9.2       What’s New in the 2016 Energy Standards

The 2016 Energy Standards include new mandatory measures and different compliance requirements for additions and alterations. This section highlights the key changes from the 2013 Energy Standards.

9.2.1          Mandatory Measures in Additions and Alterations      Envelope

A.   Ceiling and Rafter Roof: For additions of 700 ft2 or less, insulation shall be installed between wood-framing members with insulation R-value of R-22 or a weighted average U-factor not exceeding U-0.043. Altered roofs limited by space may have only R-19 or 0.054 weighted average U-factor. Depending on the attic ventilation, insulation shall be installed either:

1.    At the ceiling level for a ventilated attic, or

2.    At the ceiling or roof level for an unvented attic.

B.   The roofs and ceilings of additions that are 700 ft² or less shall meet the mandatory insulation requirement of §150.0(a). Additions that are greater than 700 ft2 must comply with prescriptive ceiling and roof insulation (§150.1(c)1)      HVAC and Water Heating

Liquid line filter dryers are required for new HVAC systems or replaced condensers when provided by the manufacturer of the system.      Ducts and Air Distribution Systems

Installation of all new (or full replacement) duct systems:

1.    Higher duct insulation levels for ducts located in unconditioned space resulting in either R-6 or R-8 dependent on climate zone §150.2(b)1D.

2.    New target leakage level of 5 percent for entirely new or complete replacement duct systems §150.2(b)1D.      Lighting

The 2016 Energy Standards have simplified the residential lighting requirements with the following important changes:

1.    All installed luminaires must be high-efficacy light sources as specified in Table 150.0-A of the Energy Standards. This change eliminates the previously required kitchen wattage calculation.

2.    The definition of high-efficacy lighting has been expanded to include luminaires (including screw-based luminaires) that are installed with light sources or lamps that meet the requirements of JA8. This allows for installation of efficient lamps to be used for compliance with §150.0(k);).

3.    The only place screw-based luminaires cannot be used is for recessed downlights in ceilings. Recessed downlights are required to contain JA8-compliant light sources that also meet elevated temperature requirements.

More details of the 2016 Energy Standards residential lighting requirements can be found in Chapter 6.

9.2.2          Prescriptive Additions

1.    All new size (conditioned floor area) categories and new special requirements for prescriptive additions as outlined in this section and Tables 9-3A through 9-3E.


2.    Extensions of existing wood-framed walls may retain the dimensions of the wall being extended. For example, continuous insulation would not be required for an extension if the existing wall did not already have continuous insulation. Wall extensions shall be insulated with cavity insulation of R-15 in 2x4 framing and R-19 in 2x6 framing.

9.2.3          Prescriptive Alterations

New requirements for duct insulation apply when the new ducts are located in unconditioned spaces.

See Table 9-4 in this chapter for a summary of how the compliance software sets the standard design (energy budget) for alterations