Motor efficiency requirements come December 2010. Are you ready?

Dec. 19, 2010, is the next major compliance deadline for the U.S. Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA). Baldor Electric explains what that means for machine builders and end users.


The next major compliance deadline for the U.S. Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) is Dec. 19, 2010. Motors made prior to the Dec. 19 EISA deadline can still be sold and used in customer applications after the law goes into effect. However, motors manufactured for use in the U.S. or entering, the U.S. as a component of another piece of equipment must comply with the new requirements as of that date.

David Steen, Baldor

Motors affected by EISA, according to Baldor, include 1 hp to 500 hp general purpose, three-phase ac motors. Also, certain motors, previously exempt, are now included. Early in 2009, Baldor shared information with customers about the changes, explaining that the improvements mean that motors cost less to operate, run cooler, and last longer.

Baldor Electric Co., manufacturer of motors and generators, has been upgrading its offerings to comply with the EISA requirements for U.S. motor efficiency. David E. Steen, product manager for AC motors, says machine builders and other original equipment manufacturers need to do the following:
1. Adapt product designs appropriately for use with high-efficiency motors, which can be physically larger, depending on the motor. Check with suppliers, as some have chosen not to offer certain motors rather than retool to meet the new requirements.
2. Educate customers about the fact that higher-efficiency motors will cost 12-30% more initially but will lower overall ownership cost because of lower electricity usage over time. Seek out and plan for the new pricing information.
3. Get in line in a big hurry if systems designed with the new motors require recertification through listing agencies such as UL or CSA because of use of a different motor or because machine design needs to change to fit the more efficient (and slightly larger) motor.
General-purpose rated (Subtype I) motors from 1-200 hp were previously covered under the Energy Policy Act (EPAct) of 1992. That law specifies nominal full load efficiency level based on NEMA Premium efficiency motors. (See NEMA MG 1, Table 12-12.) Motors manufactured after Dec. 19 that are 230 or 460 V (575 V for Canada) and under EPAct must meet or exceed those efficiency levels. EISA adds new motors to the requirements. General purpose electric motors (Subtype II) not previously covered under EPAct will be covered by energy efficient requirements of NEMA MG1, table 12-11.
General purpose electric motors (Subtype II) include design elements of a general purpose electric motor (Subtype I) that are configured as:
• U-Frame motor;
• Design C motor;
• Close-coupled pump motor;
• Footless motor;
• Vertical solid shaft normal thrust motor (as tested in a horizontal configuration);
• 8-pole motor (900 rpm);
• A poly-phase motor with voltage not more than 600 V (other than 230 or 460 V); and
• 201-500 hp motors not previously covered by EPAct need to comply with efficiencies defined in NEMA MG 1, Table 12-11.
George P. Weihrauch, Baldor product manager for AC motors, says EISA has fewer loopholes than EPAct given wording that focuses more on how a motor operates than on its nameplate. Motors not covered are: Design D with high slip, adjustable speed with optimized windings, customized OEM mounting, intermittent duty, integral with gearing or brake where motor cannot be used separately, submersible motors, single-phase motors, dc motors, two-digit frames (48-56), multi-speed motors, medium-voltage motors (601-13,000 V), and TENV and TEAO enclosures.
Baldor Super-E NEMA Premium efficient motors already comply with the general-purpose 1-200 hp motor requirement, says Weihrauch. Some Baldor Standard-E designs comply, and efficiencies of some other Baldor motor designs are increasing to comply.
For Baldor, the changes are translating into more business, suggests Randy Breaux, vice president of marketing. Expected sales growth for high-efficiency motors is in the 25-35% range this year, compared to about 5% in 2009, he said.

For more motor efficiency information, see:
NEMA Premium efficiency motor rebate program in U.S. energy bill;
HE motors: Prepare for high-efficiency mandates;
European motor efficiency developments;
• More EISA questions? A Baldor PDF has answers;
Engineers: Restart your motor specifications

About Baldor
Baldor Electric Company (NYSE: BEZ) is an electrical equipment manufacturing company that designs, manufactures and markets electrical products, primarily energy-efficient electric motors and adjustable speed drives. Product lines include industrial electric motors, power transmission products, drives and generators. It has operations in more than 70 countries. Baldor has 50 sales / warehouses in North America and 26 offices globally. There are 26 company manufacturing plants in US, Canada, U.K., Mexico and China.

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