Appliance Efficiency Program Background

Since the 1970s, the California Energy Commission has had the responsibility to establish and enforce energy efficiency standards for buildings and appliances. The Energy Commission's Appliance Efficiency Regulations first took effect in late 1977, and include the requirement that a regulated appliance may not be sold or offered for sale in California unless it is certified to be in compliance with the standards.

The Energy Commission has been collecting and publishing this appliance efficiency data continuously since 1978. Over time, these responsibilities have grown to encompass a great many appliance types and include both water and energy efficiency.

For an appliance to be sold or offered for sale in California it must be certified to the Energy Commission which then allows it to appear on the publicly accessible "Appliance Efficiency Database." Certifying an appliance involves testing an appliance's performance and submitting the data collected to the Energy Commission's Appliance Efficiency Program. A regulated appliance that is not certified cannot be legally sold or offered for sale in the state of California. Certification to the Energy Commission is completed by manufacturers of regulated devices. Certification includes a declaration of compliance, executed under penalty of perjury of the laws of California, that the regulated device meets the requirements of the Standards. Well-designed mandatory energy efficiency standards transform markets by removing inefficient products, with the intent of increasing the overall economic welfare of most consumers without seriously limiting their choice of products.

Contact Us

Questions about how to use the Modernized Appliance Efficiency Database System (MAEDBS) can be directed to or to the Appliances Hotline, toll free at (888) 838-1467 or outside California (916) 651-7100.

Questions about the Title 20 Program, including assistance with technical matters, including device determinations, can be directed to .