraft (i.e., when combustion gases flow back into your home, instead of out the vents). If fireplaces, wood stoves, water heaters, furnaces, clothes dryers or other combustion devices are in these depressurized areas, invisible gases, such as carbon monoxide (CO), can backdraft into your home instead of going up the chimney. Make the smart choice and choose to seal your ducts. 
  • Comfort: Duct leaks and improper duct sizing can affect the comfort level in your home by keeping some places cooler or warmer than others. The source of discomfort in your home may be leaky ducts or improper sizing. Sealing your ducts can help you breathe easier by improving your indoor air quality, reducing the risk of pollutants entering and circulating through your home. They also save energy and money. 
  • Save Money: Leaking ducts can decrease the overall efficiency of your heating and cooling system by as much as 20%. Duct sealing increases efficiency and lowers your energy bills. The typical family could save up to $150 annually.
  • Protect the Environment: Energy generation and use is the single largest contributor to air pollution. If you’re wasting up to 20% of your heating and cooling systems’ performance through leaky ducts, your home is using more energy to get the same job done. By sealing your ducts and reducing the amount of energy necessary to comfortably heat or cool your home, you will reduce the amount of air pollution generated. 

Ducts Resources

Below are links to related sites and information. These links will take you out of the ENERGY STAR Web site.

The articles below warn about some of the failures of cloth duct tape:

Dehumidifiers

How Do I Know If I Need a Dehumidifier? A 40-pint ENERGY STAR qualified dehumidifier can save consumers roughly $20 per year. This can add up to $200 or more over the 10 year life of the unit. That’s enough to pay for the dehumidifier!

Earning the ENERGY STAR means a product meets strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the US Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy. ENERGY STAR qualified models have more efficient refrigeration coils, compressors, and fans than conventional models, which means they use less energy to remove moisture.  An ENERGY STAR qualified model removes the same amount of moisture as a similarly-sized standard unit, but uses less energy — at least 10% less, and in some cases up to 23% less. You can calculate specific energy and money savings by using the dehumidifier calculator available on the ENERGY STAR Northeast Web site.

What else should I look for?
In addition to energy performance, there are many other important operating and convenience features to consider when shopping for dehumidifiers 

  • Dehumidifier Basics
  • Capacity
  • Water Removal Options
  • Placement
  • Operating Temperature
  • Relative Humidity (RH) and Humidistats
  • Energy Factor Some Other Available Features
  • Other Ways to Reduce Home Humidity
  • Further Information and Product Reviews

Remember, saving energy prevents pollution. By choosing ENERGY STAR, you are helping prevent global warming and promote cleaner air without sacrificing the product quality and performance you expect.

Dehumidifiers Purchasing & Procurement Language

What ENERGY STAR Purchasing & Procurement resources does EPA offer? ENERGY STAR Purchasing & Procurement resources include lists of qualifying products, key product criteria, drop-in procurement language and savings calculators. Organizations can use these resources to facilitate the procurement of energy-efficient ENERGY STAR products and prevent greenhouse gas emissions.  Sample Procurement Language (Download Residential Appliances Procurement Language – MS Word | 42K) The following is an example of language you may wish to require in your upcoming contract: 

The Vendor Must:

Provide dehumidifiers that earn the ENERGY STAR and meet the ENERGY STAR specifications for energy efficiency as outlined below. The vendor is encouraged to visit www.energystar.gov for complete product specifications and an updated list of qualifying products. Table 1: Criteria for ENERGY STAR Qualified Standard Capacity Dehumidifiers

  • Product Capacity (L/day) Energy Factor Under Test Conditions (L/kWh) L/day < 10  ≥ 1.20 10 ≤ L/day < 25  ≥ 1.30 25 ≤ L/day ≤ 35  ≥ 1.50 Standard Capacity Dehumidifiers: Dehumidifiers with daily water-removal capacities up to 35 Liters (74.0 US pints) Table 2: Criteria for ENERGY STAR Qualified High Capacity Dehumidifiers
  • Product Capacity (L/day) Energy Factor Under Test Conditions (L/kWh) 36 ≤ L/day ≤ 57  ≥ 2.25 High Capacity Dehumidifiers: Dehumidifiers with daily water-removal capacities up to 57 Liters (120.5 US pints)

How Do I Know If I Need a Dehumidifier?

