WASHINGTON, DC – Today, the Department of Energy announced that it is requiring AeroSys, Inc. to stop distributing two product models – one air conditioner and one heat pump – that DOE testing found to consume more energy than allowed under federal efficiency standards. This is the latest step in the Department’s investigation into whether AeroSys has been selling products in the U.S. that violate minimum appliance efficiency standards. This is the first time that the Department of Energy has told a company or manufacturer that it must halt the distribution of products that fail to meet minimum conservation standards.
“This action is designed to send a clear message to all manufacturers – this Administration takes energy efficiency seriously and we will act aggressively to remove any products from the market that are violating national appliance standards,” said DOE General Counsel Scott Blake Harris. “We will continue to take the steps necessary to protect American consumers and the environment from wasteful and inefficient appliances.”
The Department subpoenaed AeroSys’s data on the energy use for certain heat pumps and air conditioners last year, before beginning independent testing on 7 product models in the fall (6 air conditioner models and one heat pump).
Based on the test data, DOE has determined that the AeroSys heat pump (THHP-24T*) and one of the air conditioners (THDC-30T*) consume more energy than allowed under federal law, while another air conditioner (THDC-24T*) was shown to meet the federal standards. The non-compliant air conditioner fell below the minimum standard of 10.9 SEER by about 8 percent, while the heat pump fell below by about 4 percent. Testing is continuing on 4 additional air conditioner models (THDC-18R*, THDC-18S*, THDC-18T* and THDC-24S*) and will be complete over the next month. Once testing is complete, DOE will determine the compliance of the remaining 4 models and take additional actions as appropriate.
Last week DOE’s Office of the General Counsel issued a Notice of Noncompliance to AeroSys, Inc., which requires the manufacturer to respond to DOE within 15 days, detailing the steps they will take to remove the two noncompliant models from commerce in the U.S. The company is also required to provide written notification to all businesses where the products were distributed, alerting them that the products consume more energy than allowed by law. If the company fails to respond or effectively explain how these products will be removed from the market, the Department of Energy will seek a judicial order to prevent their sale.