The National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) Board of Directors provided
detailed direction to its Long Term Energy Performance (LTEP) and Annual Energy
Performance (AEP) Subcommittee and Task Group leaders at a recent working meeting
in Reston, Va.
When discussing long-term energy performance's role within NFRC, the Board
directed the LTEP Subcommittee to revisit its scope and identify a series of questions
that may result in the development of an educational effort providing consumers
with variables that may impact fenestration energy performance over time. "As
we work to determine whether we can develop an LTEP rating that meets NFRC's high
standard for integrity, we'd like to help consumers understand what can potentially
affect the energy performance of windows over time; and what alternative programs
or additional information is available.," said Jim Benney, NFRC executive
Marvin Stover, NFRC chair, summarized the Board's direction to the AEP Subcommittee
by saying that, "Developing an annual energy performance rating that will
be useful, accurate, meaningful, and easy to understand could be very difficult,
but homeowners, builders and designers alike would benefit from an annual energy
performance rating. As an organization that operates in the public interest, we
should pursue this," he added.
The Board suggested that the AEP Subcommittee first develop a calculation procedure
known as "NFRC 901" and then a rating following Board review. They also
required that any procedure brought forward from the membership must:
- Provide for variability. The final product must be a range and may include
other considerations like climate zones, ENERGY STAR, or code maps.
- Provide for a minimum of at least two ratings it will include heating and cooling
and might also reflect climate zones or other factors.
- Include user-specific variable behavioral inputs/modifications (i.e., thermostat
set points, shading, and orientation).
The Board also provided guidance regarding approval requirements. Specifically:
- Any assumptions must be supported by research and technically sound.
- The intended audience is the consumer and/or builders in both new and existing
markets. Any rating procedure is not intended for code use.
- The rating program that is developed for AEP must be administrable by NFRC within
fiscally responsible parameters and must be consistent with NFRC's 501(c) (3)
tax exempt status. NFRC's intellectual property rights in any proprietary product
produced by NFRC for AEP must be protected.
Work will continue on both of these projects before the next member meeting
in late November. To learn more about NFRC's various committees, visit www.nfrc.org/committeesinfo.aspx.