A dehumidifier is used to remove excess moisture from the air. Some of the most common indications that you may need a dehumidifier are:

  • Wet stains on walls and ceilings
  • Stuffy feeling in a room
  • Rotting wood
  • Condensation on windows
  • Musty smells
  • Allergies (if the air in your home is too moist, it will encourage the growth of bacteria and mold, common allergens)

Dehumidifiers Product List

List Current as of July 25, 2004

Manufacturing Company NameDehumidifier TypeBrand NameModel NameModel NumberProduct Capacity (liters/day)Product Capacity (pints/day)Energy Factor
Daewoo Electronics Co., Ltd.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDaewooDHC-250DHC-25012.3261.41
Daewoo Electronics Co., Ltd.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDaewooDHC-400DHC-40020421.63
Daewoo Electronics Co., Ltd.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDaewooDHC-600DHC-60028.5601.65
De’Longhi America, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDe’LonghiDDE 400DDE 4001939.961.35
De’Longhi America, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDe’LonghiDDE 40EDDE 40E20.4643.261.74
De’Longhi America, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDe’LonghiDDE 50EDDE 50E23.8501.31
De’Longhi America, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDe’LonghiDDE 65EDDE 65E32.468.51.63
De’Longhi America, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDe’LonghiDE 40 GMDE 40 GM1939.961.35
De’Longhi America, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDe’LonghiDE 40PDE 40P18.9401.35
De’Longhi America, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDe’LonghiDE 50 GMDE 50 GM22.647.781.35
De’Longhi America, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDe’LonghiDE 50PDE 50P22.647.81.4
De’Longhi America, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDe’LonghiDH 40PDH 40P18.9401.35
De’Longhi America, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierDe’LonghiDHE 90DHE 9018.438.91.38
Fedders CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierEmerson Quiet KoolDG50GADG50GA23.65501.4
Fedders CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierFeddersA7DH45B2AA7DH45B2A21.3451.64
Fedders CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierFeddersA7DH65B2AA7DH65B2A30.76651.77
Fedders CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierFeddersFDG50GAFDG50GA23.65501.4
Fedders CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierHampton BayHB50HB5023.65501.4
Fedders CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierMaytagM7DH45B2AM7DH45B2A21.3451.64
Fedders CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierMaytagM7DH65B2AM7DH65B2A30.76651.77
Friedrich Air Conditioning CompanyStandard Capacity DehumidifierFriedrichDehumidifierD4018.92401.36
Friedrich Air Conditioning CompanyStandard Capacity DehumidifierFriedrichDehumidifierD5023.65501.7
Friedrich Air Conditioning CompanyStandard Capacity DehumidifierFriedrichFriedrichD40A18.93401.49
Friedrich Air Conditioning CompanyStandard Capacity DehumidifierFriedrichFriedrichD50A23.66501.56
Friedrich Air Conditioning CompanyStandard Capacity DehumidifierFriedrichFriedrichD65A30.76651.54
Friedrich Air Conditioning CompanyStandard Capacity DehumidifierFriedrichFriedrichD65B30.76651.56
GE AppliancesStandard Capacity DehumidifierGEAHG40AHG40FCG119.5941.421.36
GE AppliancesStandard Capacity DehumidifierGEAHG40AHG40FDG119.5941.421.36
GE AppliancesStandard Capacity DehumidifierGEAHG40AHG40LBG118.93401.3
GE AppliancesStandard Capacity DehumidifierGEAHG40AHG40LCM11939.931.36
GE AppliancesStandard Capacity DehumidifierGEAHG40AHG40LDM11939.931.36
GE AppliancesStandard Capacity DehumidifierGEAHG50AHG50LBG123.66501.7
GE AppliancesStandard Capacity DehumidifierGEAHG50AHG50LCG124.5651.931.69
GE AppliancesStandard Capacity DehumidifierGEAHG50AHG50LDG12450.711.66
Haier AmericaStandard Capacity DehumidifierHaierHD30115.14321.34
Haier AmericaStandard Capacity DehumidifierHaierHD45121.3451.71
Haier AmericaStandard Capacity DehumidifierHaierHD451E21.3451.71
Haier AmericaStandard Capacity DehumidifierHaierHD60128.4601.88
Haier AmericaStandard Capacity DehumidifierHaierHD601E28.4601.88
Heat Controller Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierComfort-AireComfort-AireCAM-25x11.8251.3
Heat Controller Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierComfort-AireComfort-AireCAM-40x19401.5
Heat Controller Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierComfort-AireComfort-AireCAM-60x28.4601.5
Heat Controller Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierComfort-AireComfort-AireD-50123.6501.39
Heat Controller Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierComfort-AireComfort-AireHD-45121.3451.4
Heat Controller Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierComfort-AireComfort-AireHD-65130.8651.65
Heat Controller Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierComfort-AireBHD-501x23.6501.56
Heat Controller Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierComfort-AireBHD-651x30.8651.54
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH40DH4019401.49
