Covered Product Category: Refrigerated Beverage Vending Machines

ENERGY STAR Qualified Products

Updated March 2013

FEMP provides acquisition guidance and Federal efficiency requirements across a variety of product categories, including refrigerated beverage vending machines, which are covered by the ENERGY STAR® program. Federal laws and executive orders mandate that agencies meet these efficiency requirements in all procurement and acquisition actions that are not specifically exempted by law.

Manufacturers display the ENERGY STAR label on complying models. For a model not displaying this label, check the qualified products list maintained on the ENERGY STAR website.

This product category overview covers the following:

Meeting Energy Efficiency Requirements for Refrigerated Beverage Vending Machines

For the most up-to-date efficiency levels for this product category, visit the ENERGY STAR Product Specifications website. For more information, or for a point of contact, visit the Resources for Energy-Efficient Products page.

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Reducing Energy Costs: Save Up to $105 When You Buy ENERGY STAR Vending Machines

FEMP has calculated1 that the required ENERGY STAR–qualified product is cost-effective if priced no more than $75 above the less efficient alternative. The most efficient level saves the average user more money: $105. The complete cost-effectiveness example and associated assumptions are provided in table 1.

Table 1. Lifetime Savings for Efficient Refrigerated Beverage Vending Machinesa
  ENERGY STAR Best Availableb ENERGY STAR Requiredc Less Efficientd
Maximum Daily Energy Consumption (kWh) 4.22 4.42 4.91
Annual Energy Use (kWh/year) 1,540 1,613 1,792
Annual Energy Cost $139 $145 $161
Lifetime Energy Cost $630 $660 $735
Lifetime Energy Cost Savings $105 $75 ======

a More-efficient products may have been introduced to the market since this information was published.
b The efficiency of the Best Available models was obtained from the ENERGY STAR List of Qualified Products.
c Federal purchases must be of ENERGY STAR–qualified products that meet or exceed ENERGY STAR efficiency levels.
d The Less Efficient column represents the lowest efficiency products currently available on the market.

ENERGY STAR Is Cost-Effective

An efficient product is cost-effective when the lifetime energy savings (from avoided energy costs over the life of the product, discounted to present value) exceed the additional upfront cost (if any) compared to a less efficient option. ENERGY STAR and FEMP consider upfront costs and lifetime energy savings when setting required efficiency levels so that Federal purchasers can assume that ENERGY STAR–qualified and products meeting FEMP-designated efficiency requirements are life cycle cost-effective. 


Products meeting FEMP-designated efficiency requirements or ENERGY STAR performance specifications may not be life cycle cost-effective in certain low-use applications, such as when a device is being purchased for backup purposes and will remain in off mode for most of its useful life. For most other average or high-use applications, purchasers will find that energy-efficient products have the lowest life cycle cost.

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Buying Energy-Efficient Refrigerated Beverage Vending Machines

This product category includes new and remanufactured indoor (i.e., glass front) and indoor/outdoor (i.e., solid front) refrigerated beverage vending machines. These products are designed to dispense canned, bottled, and other sealed beverage containers in exchange for consumer payment. The beverages are served chilled. Vending machines designed to dispense non-refrigerated products, such as potato chips or candy, either exclusively or in addition to refrigerated beverages (i.e., combination machines), are excluded.

Refrigerated beverage vending machines are common in all types of Federal facilities; however, refrigerated beverage vending machines are typically not purchased by Federal agencies. Instead, they are typically part of a contractual arrangement with beverage distributors in which the vending machines are placed in Federal facilities at no charge. In return, the agencies provide space and the electrical power necessary to operate the vending machines. In some cases, the agency may receive a portion of the revenue from the beverage sales. Agencies must request that beverage vending machines provided through these contracts meet the current ENERGY STAR program requirements for this product category.

In cases where agencies do buy energy-efficient refrigerated beverage vending machines, the Federal supply source for these products are the General Services Administration (GSA) and Defense Logistics Agency (DLA). GSA sells beverage vending machines through its Multiple Awards Schedule program and online shopping network, GSA Advantage! DLA sells them through its online supply network, DOD EMALL. Products sold through DLA are codified with 13-digit National Stock Numbers (NSN) and, in some cases, a two-letter Environmental Attribute Code (ENAC). When buying beverage vending machines through DLA sources, look for models with the ENAC "CR" attached to the end of the NSN.

These requirements apply to all forms of procurement, including guide and project specifications; construction, renovation, repair, energy service, and operation and maintenance (O&M) contracts; lease agreements; and solicitations for offers. Energy performance requirements should be included in all evaluations of solicitation responses. Buyers shall insert the standard clause from FAR section 52.223-15 into contracts and solicitations that deliver, acquire, furnish, or specify energy-consuming products for use in Federal facilities. Agencies can claim an exception to these requirements through a written finding that no ENERGY STAR–qualified or FEMP-designated product is life cycle cost-effective for a specific application.

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Buyer Tips: Choosing Efficient Products

Refrigerated beverage vending machines come in many different sizes or capacities, typically stated in the number of cans or bottles. Larger machines use more energy and cost more to operate. Agencies should require the vendors to properly size the beverage vending machines placed in their facilities in order to avoid excessive energy use and its related cost.

Both new and remanufactured machines are eligible for ENERGY STAR recognition. When replacing refrigerated beverage vending machines, agencies should first check with their distributor to see if there are retrofit kits available that can be combined with existing models to meet ENERGY STAR performance requirements. ENERGY STAR–qualified remanufactured machine-component combinations are listed on the ENERGY STAR website.

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User Tips: Using Products More Efficiently

ENERGY STAR–qualified refrigerated beverage vending machines are equipped with controls or software that put the lighting and/or refrigeration systems into a low power state at night, on weekends, or other periods of prolonged inactivity. Agency staff should request that the vendor activate the low power state most advantageous for their facility and periodically check that it is functioning properly (e.g., lights are turned off late at night or on weekends).

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Finding More Information

The following resource provides additional information surrounding the purchase of efficient products:

For more information, including publications, training, related links, and points of contact, visit the Resources for Energy-Efficient Products page. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory provided supporting analysis for this acquisition guidance.

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1 Based on the following assumptions: Assumes the refrigerated beverage vending machine is an indoor/outdoor (i.e., closed front), 24 cubic foot capacity (650 cans) refrigerated beverage vending machine operating 24 hours per day, 365 days per year, which is typical in Federal facilities]. The performance of the less efficient model is assumed to just meet Federal Appliance Standards, while that of the required model meets the current ENERGY STAR qualification criteria. The most efficient model is from the ENERGY STAR List of Qualified Products (posted March 2013).

The maximum daily energy consumption (MDEC) is tested in accordance with 10 CFR Part 431 Subpart Q and 10 CFR Part 431.294. The assumed rate of electricity is $0.09 per kWh, the average at U.S. Federal facilities. Lifetime energy cost is the sum of the discounted valued of annual energy cost with an assumed beverage vending machine life of 5 years. Future electricity prices and a 3% discount rate are from "Energy Price Indices and Discount Factors for Life-Cycle Cost Analysis - 2012: Annual Supplement to NIST Handbook 135 and NBS Special Publication 709." (NISTIR 85-3273-27).