The EU Energy Label for tumble dryers
The European Union Energy Label was introduced to allow consumers to factor in energy performance when purchasing new domestic appliances. Initially the label only applied to a small number of product groups, but with the ongoing implementation of the EU Energy-related Products Directive and Energy Labelling Directive, you will see the label appear on more and more electrical and electronic goods.
Market overview by Energy Label class
Tumble dryers are one of the most energy-hungry appliances now common in our homes, with almost half of all UK households owning one.
In May 2013, a new labelling criteria for tumble dryers came into effect. The top category for tumble dryers is now A+++, bringing tumble dryers into line with washing machines and dishwashers. Previously, the top category for tumble dryers had been A.
Currently, no tumble dryers on the market are efficient enough to qualify for the A+++ label. The most efficient models available (A++ label) make up 1% of the current market. 67% of models are in the C class.
Comparing energy-use of old and new, highly energy-efficient appliances
Knowing exactly when to replace an appliance, especially one that is still working, can be difficult. Unlike other domestic appliances, the average energy consumption of tumble dryers increased between 1990 and the mid-2000s.
You may find it useful to monitor the actual energy consumption of your tumble dryer using a plug-in energy-usage meter.
How to get your appliance to perform most efficiently
Buying the most energy-efficient model will help you save energy and money in the long run. But it’s how you use your appliance that can really make a difference too. For example:
Spin to the max. Spinning your clothes on the washing machine’s highest spin cycle will remove as much water as possible, so they will dry more quickly in the tumble dryer.
Cut down drying time. Don’t dry for longer than needed – it wastes energy. Make sure that the machine is turned off at the socket when not in use.
Dry outdoors. Save energy by drying clothes outdoors on a clothes line wherever possible, even on dry winter days, rather than using the tumble dryer. Your clothes will feel and smell fresher too.
Disposing of your old appliance
Electrical appliances are one of the fastest growing waste streams in the UK and Europe, with the amount of e-waste estimated to be rising by at least 2.5% every year.
Reusing or recycling WEEE saves thousands of tonnes of valuable materials being landfilled or otherwise disposed of. It also reduces environmental footprint associated with the extraction of raw materials and the manufacture of electrical and electronic goods.