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH4010EDH4010E18.92401.31
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH40EDH40E19401.49
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH50DH502450.51.56
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH50EDH50E2450.51.56
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH50ELDH50EL2450.51.56
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH65EDH65E31651.54
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH65ELDH65EL31651.54
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDHA4511MRDHA4511MR21.28451.58
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH400E19401.36
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH400M19401.36
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH404E19401.36
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarDH504EL24511.56
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierGoldStarGD40E19401.36
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierKenmore258402584018.92401.31
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierKenmore258412584118.92401.31
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierKenmore580.524502580.5245020021.29451.58
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierKenmore580.535013580.535013002450.51.56
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierKenmore580.535093580.535093002450.51.56
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierKenmore580.536502580.5365020030.75651.73
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierKenmore580.537013580.537013003369.51.56
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierKenmore580.543514001735.91.3
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierKenmore580.5450140024501.56
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierKenmore580.5470140033701.6
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierLGDHE-4031DHE-403119401.49
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierLGDHR-4030DHR-403019401.49
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierLGDHR-5030DHR-50302450.51.56
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierLGLD4019401.36
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierLGLD40E19401.36
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierLGLD50EL24511.56
LG Electronics, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierLGLD65EL31651.54
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaMDB-12AEMDB-12AE1225.371.45
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaMDB-19AEMDB-19AE1940.171.65
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaMDB-24AEMDB-24AE2450.741.75
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaDHC-25012.3261.41
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaDHC-40020421.63
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaDHC-60028.5601.65
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaMDB-25AEN312.3261.41
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaMDB-40AE20421.63
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaMDB-45AE20.8441.72
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaMDB-60AE28.5601.65
Midea Refrigeration Equipment Co., LtdStandard Capacity DehumidifierMideaMDB-65AE29.8631.8
Therma-Stor ProductsHigh Capacity DehumidifierTherma-StorSanta FeNULL47.9101.212.75
Therma-Stor ProductsHigh Capacity DehumidifierTherma-StorSanta Fe RxNULL40.7862.5
W.C. Wood Company, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierCrosleyMillenniumMCR40$18.9401.31
W.C. Wood Company, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierCrosleyMillenniumMCR40ES19401.31
W.C. Wood Company, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierCrosleyDCW40$18.9401.31
W.C. Wood Company, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierEdisonDHE40S18.9401.31
W.C. Wood Company, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierEdisonEMD40ES18.9401.31
W.C. Wood Company, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierEdisonEMD40S18.9401.31
W.C. Wood Company, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierWoodsWD20W9.3201.21
W.C. Wood Company, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierWoodsWD36G16.8361.31
W.C. Wood Company, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierWoodsWMD20W9.3201.21
W.C. Wood Company, Inc.Standard Capacity DehumidifierWoodsWMDE40W18.9401.31
Whirlpool CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierWhirlpoolBasement DehumidifierAD40USL18.9640.11.3
Whirlpool CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierWhirlpoolBasement DehumidifierAD50USL23.750.111.35
Whirlpool CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierWhirlpoolBasement DehumidifierAD65USL30.8165.141.85
Whirlpool CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierWhirlpoolStandard DehumidifierAD40DSL18.9640.091.3
Whirlpool CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierWhirlpoolStandard DehumidifierAD50DSL23.750.111.35
Whirlpool CorporationStandard Capacity DehumidifierWhirlpoolUltra Low Temp. Basement DehumidifierAD65USM30.81651.65

