The Ecodesign and Energy Labelling Directives (widely referred to as ErP) have now introduced another type of labelling for electric showers. Peter Manning, Bristan’s Technical Liaison Manager, tells us more.
The voluntary Water Label, developed by the Bathroom Manufacturers Association and now operated by The Water Label Company, can be seen on a wide range of bathroom products, including showers and taps, and is increasingly being included on manufacturers’ point of sale material, websites and literature.
Since its introduction, the Water Label has been helping installers and consumers to identify water efficient bathroom products more easily, and make a more informed choice. The label provides comparative information on water use between similar products, and the scheme provides easy access to a database of bathroom products that, when installed and used correctly, will use less water and save energy and money.
The Water Label is a very useful tool that can guide eco-conscious consumers towards water efficient products. However, installers should always explain the link between efficiency and performance to ensure the customer is not left disappointed with their shower or tap, and their expectations are met.
If a label indicates that a shower or tap has lower flow rates, the product will usually be optimised for water efficiency, whereas a product showing high flow rates will be optimised for performance. Generally, higher performing products will use more water. While many manufacturers have worked hard to develop showers and taps that still deliver good flow rates even though they use less water, the performance of a water efficient shower or tap will always, to some degree, be compromised.
From September 26th, mandatory labelling is now in force for water heaters of a certain capacity, including those with an instantaneous heating design, such as electric showers.
This is a result of the Directive 2010/30/EU, which establishes a framework for the harmonisation of national measures on end user information on the consumption of energy and other resources during use of energy-related products (ErP), which was adopted by the EU on May 19 2010. It applies to energy-related products sold in the domestic, commercial and industrial sectors in the European Economic Area. Many product groups are affected, with specific regulations being phased in at different points in time.
The Ecodesign and Energy Labelling regulations resulting from Directive 2010/30/EU mean that products must be supplied with an Energy Label showing the energy efficiency class and the annual energy consumption of the product. Products such as fridges, freezers, TVs and washing machines are already supplied with this label.
Water heaters with a rated output of equal or below 400kW will need to meet minimum energy performance criteria, and those with outputs of up to 70kW will require an energy label; therefore all electric showers will be affected. It is likely that all electric showers – no matter what their output – will have the same or a very similar rating between A to G (changing again for water heaters to A+ to F from September 26th 2017).
The energy efficiency class must be included in any advertising and in any technical promotional material, such as datasheets. Additional performance and efficiency parameters need to be disclosed through a ‘product fiche’ – a table of information that has to be included in the fitting instructions, sales literature and other such marketing material. It must also be supplied/made available for merchants to include in their advertising.
Energy Labelling will work in parallel to the Water Label. The schemes are not related, but the latest version of the Water Label now includes an additional energy figure for specific water using products, based on hot water usage.
Product labelling can be a really effective tool to help consumers choose a shower or tap that’s right for them – and so we would urge installers to use Energy Labelling and the Water Label when quoting and making recommendations.