New energy class designations for appliances. Why is B better than A?

09 of June '22

Due to the continuous development and improvement of appliances, in 2021 it was decided to introduce a new symbolism for energy classes of appliances. How to read the new labels?

Reasons for the change

The new labels are intended to allow the differentiation of more technically advanced appliances. Another motivation for the change is to make the labels easier for consumers to read. Due to the fact that newer and newer appliances were already going beyond the A energy scale, + began to be added to the labels. However, such a notation is unreadable, especially since most appliances are already available in the even higher A++ or A+++ ratings. In addition, the new labels provide room for even more development and innovation in the field of energy efficiency. This is why the European Union has decided to introduce improved labeling.

What has changed?

The new scale includes grades from A to G, where A stands for the most technically advanced equipment. There is also an additional scale. This is the designation of noise class. The quietest equipment was marked with A, while the loudest equipment was marked with D. In addition, pictograms have appeared on the label, illustrating the features of the device. The way of calculating energy consumption has also changed. Previously, it was given only on an annual basis. Now, depending on the type of product, the value can be given, for example, per 100 standard cycles of use. For TVs, consumption is calculated per 1,000 hours of use. HDR mode is also included, as well as screen resolution in pixels. Another new feature is the QR code. When scanned, it redirects us to the online product card in the EPREL database. This is a page containing consumer-relevant information relevant to the model. The new labels also have a different size (192×96 mm).

Nowa etykieta energetyczna urządzeń

New energy label

Photo: European Commission| Wikimedia Commons © CC BY 3.0.

Why is the appliance class going down?

Class A and B have been reserved for equipment that is even more energy efficient than before. This is a kind of playing field for appliance manufacturers. Therefore, household appliances and consumer electronics products that were previously rated A+++ can now "drop" even to Class D. There is no simple translation of the designations here, since the way energy consumption is calculated is changing. However, nothing changes in the performance of the appliance itself. The performance and energy efficiency of a given product remains the same, only its designation changes.

What products are affected by the changes?

The new regulations introduced by the European Commission, effective March 1, 2021, apply to washing machines, washer dryers, refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, televisions and monitors. Tires also joined these products on May 1, 2021, and lamps, light bulbs and other lighting sources on September 1, 2021. The next label change is scheduled for 2023 and will apply to vacuum cleaners, ovens, stoves and hoods, for example.

Development: Katarzyna Szostak

Additional information on the reasons and scope of the changes can be found on the website of the information campaign "New labels without pluses - A guide for consumers" created under the auspices of the Ministry of Climate and Environment, the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection and the Energy Regulatory Authority.

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