What is a Class E crime in Missouri

Energy efficiency classes - All the important answers, explanations, differences and tips for the purchase decision

Everyone knows energy efficiency classes. From G to A +++ there are ten classes that provide information about the energy efficiency of technical devices (e.g. refrigerator, dryer, washing machine), buildings (e.g. house or apartment) or machines (e.g. motors). What many do not know are the effects on me personally when deciding for or against an energy efficiency class.

Important note from March 1st, 2021: The new regulations on energy efficiency classes have been in effect in Germany since March 1st, 2021. This text will be revised shortly and updated based on the new legal situation. You can currently find information about the As of 02/28/2021.

The new microwave with A +++ costs € 25 more than the A +? What does that mean for me? The used washing machine is 150 euros cheaper than a new one, but only has A instead of A ++? Do I really save on the used one or is the high energy efficiency class not justifying the price of the new machine? Our experts provide answers to these and many other important questions about energy efficiency classes.


1. History and background

Various products have been divided into energy efficiency classes for almost 20 years. At that time, the American school grading system was used as a guide and it was decided to classify between the letters A to G. A stood for the lowest energy consumption, G for the highest. At the same time, the classes were highlighted in color. Class A (including A + to A +++) is marked in dark green, energy efficiency class B in a slightly lighter shade of green, while class C appears light green. The color yellow was chosen for energy efficiency class D, while classes E and F change from a lighter to a darker orange. A shade of red was chosen for efficiency class G.

The aim of the classification was and is to encourage consumers to purchase energy-efficient devices. One major shortcoming, however, is that the devices are often classified by the manufacturer themselves and not tested by an independent organization, such as the TÜV.

To determine the energy label, a reference device from 1998 was determined for many device types, which is then assumed to have an energy efficiency index of 100 percent. Technical progress ensured that more and more devices were assigned class A. For this reason, classes A + and A ++ were introduced for refrigerators in 2003, and classes A + to A +++ were added for dishwashers, washing machines and televisions in 2011. Fridges were also able to receive the A +++ label from 2013.

Energy efficiency classes are assigned for a wide variety of household appliances, but now also for newly purchased vehicles. The scale is intended to provide information on how high the energy requirement (electricity and other energy sources) is, but also indicate other usage properties. These regulations were laid down in Germany in the Energy Consumption Labeling Ordinance (EnVKV) and apply to

  • Refrigerators and freezers
  • Washing machines and dryers
  • dishwasher
  • Electric ovens
  • Extractor hoods
  • Water heater (boiler) and storage tank
  • Room air conditioners
  • TV
  • Vacuum cleaner and

Since July 2012, all newly acquired refrigerators and freezers must at least meet the requirements for the energy efficiency label A +. This has been the case for washing machines since December 1st, 2013. It is also stipulated that the EU energy label must be clearly visible on either the front or the top of the device. At the same time, further information (for example on water consumption) can be found here, which has no effect on the classification in energy efficiency classes, but on the subsequent costs.

It is interesting that the EU also stipulates compliance with minimum standards. For example, tumble dryers that have recently come onto the market must at least correspond to energy efficiency class C, and since November 2015 even to energy efficiency class B. It should be noted that tumble dryers classified in class A +++ require around 70 percent less electricity than models in Class B were classified.

In 2017, the EU Parliament decided to revise the class designation and switch back to the classification from A to G. A labeling of new devices in the levels A + to A +++ should therefore no longer be possible. First, the classification for washing machines, refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, lamps and TVs will be revised. It should lead to more clarity among consumers and will probably take place from the beginning of 2020.

2. Classification in energy efficiency classes

The devices may only consume a certain amount of electricity from the previously specified reference device. The lower this proportion, the higher the rating. An important criterion in the division of refrigerators is the volume of the room. In the case of a refrigerator that is classified as A +++, the energy requirement may only be a maximum of 22 percent of the reference device. In the case of a classification in class A +, this value is a maximum of 42 percent, in a classification in group A it is 55 percent. Class C devices even have an energy requirement of 95 percent of the 20-year-old reference device.

Lamps are classified in classes A ++ to G. Here, the maximum consumption value for a classification in A ++ is ≤ 11 percent, for a classification in group A + is ≤ 17 percent. With a classification in group C, the maximum possible consumption is ≤ 80 percent of the reference object.

