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Covered Product Category: Commercial Griddles

The Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) provides acquisition guidance and Federal efficiency requirements for commercial griddles, 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.

Energy Star LogoThis acquisition guidance and associated ENERGY STAR product specifications apply to commercial grade, thermostatically controlled, single- or double-sided, gas and electric griddles. Manually controlled griddles and fry-top ranges are not covered.

Energy Efficiency Requirements for Commercial Griddles

ENERGY STAR sets energy efficiency requirements in its product specifications. Energy efficiency requirements for various commercial griddle types and sizes are outlined in the following chart. Federal purchases of commercial griddles must meet or exceed these cooking energy efficiency and idle energy rates. Most manufacturers display the ENERGY STAR label on complying models. For a model not displaying this label, check the manufacturer's literature to determine if it meets the efficiency requirements outlined below.

Table 1. Efficiency Requirements for Federal Purchasesa
Griddle Type and Sizeb Cooking Energy Efficiencyc Idle Energy Rated
Gas, Single, 24 in. x 24 in. 38% or greater 10,600 Btu/hour or less
Gas, Single, 36 in. x 24 in. 38% or greater 15,900 Btu/hour or less
Gas, Single, 48 in. x 24 in. 38% or greater 21,200 Btu/hour or less
Gas, Single, 60 in. x 24 in. 38% or greater 26,500 Btu/hour or less
Electric, Single, 24 in. x 24 in. 70% or greater 1,280 watts or less
Electric, Single, 36 in. x 24 in. 70% or greater 1,920 watts or less
Electric, Single, 48 in. x 24 in. 70% or greater 2,560 watts or less
Electric, Double, 14 in. x 13 in. 70% or greater 403 watts or less

a Requirements as of September 2011. For the latest efficiency requirements, visit the ENERGY STAR website.
b Only the most common sizes found on GSA Advantage are shown. Other sizes are available.
c Based on ASTM F1275 and ASTM F1605.
d Based on ENERGY STAR Program Requirements for Commercial Griddles, Version 1.0.


Determining Cost Effectiveness

An efficient product is cost effective when the energy cost savings over its functional lifetime exceed any initial incremental cost above a base model (i.e., the energy cost savings is greater than additional costs at the time of purchase). Federal purchasers may assume that ENERGY STAR–qualified and products meeting FEMP-designated efficiency requirements are life-cycle cost effective. However, users wishing to determine cost effectiveness for their application may do so using the cost effectiveness example in table 2.

Products meeting FEMP-designated efficiency requirements or ENERGY STAR performance specifications may not be life-cycle cost effective when energy rates are below the Federal average or in certain low-use applications, such as when a device will remain in off mode for most of its useful life. For most applications, purchasers will find that energy-efficient products have the lowest life-cycle cost. In high-use applications or when energy rates are above the Federal average, purchasers may save more if they specify products that exceed the Federal efficiency requirements, as shown in the Best Available column below.

The cost effectiveness example provided in table 2 is for a standard 36-inch x 24-inch flat plate electric griddle that operates eight hours a day, 250 days per year, has one preheat cycle, and cooks 100 pounds of food per day (typical for a cafeteria). In this example, a commercial electric griddle is cost effective if the purchase price is no more than $795 above the base model price. The best available model is cost effective if its price is no more than $1,810 above the base model.

Table 2. Cost Effectiveness Example
Performance Base Model Required Best Available
Cooking Energy Efficiency 65.0% 70.0% 79.0%
Idle Energy Rate 2,500 watts 1,920 watts 1,464 watts
Annual Energy Use 9,500 kWh 8,570 kWh 7,385 kWh
Annual Energy Cost $855 $770 $665
Lifetime Energy Cost $8,130 $7,335 $6,320
Lifetime Energy Cost Savings $795 $1,810


The assumed price for electricity is $0.09 per kWh, the average at Federal facilities in the United States. Lifetime energy cost is the sum of the discounted value of annual energy cost for an assumed griddle life of 12 years. Future electricity price trends and a 3% discount rate are from the Price Indices and Discount Factors for Life Cycle Cost Analysis.

Operating conditions vary from facility to facility. To help determine cost effectiveness in operating conditions different from the example, the Food Services Technology Center offers a life cycle cost calculator for griddles.

Contracting Considerations

These requirements apply to all forms of procurement, including construction guide specifications and 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 in 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. Agencies may claim an exception to these requirements through a written finding that no ENERGY STAR-qualified or FEMP-designated product is available to meet the functional requirements, or that no such product is life cycle cost effective for the specific application. Additional information on Federal requirements is available.

Buyer Tips: How to Choose Efficient Products

Look for griddles with technologies that improve efficiency and cooking performance (e.g., infrared burners, steam powered, heat pipes, pulse combustion). For example, chrome griddles radiate up to 50% less heat into the kitchen than standard griddles, thus reducing air conditioning loads and keeping the kitchen more comfortable.

In high production facilities like mess halls, consider double-sided griddles, which have higher cooking efficiencies and lower idle energy rates. Cooking times are reduced by about half because these products heat from both the top and bottom, which could also translate into faster service.

Griddles produce less smoke and heat than char broilers and offer a low-cost alternative in some kitchens.

User Tips: How to Use Products More Efficiently

Idle or standby energy consumption is a significant portion (up to 40%) of griddle energy use. Griddles should be turned off when not in use, as most take less than 15 minutes to preheat. For griddles with multiple sections, turn off unused sections during slow periods. Double-sided griddles should have their tops down when not in use to improve insulation and heat retention.

Finding More Information

Updated November 2011