The energy efficiency of a home is as good as only to the level of the equipment energy labeling. No doubt how you manage the usage too is important. But if the equipment are not efficient in the first instance the management of usage will be mostly futile.
Quality and conformity to standards
Let’s face it! All equipment manufacturers are very fond of calling their equipment highly efficient, durable etc. etc. If you look at all the equipment in any field coming in to this country, will carry some form of quality assurance and standard. But if these don’t come from a reliable and accredited standards and quality certifying authority these may not be worth the paper they are written on. How many of us take the trouble to check the validity period of a quality standard certification and the model it is issued for?
Reliability of Quality Certifications
The only reliable system therefore is the unified EC norms, ISI and the BS as far as Ireland and UK is concerned. The appliances are graded for their overall energy efficiency with a multi tiered system denoted by a colour. (green representing the most energy efficient and the red being at the other extreme).
The rating would be A, A+ or A++ (The highest energy efficient currently available) for the former and G for the latter. However the Energy Saving Recommended Certification Mark of UK’s Energy Saving Trust surpasses even the minimum labeling requirement as above. This certification mark also takes in to consideration the environmentally friendly nature of the appliance due to its high energy efficiency.
Appliances that make the biggest dent in your earnings
The appliances used in a household today are;
• Vacuum Cleaners, Floor polishers etc.
• Pressing Irons
• Electric Kitchen appliances, Cookers, Ovens etc.
• Hair Driers, curlers, etc.
• Entertainment equipment such as TVs, Sound systems etc.
• Computers, Printers, UPS etc.
• Dish washers, Washing Machines and Dryers etc.
The Air conditioners, fans etc. are not categorized under this heading and are covered as major energy consuming equipment which only would qualify for various grants and subsidies such as HES and also accounted for in working out the BER certification.
As water heating, washing, drying, and electro-mechanical refrigeration consume substantial amounts of electrical energy, the quality, energy labeling and management of usage will tell on your annual energy costs. In a typical home a refrigerator may run continuously for 365 days. The Dish washer on the other hand incorporates Electrical Water Heaters, Motors and Fans etc. The same way washing machines too use hot water, motors, and fans. Therefore these account for a considerable portion of your annual energy bills.
If these conform to and carry European Union energy label, and preferably European Union’s eco-label, they would be most beneficial for you as a householder. The availability of Energy Saving Recommended Certification Mark would be an added bonus.