The progress made in televisions is particularly great. In the 1990s, tube devices were still very often in use here. A flat screen television can now be found in almost every household. This has a completely different processing, which is one of the reasons why the energy requirement has changed significantly. At the same time, the screen diagonal was often chosen to be larger, which also had an impact on the classification. Televisions that are labeled with class A +++ may only have 10 percent of the energy requirement of the reference device; if they are classified in class A +, the energy requirement is a maximum of 23 percent. Class C devices can consume a maximum of 60 percent of electricity.

Washing machines for domestic use, which are classified in class A +++, have a maximum energy consumption of 46 percent compared to the reference device, devices in class A + 59 percent. Class C devices are allowed to consume 87 percent of the amount of energy specified for the reference device.

Dishwashers that are used in private surroundings have a maximum energy requirement of 50 percent if they are classified in class A +++. A classification in class A + corresponds to an energy requirement of a maximum of 63 percent. Devices with the classification C require up to 90 percent of the energy of the reference device.

In the meantime, energy efficiency classes have even been assigned to cars. The best rating here is A ++ if the energy requirement is below 45 percent. A division into class A ++ is provided for less than 54 percent, and class A + for less than 63 percent. If a classification was made in group C, the required amount of energy must be a maximum of 89 percent.

As already mentioned, the devices to determine the energy efficiency are first sorted according to size classes. In the case of screens, the screen diagonal is the size factor, in the case of refrigerators it is the volume. A device is then allocated based on the deviation of the actual energy consumption from the reference value of the respective size class. Each device is compared with the appropriate reference device and should only consume a fraction of the amount of energy. The lower the energy efficiency index, the more efficiently the device works. The resulting so-called energy efficiency index areas are summarized in the energy efficiency classes.

2.1 Energy efficiency classes for electrical items

Energy efficiency classes are assigned for both electrical items and houses (see 2.2). This is to ensure that consumers can immediately see how energy-efficient a device is, but also that the homeowner is clear about the structure of the building and the heating consumption.

Compared to a fictitious reference device, only a certain amount of electricity may be consumed in order to be classified in the respective energy efficiency class. This is included

  • Household refrigerators at a maximum of 21 percent
  • Televisions at a maximum of 9 percent
  • Household washing machines at a maximum of 45 percent
  • Household dishwashers at a maximum of 49 percent and
  • Cars at a maximum of 44 percent

the power consumption of the respective reference device.

In comparison to the reference device, the following limit values ​​apply here:

  • Household refrigerators: a maximum of 32 percent
  • Lamps: 11 percent maximum
  • TV: Maximum 15 percent
  • Household washing machines: a maximum of 51 percent
  • Household dishwashers: a maximum of 56 percent
  • Cars: 53 percent maximum.

The energy efficiency class A + applies if the following values ​​are reached or undercut compared to the reference device:

  • Household refrigerators: a maximum of 41 percent
  • Lamps: Up to 17 percent
  • TV: 22 percent maximum
  • Household washing machines: up to 58 percent
  • Household dishwashers: up to 62 percent
  • Cars: Up to 62 percent.

In order to comply with the criteria of energy efficiency class A and to justify a corresponding classification, the energy consumption compared to the reference device must not exceed the following values:

  • Household refrigerators can consume up to 55 percent of the energy of the reference device
  • Lamps up to 24 percent
  • TV up to 29 percent
  • Household washing machines up to 67 percent
  • Household dishwashers a maximum of 70 percent
  • Cars up to 71 percent.

Devices are classified in energy efficiency class B if they do not exceed the following power consumption values ​​compared to the reference object:

  • Household refrigerators: 74 percent
  • Lamps: 60 percent
  • TV: 41 percent
  • Household washing machines: 76 percent
  • Household dishwashers: 79 percent
  • Cars: 80 percent.

In energy efficiency class C, there are electrical devices whose power consumption does not exceed the following values ​​compared to the fictitious reference device:

  • Household refrigerators: 94 percent maximum
  • Lamps: Up to 80 percent
  • TV: Up to 59 percent
  • Household washing machines: 86 percent
  • Household dishwashers: 89 percent
  • Cars: 89 percent.

