Heating, Ventilation and Air conditioning (HVAC) Building controls are used to control the environmental conditions (i.e. temperature, ventilation rate and/or air quality) in individual zones (i.e. rooms or areas) within a building. They can be programmed to maintain these environmental conditions within pre-set limits in a manner that reflects occupation schedules, occupation status and/or level of activity in the zone, whilst also taking account of environmental conditions, and the specific operating requirements of the zone. These criteria are designed in order for controllers to be capable of functioning in an EN 15232 class A system.
A wide range of HVAC Building controls is available. The Energy Technology List (ETL) Scheme aims to encourage the purchase of products that automatically minimise the energy consumption of building heating, cooling, ventilation, or air conditioning equipment, and associated distribution systems.
Some products are also able to control lighting, electrical appliances and window shading equipment in a zone in line with its occupation schedule/status. For these applications, the respective criteria to be met are described in Table 1.8.
The Scheme covers three categories of products:
- ‘Add-on’ control modules that are not self-contained units but are designed to incorporate zone control facilities into HVAC control units or equipment.
- Control units not enabled to communicate with 3rd party devices
- Control units enabled to communicate with 3rd party devices
To be eligible for inclusion on the ETL, products shall meet the definitions and eligibility requirements as set out below.
HVAC Building controls are products that are designed and programmed to automatically control in an energy efficient manner, the amount of heating, cooling, ventilation or air conditioning that is applied to individual rooms or defined areas within a building, known as “zones”.
“HVAC” is the collective term used to refer to the combination of heating, cooling, ventilation, or air conditioning that is specifically employed within a particular building.
1.3.1 Eligibility requirements
To be eligible, products shall:
- Incorporate a microprocessor-based controller that is programmed (as factory produced, tailored to customer building or reprogrammed during an installation upgrade) to automatically control the individual environmental conditions in one or more zones within a building, in an energy efficient manner that reflects the occupation status or the level of activity in each zone.
Controllers operating under zone occupation schedules are authorised, under the provision that they are also capable of control under occupation status or activity level.
- Be able to automatically control the operation of the equipment:
a) Heating and/or cooling the zones being controlled; and/or:
b) Ventilating and/or air quality the zones being controlled.
- Be designed to have at least two of the following zone operating modes:
a) A “normal/comfort” operating mode where zone environmental conditions are maintained within predefined levels consistent with zone occupation or a high level of activity in the zone.
b) An “economy/standby” mode where zone environmental conditions are maintained at reduced levels to reflect, for example, the fact that the zone is unoccupied, or a reduced level of activity in the zone or
c) A “off” mode where the zone heating, cooling, ventilation and air-conditioning is switched off or operated solely for fabric, frost and equipment protection.
- Incorporate an anti-tampering mechanism that prevents the product’s control strategy and configuration settings from being modified, and automatic control from being disabled, except during commissioning, maintenance or testing.
- Conform with the requirements of The Electromagnetic Compatibility Regulations 2016, or have an appropriate Conformity Assessment mark.
- Make any feature allowing for building users to adjust temperature and/or ventilation settings in their zone to be only on a temporary basis. Products shall automatically reset user adjustments, either after a pre-defined time interval (which may be fixed or defined by the building manager) or at the next scheduled switching time.
- Adhere to requirements detailed in Table 1.8 when controlling other types of equipment. If the product is not detailed in Table 1.8, then the control shall be based on status or levels of activity.
- For control valves, actuators and dampers with integrated controls (i.e. factory assembled), these products shall be eligible under the HVAC Building Controls criteria.
- For motors, pumps, fans and variable speed drives, controllers which are integrated (i.e. factory assembled) into these products shall also meet the relevant ETL criteria for the associated product. Where ETL criteria for the associated product does not exist, the integrated controller shall not be eligible for the ETL. This criterion does not apply for fans and pumps incorporated solely for the purpose of cooling the controller.
- Comply with the relevant requirements for particular type of zone control and type of HVAC plant controlled, as set out in Table 1.1 to Table 1.7 below, for products that:
a) Control zone temperature (see Table 1.1).
b) Control zone ventilation rate or air condition (see Table 1.2).
c) Control based on zone occupation status or level of activity (see Table 1.3).
d) Control based on zone occupation schedules (see Table 1.4).
e) Control centralised HVAC plant (see Table 1.5).
f) Control wet heating systems (see Table 1.6).
g) Controls for workstation ventilation (see Table 1.7).
Table 1.1 Requirements for control zone temperature
|Control of zone temperature|
All products that are designed to control zone temperature shall:
Table 1.2 Requirements for control zone ventilation rates or air quality
|Control of zone ventilation rates or air quality|
|All products that are designed to control zone ventilation rate or air quality shall:
Table 1.3 Requirements for control based on zone occupation status or level of activity
|Control based on zone occupation status or level of activity|
|All products that are designed to control zones based on occupation status shall:
Table 1.4 Requirements for control based on zone occupation schedules
|Control based on zone occupation schedules|
|All products that include a control zones based on occupation schedules shall:
Table 1.5 Requirements for control of centralised HVAC plant
|Control of centralised HVAC plant|
|Where products control the operation of centralised HVAC plant, they shall:
Table 1.6 Requirements for control of wet heating systems
|Control of wet heating systems|
|Where products control the overall operation of wet heating systems, they shall:
Table 1.7 Requirements for workstation ventilation controls
|Controls of workstation ventilation|
|Where workstations are defined as delineated containable working surfaces, such as a kitchen or laboratory fume extractor. They shall:
Table 1.8 Additional requirements when other types of equipment are controlled
|Type of equipment controlled||Relevant ETL eligibility criteria|
|Electrical lighting equipment||Lighting controls|
|Automatic monitoring and targeting equipment||Automatic Monitoring & Targeting (aM&T) Sub-metering Systems|
|Commercial refrigeration equipment||Refrigeration system controls|
|Two or more air compressors||Master controllers|
1.4 Verification for ETL Listing
There are no testing requirements, however manufacturers shall provide sales and technical brochures to evidence the conformity of their products against the requirements from section 1.3. Manufacturers shall also provide evidence of conformity with the EN 15500 criteria, detailing control accuracy and control setpoint deviation values.
1.5 Conformity testing
Products listed on the ETL may be subject to the scheme’s conformity testing programme in order to ensure listed models continue to meet the ETL requirements.
1.6.1 Indicative review date
The next technical review is scheduled for 2023-24.
1.6.2 Illustrative future direction of the requirements
Future changes to the specification may include:
a) For controller units to be capable of remote internet access (potentially through a local central secured hub), allowing for remote operation and maintenance.
b) For controller units to be compatible to function with any 3rd party HVAC system, sensor or control device.
- ETL scoping studies are underway on Building Energy Management Systems, Product systems and Smart products which may recommend future revisions to the HVAC Building Controls criteria.
- ETL scoping studies are underway for pumps and fans. These studies may result in criteria for the inclusion onto the ETL.