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Your Guide… to EnerGuide!

June 11, 2024

Written by Casey Clair, Energy & Climate Advocate 

4-minute read 

If you’ve ever spent time searching for a new oven, fridge, or air conditioner, you’ve probably come across this little black and white label with a bunch of numbers on it.

But did you know this label could be your ticket to a more efficient product, and energy cost savings?

For our final Sustainability Spotlight of the season, we’re shining our focus on the Government of Canada’s EnerGuide label. Read on to understand what it means, why it’s useful, and how it’ll help you reach your efficiency goals.

Image courtesy of Natural Resources Canada.

Image courtesy of Natural Resources Canada.

Understanding Annual Consumption 

The EnerGuide label on appliances shows you the average annual energy consumption per kWh (kilowatt hour). It appears as a sticker or tag and is compulsory to have on washing and drying machines, dishwashers, refrigerators and freezers, cooktops and ovens, and air conditioners. EnerGuide labels are optional for all other energy appliances. Also, Canada’s EnerGuide labels are in black and white, not to be mistaken with the black and yellow American EnergyGuide label. These labels will often appear together on energy efficient appliances as many are sold in both Canada and the U.S. Although they are similar and both may appear on the same appliance, the range may differ depending on product availability in each country.

You may also find an ENERGY STAR symbol on or beside certain EnerGuide labels. This symbol means that the appliance is a high-efficiency product. For more information on ENERGY STAR, visit Natural Resources Canada. 

Diagnosing Your Indicator Score

The scale you’ll see on the tag indicates the annual energy consumption of the model. Most scales will range from “uses less energy” to “uses more energy”, compared to other products in the same category. For energy efficient appliances, a lower score is better. On the other hand, for most heating and cooling equipment, a higher score is better. This is can be confusing at first, but now you know how to read the right labels to make sure you’re purchasing more efficient appliances.  

Determining Types & Models 

Another set of numbers you’ll find on an EnerGuide sticker is the type and model number of the product. Below the indicator you’ll find the appliance type (ex: Type 5A) and under that, it will reference similar models in the same class that have been compared to that one. Near the bottom of the EnerGuide tag will be the official model number. So always be sure to check the EnerGuide sticker when shopping for appliances for your home or business.  

If you want to know more about EnerGuide for products, or to learn about EnerGuide for your home, be sure to check out Natural Resources Canada. If you’re looking at EnerGuide labels to be as efficient as possible, make sure you go to Efficiency Manitoba for rebates that might align with your project.  

Share Your Sustainability Story

Want to be a part of our Sustainability Spotlights when we come back in the fall? Get in touch directly with our energy and climate advocate, Casey Clair, and share your journey. Whether it’s through sustainable development, energy efficiency, environmental advocacy, or climate resiliency, you can share your story to help inform and connect you with hundreds of other Chamber members who also want a safe and green future. Have a great summer, folks! 

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