The energy efficiency class D includes devices whose power consumption is almost identical to that of the reference object. In detail, the power consumption values ​​are as follows:

  • Household refrigerators: a maximum of 110 percent
  • Lamps: Up to 95 percent
  • TV: 79 percent maximum
  • Household washing machines: 87 percent and more
  • Household dishwashers: 90 percent or more
  • Cars: Up to 99 percent.

Classification in energy efficiency class E is not possible for household washing machines and dishwashers. With them, energy efficiency class D is the worst possible option.

For lamps, the energy efficiency class E is the worst possible classification. Otherwise, the following values ​​apply to efficiency class E compared to the reference device:

  • Household refrigerators: Here, the power consumption can be up to 24 percent higher than the reference device, i.e. a maximum of 124 percent.
  • Lamps: The limit here is 95 percent and higher.
  • Television: 94 percent maximum
  • Cars: Up to 107 percent.

The following limit values ​​apply to energy efficiency class F:

  • Household refrigerators: up to 149 percent
  • TV: 99 percent maximum
  • Cars: a maximum of 116 percent

The energy efficiency class G is to be regarded as the worst classification. The following power consumption values ​​apply here compared to the reference object:

  • Household refrigerators: 150 percent and more
  • TV: 100 percent and more
  • Cars: 117 percent and more.

2.2 Energy efficiency classes of houses

There are energy efficiency classes not only for electrical devices and systems (see 2.1), but also for buildings. If a building or an apartment is about to be sold, an energy efficiency certificate must be issued for these rooms. On this, the energy efficiency class of the building and its energy value are noted on a kind of speedometer tape.

What exactly do the energy efficiency classes in houses stand for?

As with electrical appliances, energy efficiency classes are also assigned to houses in alphabetical order. A ++ is for the lowest energy consumption, G for the highest. If the classification was carried out before May 1, 2014, properties could also be classified in classes H and J. The older classifications are valid for ten years, which is why there are still buildings classified in classes H or J. As a rule, however, these have hardly been repaired or refurbished, or they have been carried out decades ago.

The energy efficiency class A +, newly created in 2014, includes all buildings that meet the KfW Efficiency House Standard 40 or the Passive House Standard. The energy value here is less than 30 kWh / (m² · a).

KfW Efficiency Houses 40 and Passive Houses are also classified in this class. However, their energy value only has to be below 50 kWh / (m² · a). Until 2014, a limit of 40 kWh / (m² · a) was in effect here.

Buildings classified in energy efficiency class B have an energy value of less than 75 kWh / (m² · a) (up to 2014 between 40 and 60 kWh / (m² · a)). These properties are also known as the KfW-55 and the 3-liter house.

Buildings with an energy requirement of less than 100 kWh / (m² · a) are classified in energy efficiency class C. Until 2014, the energy requirement was allowed to be between 60 and 80 kWh / (m² · a). These consumption values ​​are achieved with a classic low-energy house.

Most of the new buildings classified in energy efficiency class D meet the requirements of the EnEV. At the same time, however, old buildings that are equipped with good insulation and an optimized heating system can often be found in this classification. The energy value here is less than 130 kWh / (m² · a) (previously between 80 and 110 kWh / (m² · a)).

Buildings classified in energy efficiency class E have an energy value that is below 160 kWh / (m² · a). Until 2014, a limit of 150 kWh / (m² · a) applied here. Many buildings that have been classified in class E are buildings that just barely comply with the criteria of the EnEV. Many apartment buildings, on the other hand, are already assigned to class D. In the case of old buildings, the classification in energy efficiency class E can indicate that a higher-quality modernization has already taken place.

Houses whose consumption value does not exceed 200 kWh / (m² · a) belong to energy efficiency class F. Previously, the possible energy range was between 150 and 200 kWh / (m² · a). The buildings classified here mostly include old buildings that have been completely modernized in accordance with the EnEV.

Buildings assigned to energy efficiency class G have generally only been partially modernized. These are mostly old buildings in which only partial areas have been insulated or only a new heating system has been installed without implementing further energy-related measures. The energy consumption of these buildings must not exceed 250 kWh / (m² · a). Up until 2014 the energy value was between 200 and 300 kWh / (m² · a).

No energy saving measures were taken in these buildings. Insulating glazing can possibly also be installed in buildings that are classified in class H. The energy consumption values ​​are over 250 kWh / (m² · a).

