What is Title 24?
Title 24 is a collection of energy standards that address the energy efficiency of new (and altered) homes and commercial buildings. Since 1978, California residents are required to meet the energy efficiency standards contained in Title 24, Part 6 of the California Code of Regulations. Because energy efficiency reduces energy costs, increases reliability and availability of electricity, improves building occupant comfort, and reduces impacts to the environment, this has made a big impact on the how lighting and other home fixtures are used in California.
As these standards are important and necessary for California’s energy future, the goal of the California Title 24 energy standards is the reduction of energy use to benefit all. Homeowners save money, California has a more secure/healthy economy, the environment is less negatively impacted, and electrical systems are more stable.
California’s building efficiency standards have saved more than $70 billion in electricity and natural gas costs since 1978.
How does it affect lighting?
All homes and commercial buildings must achieving Title 24 compliance in California. Any new homes, or the remodeled part of new homes that require building permits, are also subject to these standards.
Within these standards includes guidelines for lighting. According to Title 24, at least 50% of the wattage in the kitchen must be consumed by high-efficacy lighting, which usually includes LEDs and fluorescents. To qualify as high-efficacy, light fixtures must be certified by the manufacturer to the California Energy Commission and can’t contain a socket that allows low-efficacy lighting, such as an incandescent. LED fixtures must offer a minimum of 90 on the color-rendering index (CRI), which measures crispness and color accuracy. Also, the color temperature must range between 2700-4000k for indoor use.
High-efficacy lighting is also defined as:
- 15 watts or less: Minimum of 40 lumens/watt
- 15 to 40 watts: Minimum of 50 lumens/watt
- More than 40 watts: Minimum of 60 lumens/watt
As exhibited, it is very important for Californians to follow these standards when proving lighting for their homes and buildings. Moreover, light fixtures with Title 24 compliance are ideal for any home in order to assure energy efficiency. You can find more information about the current Title 24 standards here.