Our Guide To The EU's New Energy Label

The EU is set to implement revised energy labels from the 1st of March 2021. The new labels offer a simplified version of current energy labels.

These labels make it easier for customers to find and buy energy-efficient devices such as dryers, ovens, and wine coolers.

Energy labels tell you how much energy devices use compared to similar products.

You’ll get a good idea of how much energy your wine cooler uses compared to other options. The new labels apply to all domestic appliances sold in the EU.

 

What’s Changed With The New Labels?

The current energy labels and new energy labels rank products on a scale of A – G. Products with an A-rating are the most energy efficient.

New technology allows products to be much more energy efficient than they were just five years ago.

Modern devices are so energy-efficient, in fact, that they can’t be measured on the same scale as old products.

The EU changed the Energy Label scale to better reflect the energy efficiency of modern products.

The new system removes the energy classes of A+, A++, and A+++ to simplify things. Customers might not understand the difference between an A+ and A++ product.

The new scale once again makes A the highest rating.

Changing the scale is the only real difference. However, there are some small differences, such as annual energy consumption.

The EU also changed the calculation and testing methods for the scale, so products might rank differently now.

Of course, the products themselves remain unchanged. You can buy a wine cooler and know that you’re getting a wine cooler, no matter the energy efficiency ranking.

The new energy labels mean that manufacturers have a bit of room to make their products more energy efficient in the coming years.

The EU won’t classify any products with an A rating from the start. Manufacturers will have to improve the quality of their products and earn that rating.

Manufacturers have been using these updated labels since the 1st of November, 2020. Manufacturers put both the old and new labels on their products.

The first products to get the new rating are electronic displays, refrigerators, and washing machines. These appliances have new labels as of the 1st of March 2021.

Lamps will get them on the 1st of September and air conditioners, ovens, water heaters, and range hoods will get them by 2022.

 

Why Has The EU Changed To An A To G Scale?

The change comes because new products are more energy-efficient than ever before.

Almost all appliances released these days fall into the top categories – between A+++ and B.

Instead of making the range longer and adding yet more plus signs to the A rating, the EU has rescaled the system to make it simpler and make A the highest rating again.

The higher categories are empty at first, leaving extra room for innovation and improvement.

The rescaled energy efficiency label means products are tested to higher standards and need to work harder to meet the criteria for a perfect rating.

Products with an A rating under the new system will be truly energy efficient.

Another change to the labels is the addition of QR codes. Scanning the QR code takes a customer directly to the EU’s product database, where they can see more about the product and how efficient it is.

You’ll get an instant overview of an appliance and what you can expect from it.

 

Why Do Some Products Have Two Energy Labels?

Most products still have two labels to prepare for the transition between the old and new energy label.

These old labels will be phased out over time until only the new labels are listed on products.

Products might lose a ranking or two because of the more stringent testing requirements of the new system. For example, your old A+++ rated fridge may drop down to a C rating under the new system.

The fridge is the same and it’s just as energy efficient as before, but its rank changes under the new system.

When buying a wine cooler and looking for the most efficient model, be sure to compare the same labels.

Either compare the new labels or the old labels and don’t compare an old label on one product to a new label on another.

As mentioned before, nothing will get an A-rating out of the block.

 

Why Has the Product Rating Changed?

The EU changed how they calculate energy ratings. The new labels are calculated differently. This means that you could see a change in product ratings between the old and new label.

For example, washing machines are currently judged based on annual use. However, the new system measures washing machines against every 100 washing cycles rather than annual use.

How energy consumption is measured for televisions has changed too. The new system takes into account how much energy the TV consumes as a whole, rather than how much energy is needed for the display.

Appliances are just as energy-efficient as they were before. The difference is that they are judged according to different standards and criteria.

Wine coolers and other appliances are becoming more energy efficient by the day, so the EU had to change the standards to compensate.

Changing the criteria is easier to understand than creating a new A++++ rating. It’s complicated enough trying to keep up with A+++.

 

Final Thoughts

How the EU measures and rates energy efficiency is changing. Not only do these new labels work as a guide for people to save energy and money, but they also offer environmental information in some cases.

The labels might display how much noise an appliance generates or how much water it consumes, for example. These new labels allow customers to make more informed decisions and contribute to a brighter and greener economy.

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