The energy efficiency classes H and J will lose their validity in 2024. Anyone who owns a property classified in classes H and J, but also in energy efficiency class G, should think about a comprehensive renovation as soon as possible. Our ESA energy consultant will be happy to support you - and of course all other interested parties - in planning and implementing these measures.

3. Frequently asked questions FAQ


3.1 Is the energy efficiency class A really that much worse than A +++ for washing machines?

The differences in electricity and water consumption are significant. For example, while a washing machine classified in energy efficiency class A +++ may consume less than 46 percent of the amount of electricity in the reference object, the value for a class A device is up to 68 percent. The power consumption therefore differs by at least 23 percent.

3.2 I have just found a cheap offer for a refrigerator, which only has energy efficiency class B. This is a lot cheaper than class A +++ models.Does it make sense to choose the cheapest model?

Although the acquisition costs are initially lower than for some models in the A +++ class, it must be taken into account that devices such as refrigerators, washing machines, dishwashers and televisions will be used for many years. In the case of the Class B device, this is of course reflected in higher power consumption and the resulting increase in costs. Therefore, it makes perfect sense to choose a model from classes A +++ or A ++. In some places, the purchase of new electrical appliances is also supported by granting subsidies. Inquire with a local dealer or with the administration of your municipality or your city or with the district administration whether they have also set up such a program.

Dealers are also encouraged to take old devices back with them when they deliver large electrical appliances, provided this has been agreed in advance. Some of them offer a bonus when buying a new device for the old model. Find out about this too.

3.3 How long will it take to recover the higher acquisition costs for the new device due to the lower consumption?

That depends, among other things, on the power consumption of both devices. You can find information on power consumption either, if still available, on the energy label of your old device or by researching the Internet. Enter the exact designation of your electrical device, if possible including the serial number. In washing machines, this is very often attached to the inside or to the frame of the door opening or to the rear. Then compare the average annual electricity consumption of both devices. In addition to the difference, you then determine the current electricity price. The final value achieved in this way shows the possible savings within one year. Compare the costs saved in this way with the amount of the purchase price.

3.4 I do not currently have any major financial reserves. Does it make sense to save on a new device of the higher efficiency class or should I rather pay off the purchase amount in installments?

In general, of course, it is financially better for you if you save the purchase amount first. However, if this is not possible, because the old device has just broken, for example, payment in installments is of course an option. Then you should pay particular attention to the resulting long-term costs.

3.5 I have just discovered a refrigerator on eBay classifieds that only has efficiency class A +. Is it worth the money or shouldn't I opt for a class A +++ device after all?

Class A + refrigerators must have a power consumption of less than 42 percent of the reference value. In the case of class A +++ devices, on the other hand, it may only be a maximum of 21 percent. With refrigerators running continuously day and night, low power consumption is of tremendous importance and will greatly reduce monthly electricity bills.

3.6 What else should I look out for when buying a new washing machine or dishwasher?

In addition to electricity consumption, water consumption is also a decisive criterion. When buying a new device, you should therefore not only keep an eye on the energy efficiency class, but also the average water consumption indicated on the label. Older machines in particular use significantly more water than new machines. You should therefore opt for a device that has been classified in the energy efficiency class A ++ or A +++ and which is also characterized by low water consumption.

With dishwashers it is of course also important to pay attention to how many place settings there is. While a device with four or six place settings may be sufficient for a single or two-person household, families usually need larger devices that offer more place settings. Obtaining and using them is of course associated with higher costs.

3.7 Is it worth changing to a dryer with energy efficiency class A ++?

A lot has happened in recent years, especially with the dryers. The best-rated devices only need around 50 percent of the energy that a model that is ten years or older needs. By buying a new device that has been classified in a higher energy efficiency class, more than 100 euros can be saved annually with regular use of the old and new device.

3.8 Will there be changes to the labels in the future?

Yes, the EU plans to revise these labels and return to the A to G system. Therefore, the new EU energy label regulation came into force on August 1st, 2017. In a first step, they will be revised for washing machines, dishwashers, refrigerators, televisions and lamps. The first signs of the regulation will likely be visible in 2020. The aim is to provide consumers with more clarity.

Seek advice

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