May 11, 2016

AHAM Verifide, Energy Star, Energy Guide: What they mean

AHAM Verifide®. Energy Star. Energy Guide. What do those appliance labels mean?

They aren’t just labels. If you take a closer look, you’ll get valuable information on how much energy the appliance uses, and how much you might be saving.

AHAM Verifide: This signifies that the appliance meets certain attributes of the AHAM Verifide program, including volume, energy, and for some products, performance. All products that carry the AHAM Verifide mark have been randomly selected and independently tested against rigorous federal energy test procedures. You’ll find the mark on clothes washers and dryers, dehumidifiers, dishwashers, refrigerators and freezers, room air conditioners and room air cleaners. AHAM Verifide is a voluntary program, meaning appliance manufacturers decide whether or not to participate.

Energy Star: You’ll find the blue ENERGY STAR label on certain major appliances like clothes washers and dryers, dishwashers, dehumidifiers, refrigerators, freezers and refrigerator-freezers, as well as lighting, residential heating and cooling systems. The label, launched by the Department of Energy in 1992, means that the products have been independently tested in labs to ensure they meet certain energy-efficiency criteria. AHAM has been approved by the Department of Energy as a verification body for ENERGY STAR products. This means AHAM can administer testing to ensure that products seeking the ENERGY STAR designation meet the program’s criteria. Like AHAM Verifide, participation in ENERGY STAR is voluntary for manufacturers.

Energy Guide: The yellow Energy Guide label provides a snapshot of how much energy the appliance uses. You’ll get an estimated yearly operating cost compared to other models and an estimate of how many kilowatts the appliance uses each year. The manufacturer, model number and capacity are listed. Energy Guide labels may also contain the ENERGY STAR label if the product meets those criteria. The Federal Trade Commission requires Energy Guide labels to be put on clothes washers, refrigerators, freezers, water heaters, dishwashers, room air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, heat pumps and pool heaters. Manufacturers are required to test their products using Department of Energy procedures and report the results to the FTC.

Buying energy efficient products is just one step you can take to reduce your energy costs. Need more ideas? Take a look at AHAM’s energy saving tips.