The Product:

Residential faucets include bathroom faucets and replacement aerators. A faucet controls and directs the flow of water.

The Standard:

Congress established national faucet standards as part of the Energy Policy Act of 1992, and they took effect in 1994. Congress instructed DOE to update the standards when the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) amended their standards. In December 2010, with no ASME revisions on the books, DOE officially waived federal preemption of the 2.2 gallon-per-minute (gpm) national faucet standard. This waiver of federal preemption allows states to set standards provided they are more stringent than the national standard.

In 2015, the California Energy Commission adopted new kitchen and lavatory faucet standards. The maximum flow rate for kitchen faucets and aerators is 1.8 gallons per minute (gpm) with optional temporary flow of 2.2 gpm at 60 pounds per square inch (psi). The maximum flow rate is 1.5 gpm for lavatory faucets and 0.5 gpm for public lavatory faucets at 60 psi. The standards went into effect in January 2016. Colorado adopted lavatory faucet standards at the WaterSense level (1.5 gpm). The standards went into effect in September 2016.

Key Facts:

About 17 million faucets are shipped annually.


Federal Date States
2021 WA Standard Effective
2021 CO Standard Effective
2021 HI Standard Effective
2020 VT Standard Effective
2019 WA Standard Adopted
2019 CO Standard Adopted
2019 HI Standard Adopted
2018 VT Standard Adopted
2016 CO Standard Effective
2016 CA Standard Effective
2015 CA Standard Adopted
2014 CO Standard Adopted
1st Federal Standard Effective 1994
EPACT Initial Federal Legislation Enacted 1992
1st Federal Standard Adopted (Congress) 1992

Timeline reflects state standards from 2001 to present; federal standards from inception to present.