The Energy Related Products Directive (ErP) is a huge drive to really push the green agenda across Europe, and it comes into force in September 2015. This will have a massive impact on the heating industry, so it’s important that the information regarding it is clear and concise.
Back in 2007, the European Council set some serious environmental targets to be achieved by 2020. They wanted to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20%, make a 20% improvement in energy efficiency and to grow the share of renewable energy to 20%. This was known as the 20-20-20 target and it needed a clear policy to make these targets come to fruition.
Energy Related Products are products that account for a large amount of energy consumption across the EU. Under the new Directive, only the most efficient products will be manufactured and sold and the way they are tested to ensure they are saving energy will be standardised across all manufacturers.
The Directive consists of two parts which is hoped will make it easy for installers and consumers alike when choosing the most energy efficient products to be installed in their homes.
The first part is regarding EcoDesign regulations, which will make sure that any products that do not meet certain efficiency guidelines will not be issued with a CE mark - the all important ‘seal of approval’ that energy products require to be legally sold in the UK.
Part 2 is the Energy Labelling Regulations which will ensure that all products are clearly labelled with easy-to-read, colour coded ratings from A+++ at the most efficient end of the scale, to G at the lowest end.
The impact on the average heating installer will be quite large, though having to learn some extra knowledge may well lead to greater business opportunities. Regarding heating systems, each individual component will have their individual efficiency ratings. However, installers will also have to calculate the efficiency of the system as a whole in order to make sure the customer is getting the most efficient system overall.
For example, when installing a boiler with heating controls, water heater and a heat pump, the installer will need to look at the efficiency ratings of each product and come up with system efficiency figure. This requires the installer to learn about what can and can’t be legally installed, as well as being able to have enough knowledge about the efficiency of each product to ensure that their give the customer the best possible system. The positive side to this is it gives the installer the opportunity to sell a complete heating system rather than simply the individual components.
So while there is more to learn, the UK is actually very well prepared for the onset of the Directive and is leading the way in Europe on efficiency technologies. In 2013, 99% of new boilers installed in UK homes were gas condenser boilers, whereas the rest of Europe could only claim 26%. Additionally, the UK accounted for a whopping 42% of all condenser boiler sales in the whole of Europe.
We’re ready for the new Directive which is coming in September 2015 and the UK’s installers will be helping to take the UK to the forefront of Europe in meeting efficiency targets.
Article by Benjamin Clarke