The EU Energy Label

The label’s main purpose is to help you make an informed decision about buying an appliance.

If you’ve purchased a household electrical appliance recently, it’s almost certain to have an EU Energy Label on it somewhere. It may be a little inconspicuous, but that tag or sticker has a surprising amount of information on it.

Part of a European Union directive to help consumers make informed choices, they’re compulsory on a number of household goods as well as other items such as light bulbs and cars.

What the label says

The EU Energy Label places all models of a particular appliance in a certain colour-coded range according to their energy efficiency.

This gives potential buyers an idea of how environmentally friendly a particular purchase is. Grades run from a dark green grade A+++, which is considered most efficient, through to the least efficient, a G grade.

In addition, the label includes energy consumption specifications alongside other details such as performance, water usage and the amount of noise it emits.

Understanding energy labels

All the data on the label is calculated by recording an appliance’s energy consumption under particular standard conditions and comparing it to other models in its class.

For example, a washing machine is tested on a cotton cycle at 60 degrees celsius with a load of 6kg. Understanding what it means for your household costs can sometimes be tricky.

Try paying attention to the kilowatts per hour (kWh) figure and comparing it to other models’ scores. You can also find a similar charge printed on your utility bills which will enable you to do a simple calculation and surmise the potential savings available to you with a more energy efficient purchase.

Its good to be aware of the appliances that tend to consume a lot of energy so that you can make better informed decisions when it comes to purchasing household goods, which in the long run should help you save more money.

Household appliances that require energy labels by law:

  • electric ovens
  • televisions
  • washing machines
  • tumble dryers
  • light bulbs
  • fridges and freezers air conditioners