How to read energy efficiency labels

Energy efficiency labels can help you choose household appliances which cost less to run and have less impact on the environment. They help you compare the efficiency of different makes and models, enabling you to make the right choice for your lifestyle and budget.

Despite the fact that energy efficiency labels are now a familiar sight when buying almost all household appliances, they can be a little confusing.  Here’s our handy guide to understanding energy ratings.

Which home appliances carry an energy efficiency label?

By law, the following products must carry energy efficiency ratings when sold in the EU:

  • Fridges and freezers.
  • Dishwashers.
  • Washing machines, washer dryers, and tumble dryers.
  • Light bulbs.
  • Ovens.
  • Air conditioning units.
  • Cooker Hoods

Understanding the label

Gorenje energy ratings

At the top of the label you’ll see a set of coloured bars which indicate the appliance’s energy consumption.  As you would expect, green A+++ is very efficient while the red D bar indicates the appliance is less efficient. The more efficient the rating, the cheaper the appliance is to run. Usually, a more efficient appliance will cost slightly more than a less efficient appliance but you will make up the different due to the utility costs.

Underneath the bars and to the right you’ll see a box indicating the annual energy consumption of the appliance in kilowatts per year.  This is calculated using specific criteria so that you can make a fair comparison between makes and models.

At the bottom of the label you may see a variety of other icons and images which give you more, relevant information which will help you choose the right appliance.  This information is particularly helpful when you’re comparing products which have the same or similar energy consumption ratings.

  • Fridges, freezers and fridge freezers will show the capacity in litres of fresh and frozen foods as well as noise levels in decibels.
  • Washing machines labels will tell you the maximum spin speed, total cotton capacity in kilograms, water consumption per cycle in litres and noise in decibels.
  • Dishwasher labels will tell you about capacity, water consumption in litres per cycle and noise in decibels.
  • Oven energy efficiency labels will give you information about capacity.
  • Cooker hood efficiency labels will give you the decibel (noise) rating.

For more information about energy efficiency labels, or for help in choosing energy efficient household appliances, please get in touch with a member of our expert team on 0844 576 5000.

Alistair Ward

I've been at Appliance House since 2011 having worked in every role at the company.