ENERGY LABELS - After Spring 2021

Energy efficiency is becoming progressively more important to us as a society. Therefore, it is time to say goodbye to the old energy rating labels. This change has the consumer in mind, making it easier for everyone to understand how eco-friendly our beloved household appliances are.

Why Have Energy Ratings Changed?

Energy labels were originally introduced back in the '90s to make people aware of how efficient an appliance was. It wasn’t long until technology caught up, causing them to be updated to include three new energy classes back in 2011.

The A+, A++ and A+++ were extremely common. Over 90% of products were within this range, causing extreme confusion when people were looking to purchase something new.

In recent years, it became incredibly clear that this scale no longer worked, with the least efficient products being A and A+ rated as opposed to C and D rated. The conflict here was that many consumers believed that just because they were A or A+ rated, that they were some of the most efficient appliances on the market. This just wasn’t the case.

In fact, under the new energy rating scale, products that were once classified as A+++ in 2020, are now likely rated B or C. A++ is now classified as D or E, and A+ will find themselves F or G rated. This varies from product to product, along with product type.

What’s Changed?

The main change is the new scale. All labels will run from A to G, whereas old labels ran between A+++ to D. This will apply to refrigerators, washing machines, washer dryers, wine coolers and dishwashers to begin with.

Each new label now shows a QR code in the top right-hand corner which you can view using your phone. This allows you to find out more information about that appliance and its energy rating.

There are redesigned icons – changing depending on the appliance type, to make it simpler to understand the products features and their efficiency.

For example, new dishwasher label measurements feature energy consumption based on Eco mode per 100 cycles (rather than per annum). They also show the water consumption measured per cycle and the overall duration of the Eco cycle.

The final change is that the Union Jack will now show rather than the EU flag to represent the UK leaving the EU.

Why Do the Ratings Seem So Low?

Don’t worry, this doesn’t mean your household appliances are any less efficient than before, they are just rated slightly different. The new label system also makes it much harder for appliances to be A or B rated, meaning that these categories on our site and many others will seem bare to begin with.

This will motivate brands and inventors to create new appliances which are more eco-friendly than ever before. Understandably, the new system has much stricter requirements to avoid changes to the scale within the near future.

Inevitably, in today’s constantly changing world, the top energy classes will fill up once again in the coming years. Another rescaling will then take place.

Here is an example of the new energy label (post spring 2021)

This label can either have a Union Jack or EU flag and this particular label is shown just by way of an example