What is Title 20?

Title 20 Appliance Efficiency Regulations are part of the California Code of Regulations. The Title 20 Appliance Efficiency Regulations are in Chapter 4, Article 4 of California’s overall Title 20 Public Utilities and Energy regulations, but they are often just referred to as Title 20. Title 20 includes federal and state minimum efficiency requirements for energy and water use in regulated appliances. Federal appliance efficiency standards are mandatory minimums nationwide and cannot be superseded by state regulations, but states can set their own minimum efficiencies for appliances that the federal government does not regulate.

The California Energy Commission (CEC) maintains a searchable public database of certified equipment, the Modernized Appliance Efficiency Database System (MAEDbS), to help building professionals and the general public identify and install energy and water efficient products. Everyone in the sales chain – including manufacturers, distributors, retailers, contractors and importers – is responsible for either ensuring regulated products are listed in the MAEDbS or that only regulated products are offered for sale. To comply with the regulations, manufacturers must ensure they:

  1. Design products according to the energy and performance requirements
  2. Test products according to required test methods and with a CEC-approved test lab
  3. Certify products to the MAEDbS on or after the effective date
  4. Permanently mark products with the required identifying and energy- or water-consumption information
Retailers, distributors, importers, contractors and designers must use the MAEDbS to verify that they are only selling compliant products. By verifying that all Title 20-regulated products are compliant, retailers can avoid enforcement fines of up to $2,500 per unit sold and help ensure their customers have efficient appliances that are affordable, reliable, and environmentally friendly.

Learn more about the MAEDbS and how to use it with the Energy Code Ace Title 20 On-Demand Video Training.

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This program is funded by California utility customers and administered by Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E), San Diego Gas & Electric Company (SDG&E®), and Southern California Edison Company (SCE) under the auspices of the California Public Utilities Commission.

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