Dehumidifier Basics

Capacity Dehumidifier capacity is usually measured in pints per 24 hours and is determined by two factors: the size of the space that needs to be dehumidified and the conditions that exist in the space before dehumidification. Use the chart below to estimate the capacity you are looking for, or use the dehumidifier calculator  available on the ENERGY STAR Northeast Website. 

Condition without Dehumidification Area (Sq. Feet) 500 1,000 1,500 2,000 2,500

  • Moderately Damp (space feels damp and has musty odor only in humid weather) 10 14 18 22 26
  • Very Damp (space always feels damp and has musty odor. Damp spots show on walls and floor.) 12 17 22 27 32
  • Wet (space feels and smells wet. Walls or floor sweat, or seepage is present.) 14 20 26 32 38
  • Extremely Wet (laundry drying, wet floor, high load conditions.) 16 23 30 37 44 Source: Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM)

Water Removal Options Most dehumidifiers use a removable plastic bucket and warning lights to indicate when the bucket is full and needs to be emptied. There is typically an automatic shutoff when the bucket is full, so you won’t have to worry about the bucket overflowing. Most dehumidifiers come with a fitting that allows you to hook a hose directly to the bucket, which can then be directed into a floor drain or sump pump, so there is no need to empty it.

Placement Most dehumidifiers have top-mounted air discharge and can be placed against walls, but if you do not have top-mounted discharge, make sure the dehumidifier is located away from walls and furniture, so that air can circulate freely around the unit. This will result in better operation of the product.  Doors and windows to the space being dehumidified should be closed while the unit is running. This will ensure that the space is dehumidified as efficiently as possible. 

Locate away from sources of dust and dirt (like woodworking equipment), which can clog coils and grills. Observe all manufacturer warnings regarding electrical safety. In particular, never set up water drainage or disposal near electrical circuits or devices. Make sure the dehumidifier is connected to a properly grounded outlet. Keep drain hoses away from electrical cords and connections. If you are planning to use a hose to drain the dehumidifier’s water bucket, make sure the unit is located near enough to the floor drain or sump to avoid the need for a long and unwieldy hose. Don’t create a tripping hazard! Do not be alarmed if the air temperature directly around the unit is warmer than in surrounding areas. As a dehumidifier removes moisture from the air, it slightly warms the space around it.

Operating Temperature If the space being dehumidified has temperatures that typically fall below 65 degrees (F), you may want to consider buying a product that is specified for use at lower temperatures. Frost can form on the condensing coils if the air temperature drops below 65 degrees, and may negatively affect the performance of the product by causing the compressor to cycle on and off repeatedly without removing moisture from the air. If this happens, the unit should be switched off and allowed to defrost before it is turned back on.

Some dehumidifiers come with an antifrost sensor, which will automatically turn the unit off if the air temperature drops below a certain point. Qualified ENERGY STAR models are available that are rated for use at temperatures as low as 42 degrees.

Relative Humidity (RH) and Humidistats Humidity, the amount of moisture or water vapor in the air, is most often talked about in terms of Relative Humidity (RH). RH is the amount of water vapor actually present in the air compared to the greatest amount of water vapor the air can hold at that temperature. The optimum RH level for a building is generally considered to be between 30% and 50%. Anything above this range may promote bacteria growth. (In colder climates, during the heating season, humidity levels should be in the range of 30% to 40% RH to prevent window condensation.)  Many dehumidifiers include a built-in humidistat, a device that allows you to set the desired RH level that you would like for the room. Once the room reaches the desired RH level, the dehumidifier will cycle on and off automatically to maintain the level.

If your dehumidifier does not have a built-in humidistat, or has a humidistat that does not show RH levels purchase a hygrometer (a gauge that measures relative humidity) separately and hang it near the dehumidifier. The hygrometer will measure RH levels, and enable you to monitor when to turn the dehumidifier on and off.

Energy Factor The energy efficiency of dehumidifiers is measured by its energy factor, in liters of water removed per kilowatt-hour (kWh) of energy consumed or L/kWh. In general, a higher energy factor means a more efficient dehumidifier.

Energy factors can be found on the product list (Excel). 

Other Features

Other Available Features Various performance and convenience features are available on dehumidifiers, which may add to their purchase price. ENERGY STAR does not endorse any of the features below, but provides this information to help you select the best product for your individual needs.

A Timer will enable you to control the cycling of the dehumidifier, and set it to turn on at night. This may save you money on electricity bills, by taking advantage of off-peak electric rates.

A Washable Air Filter will allow you to easily remove and clean the filter, so that the dehumidifier does not become clogged with dust and dirt and operate less efficiently. Additionally, the unit’s coils should also be regularly vacuumed or dusted, so that dirt does not build up there, either.

A Pause button enables you to stop the dehumidifier for a pre-set short period of time if the sound from the dehumidifier interferes with a nearby activity.

