As from 26th September 2015, all new hot water, heating systems and storage tanks will need to have energy efficiency labels.
The labelling system consists of labels rating the devices from A+++ to G where G is the least energy efficient. This will provide a simple system that enables homeowners and businesses to determine how energy efficient a system or product is when decisions are being made concerning which system to install. The scheme follows other successful energy efficiency labels for washing machines, fridges and air conditioning.
Critically the highest A+++ energy efficiency label will only apply to systems that include renewable energy, such as solar thermal hot water heating, where panels are fitted to the roof of a house or building. Such systems have been popular in the UK since the 1970’s with the industry being represented by the Solar Trade Association (STA) since 1978.
A new ‘package label’ has also been created among an alliance of trade bodies across Europe as part of the LabelPack A+ project with an online tool enabling heating and hot water professionals to calculate and generate the labels for combination heating and water systems. The website also contains useful information for homeowners and businesses with training guides for installers, all designed to make the transition to the new energy efficiency labels as smooth as possible. There will also be guidance to help installers recommend the most appropriate solution to consumers, depending on their budget, wishes and needs.
“The requirement for all new hot water, heating systems and storage tanks to have energy efficiency labelling is a fantastic marketing opportunity for the solar thermal industry” said Kathy McVeigh, Managing Director, CoolSky Ltd and Board Member of the STA. “Solar thermal systems are a very practical and affordable retrofit and new build renewable solution. The addition of a Solar Thermal system will make it possible for heating systems to attain up to A+++ rating. This together with the Renewable Heat Incentive available in the UK and Northern Ireland, combine to make an excellent sales tool for the installer/builder to generate some added value on the sale of a heating system.”
Ms McVeigh added that the support given to the industry by the LabelPack A+ project is very welcome and will provide the means for professionals to easily draw up the correct labelling for the systems they sell and install, making the adjustment to the new labelling requirements smoother for all involved.
The project has been triggered by EU legislation, Regulation (EU) No 811 & 812/2013  and applies to heating and hot water systems of up to 70 kW and combined heating, hot water, solar thermal and temperature control systems that also have a 2000 litre tank.