Retailers

Retailers

Appliance Standards and Labelling regulations have been put in place to assist consumers to purchase energy efficient appliances and to promote appliance efficiency.  The Appliance Standards and Labelling regulations have two components.  Firstly, the regulations require that appliances carry a South African Energy Efficiency Label so consumers are informed of the likely energy consumption of an appliance before they purchase it. Secondly, the regulations protect consumers from purchasing appliances that do not meet the Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS).

Benefits for Retailers

The Appliance Standards and Labelling regulations benefit retailers by:

  • Helping retailers to provide a better service to customers: retailers can now help customers estimate running costs of similar sized appliances and in doing so, provide the ‘real cost’ of an appliance to their customers who can now make a more informed purchase choice.
  • Protecting retailers from selling inefficient appliances: retailers are now protected from selling their customers inefficient appliances that are costly to run and could result in after sales complaints.
  • Helping retailers to play a role in protecting the planet: retailers can now play a role in reducing electricity consumption in South Africa therefore reducing the greenhouse gas emissions and helping to reduce the impact of climate change.

Obligations of Retailers

In terms of the regulations, retailers have two obligations:

  • Retailers must ensure that all appliances sold in-store or online carry a South African Energy Efficiency Label.The label should be supplied by the manufacturer or distributor of the appliance and it must clearly show the energy performance class of the appliance, as well as additional energy performance information about the appliance.
  • Retailers must not sell appliances that do not meet the specified Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS).

South African Energy Efficiency Label

 

A number of appliances sold in the South Africa must be labelled with a South African Energy Efficiency Label. The label indicates how much electricity the appliance is expected to use and how the efficiency of the appliance is rated in relation to other appliances in the same category.  A detailed guide to energy efficiency labelling has been developed to assist retailers and manufacturers to understand labelling requirements.

An example of a label for a washing machine is shown below. Labels for various categories of appliances differ depending on the functioning of the appliance, however, all labels include seven energy efficiency classes, and the energy efficiency class of the particular appliance is labelled clearly.

Appliances which require the label

 

Appliance Category
Label Size
Label Mandatory
Key energy efficiency information shown
Air Conditioners110 mm X 200 mmYesAnnual energy consumption in cooling mode
Dishwashers110 mm X 200 mmYesThe estimated kWh used per cycle
Electric Ovens110 mm X 200 mmYesThe estimated kWh used per standard load
Fridges and Freezers110 mm X 200 mmYesThe estimated kWh used per year
Storage Water Heater110 mm X 200 mmYesThe rate of heat loss of the storage water heater over a 24 hour period
Light bulbs (Electric lamps)55 mm X 100 mmOptionalThe watts drawn to operate
Tumble Dryers110 mm X 200 mmYesThe estimated kWh used per cycle
Washer-dryers110 mm X 200 mmYesThe estimated kWh used per cycle
Washing Machines110 mm X 200 mmYesThe estimated kWh used per cycle

Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS)

 

South Africa has put in place regulations that require appliances to meet Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS). These regulations have been put in place to protect consumers from purchasing appliances that use a wasteful amount of electricity. It is therefore illegal to sell appliances that do not meet these MEPS. For example, all air conditioners must have a rating of Class B or better.

The following MEPS have been specified:

 

Appliance Category
MEPS
Air ConditionersMinimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class B
Audio-visual EquipmentIn passive standby mode power consumption should not exceed 1 W, except for set-top boxes which must not exceed 3 W
DishwashersMinimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class A
Electric Ovens (Large)Minimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class B
Electric Ovens (Small & Medium)Minimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class A
FreezersMinimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class C
FridgesMinimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class B
Fridge-freezersMinimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class B
Storage Water HeaterMinimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class B
Tumble DryersMinimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class D
Washer-dryersMinimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class A
Washing MachinesMinimum Energy Efficiency Rating of Class A
Retailers are encouraged to ensure that their shop floor staff understand the SA Energy Efficiency Label. Resources to assist retailers training their staff are available on the retailer-training webpage.

FAQs: Have more questions? See a list of FAQs about Appliance Standards and Labelling