A Built-in Condensate Pump, which takes water from the dehumidifier’s water storage bucket and pumps it directly out of a window or into a sink for draining can be a big time-saver. This feature means you would never have to worry about the dehumidifier turning off automatically due to a full bucket, nor would you have to manually empty the bucket. (The advantage of a condensate pump over a hose for drainage is that the hose would be reliant on gravity, so it would require careful placement to ensure proper drainage into a floor drain or sump.)

Multiple Fan Speeds will mean that you have the choice of running the dehumidifier at a higher speed, which is generally more efficient or a lower speed, which is quieter. If you plan to move your dehumidifier around, look for one with an easy-to-use carrying handle and/or wheels. This will make transportation of the unit a lot easier!

Other Ways to Reduce Home Humidity

Reducing sources of moisture can reduce your need for dehumidification. • Improving the drainage around the foundation of your home may result in decreased humidity in your basement. Some ways to improve drainage are:

  • Extend downspouts from your gutters away from the foundation of your home
  • Keep gutters and downspouts clear and open
  • Ensure that the soil slopes away from your foundation, to avoid pooling of water around your home
  • Avoid over-watering of foundation plantings
  • Ensure that clothes dryers are properly vented to the outdoors. If you do not use a clothes dryer, dry your clothes outdoors as opposed to hanging them inside for drying.
  • Use vent fans in bathrooms and kitchens to remove humidity at the source.
  • Repair leaking outdoor faucets. Not only will this help reduce humidity, but it will also save you money on your water bills!
  • If your home uses central air conditioning, consider installing an A/C vent in the humid space in your home and take advantage of the dehumidifying capabilities of your A/C system. This will also help with air circulation, improving airflow between humid parts of your home and drier parts.

Partner Information

The ENERGY STAR Partner Information database provides short descriptions of partner organizations and summaries of their ENERGY STAR activities. Such information can help partners coordinate activities, brainstorm new promotional strategies, and share ideas.

Users can search for profiles of

  • utility, government, and other energy efficiency group partners or
  • retailer and manufacturer partners

Note: OPIE currently may not reflect the broad range of ENERGY STAR promotional activities that partners undertake. To list other such activities, please contact us.

CFL Partners

Current ENERGY STAR CFL Partners

This list was last updated Friday, June 01, 2001.

Manufacturers Disclaimer: The following links are to locations outside of the ENERGY STAR Web Site . ENERGY STAR does not maintain these pages and is not responsible for their content. These links are provided as a service to the user. ENERGY STAR does not endorse the materials, products, companies or opinions included therein.
  • AM Conservation Group, Inc.
  • American Lighting
  • American Power Products
  • Angelo Brothers Company
  • Auto Cell Electronics
  • Bicad, Inc.
  • Bulbrite Industries
  • CAEMCO
  • China American Manufacturing & Trading Co.
  • Corso Ltd.
  • Custom Distributors
  • DM Technology and Energy
  • Feit Electric
  • Fujian Joinluck Electronic Enterprise Co., Ltd.
  • GE Lighting
  • GEI Inc.
  • Globe Electric Inc.
  • Greenlite Lighting Corporation
  • Gulf Advanced Lighting
  • Hamilton Technologies Corporation
  • Hardin Geotechnologies
  • Harmony Lighting
  • JKRL USA
  • Kai Wo (Asia) HK Ltd
  • L’image Home Products
  • Link USA International, Inc.
  • Luminators, Inc.
  • Luminex Lighting
  • Luxlite-Primex Industries Ltd.
  • MaxLite
  • Nedco International
  • Ningbo Ledeshi Electrical Equipment Co., Ltd. China
  • Osram Sylvania Inc.
  • Panasonic
  • Philips Lighting Company
  • Planet Mirth, Inc.
  • Remcorp
  • REXEL Consolidated
  • Satco
  • Shenzhen Jiashi Electronics Co., Ltd.
  • Sunion Products Ltd.
  • Sunpark Electronics Corporation
  • Sunrise Lighting
  • Surya Roshni Inc.
  • Techniart, Inc.
  • Technical Consumer Products, Inc.
  • Toshiba Lighting America, Inc.
  • Tospo Lighting
  • Triple Bright International
  • US Energy Technologies, Inc.
  • Uspar Enterprises
  • Verilux, Inc.
  • Xiamen Topstar Lighting Co., Ltd.

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