Covered Product Category: Imaging Equipment

Did you know?
Manufacturers ship ENERGY STAR–qualified products with energy-saving power management features enabled. These features will substantially reduce energy use and related operating cost. Work with your IT staff to ensure these features are not overridden, or to re-enable them if they already have been.

ENERGY STAR Qualified Products

Updated August 2012

FEMP provides acquisition guidance and Federal efficiency requirements across a variety of product categories, including imaging equipment, which is 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.

This acquisition guidance and associated ENERGY STAR product specifications apply to copiers, printers, digital duplicators, scanners, fax machines, multifunction (also known as "all-in-one") devices, and mailing machines. Products designed to operate on three-phase power are not covered.

This product category overview covers the following:

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Meeting Energy Efficiency Requirements for Imaging Equipment

Buy products that are found in both the EPEAT registry and the ENERGY STAR's qualified products list. Often the ENERGY STAR label will be prominently displayed in supplier catalogs and on packaging, but if you do not see a label, refer to ENERGY STAR's qualified products list. Find more information about Federal Requirements and Acquisition Guidance for Low Standby Power Products, or contact the FEMP point of contact listed at the bottom of this page.

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Reducing Energy Costs: Save Up To $228 When You Buy ENERGY STAR–Qualified Products

FEMP has calculated that the required ENERGY STAR-qualified laser printer is cost-effective if priced no more than $228 above the less efficient alternative. The cost-effectiveness example and associated assumptions for this and other ENERGY STAR imaging equipment are provided in tables 1 through 4.

Table 1. Lifetime Savings for an Efficient Laser Printera
Performance ENERGY STAR efficiency level Less Efficientb
Annual Energy Use 73 kWh/year 645 kWh/year
Annual Energy Cost $7 $58
Lifetime Energy Cost (5 years) $29 $257
Lifetime Energy Cost Savings $228 ======

Table 2. Lifetime Savings for an Efficient Copiera
Performance ENERGY STAR efficiency level Less Efficientb
Annual Energy Use 170 kWh/year 280 kWh/year
Annual Energy Cost $15 $25
Lifetime Energy Cost (6 years) $80 $132
Lifetime Energy Cost Savings $52 ======

Table 3. Lifetime Savings for an Efficient Multifunction Devicea
Performance ENERGY STAR efficiency level Less Efficientb
Annual Energy Use 171 kWh/year 335 kWh/year
Annual Energy Cost $15 $30
Lifetime Energy Cost (6 years) $80 $158
Lifetime Energy Cost Savings $78 ======

Table 4. Lifetime Savings for an Efficient Fax Machinea
Performance ENERGY STAR efficiency level Less Efficientb
Annual Energy Use 78 kWh/year 156 kWh/year
Annual Energy Cost $7 $14
Lifetime Energy Cost (4 years) $25 $51
Lifetime Energy Cost Savings $26 ======

a Federal purchases must be of ENERGY STAR–qualified products that meet or exceed ENERGY STAR efficiency levels.
b The Less Efficient column represents low-efficiency imaging equipment used in commercial offices.

Determining When ENERGY STAR Is Cost-Effective

An efficient product is cost-effective when the discounted savings (from avoided energy costs over the life of the product) exceed the additional upfront cost (if any) compared to a less efficient option. ENERGY STAR considers upfront costs and lifetime energy savings when setting required efficiency levels. Federal purchasers can assume that ENERGY STAR–qualified products are life cycle cost-effective; however, users wishing to determine cost-effectiveness for their application may do so using the cost-effectiveness examples or the ENERGY STAR office equipment cost calculators.

Exceptions

ENERGY STAR–qualified products 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 off for most of its useful life. For most applications, purchasers will find that energy-efficient products have the lowest life cycle cost.

Agencies may claim an exception to these purchasing requirements through a written finding that no ENERGY STAR–qualified product is available to meet functional requirements, or that no ENERGY STAR–qualified product is life cycle cost-effective for the specific application. Additional information on Federal requirements is available.

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Complying with Contracting Requirements

These requirements apply to all forms of procurement, including project specifications; renovation, repair, maintenance, and energy service contracts; lease agreements; acquisitions made using purchase cards; and solicitations for offers. Energy efficiency requirements should be included in both the evaluation criteria of solicitations and the evaluations of solicitation responses.

Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Part 23.206 requires Federal agencies to insert the clause at FAR section 52.223-15 into solicitations and contracts that deliver, acquire, furnish, or specify energy-consuming products. FEMP recommends that agencies incorporate efficiency requirements into both the technical specification and evaluation sections of solicitations.

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Buyer Tips: Choosing Efficient Products

The most effective way to save energy and reduce costs in printers and copiers is to print in duplex mode (i.e., print on both sides of the paper). Look for a model with duplex speed at least 80% as fast as one-sided copying. Ask your dealer or compare product reviews provided by independent, ISO-certified sources.

Many products with scanning functions offer duplex scanning. This avoids the extra handling needed to scan a two-sided document. Consider purchasing imaging equipment, particularly fax machines, with this duplex scanning feature.

Multifunction equipment that combines printing, copying, and scanning along with fax capabilities may be an attractive option, especially for small offices and home use where space is limited. However, the fax function often requires that the entire unit remain ready to receive a fax at all times. This may increase power consumption significantly. Many multifunction models with fax capability have higher standby power levels than a fax-only machine. In these situations, dedicated low power fax machines should be considered.

Imaging equipment products are covered by purchasing requirements mandating low standby power. Refer to the Low Standby Product List for information about products that meet low standby power requirements.

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User Tips: Using Products More Efficiently

Make sure the power management features are enabled in all imaging equipment at your facility. Because more energy is used to make paper than to print on it, make sure the duplexing feature is enabled for all imaging equipment with this function. It is important to inform users about the duplex setting, including benefits from reducing paper use. Show users how to manually select one-sided printing or copying if needed for a specific job. Make or print fewer copies whenever possible by using email, posting documents on the Web, circulating a single copy, and using a cover sheet only when necessary. For originals with large print, use 2:1 image reduction to save paper.

With the exception of devices with a fax-receiving function, manually turn off all imaging equipment at night, on weekends, and on holidays. This saves energy and will not shorten the life of these products.

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Finding More Information

The following resources provide additional information about the purchase of efficient products:

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