ENERGY STAR ratings have been used on appliances for the past two decades, and now can have a dramatic impact on which product consumers select. Looking for the ENERGY STAR on appliances is important because it is a quick and easy way to find out the energy demand of an appliance while shopping and comparing products.

Here is a brief overview of the program and how to use the label.

The ENERGY STAR program

The ENERGY STAR program began in 1992 under the Clean Air Act. The goal was to provide a simple way for people to reduce their greenhouse emissions. Today, the ENERGY STAR program remains voluntary yet popular. Around 4.5 billion ENERGY STAR products have been sold since the start of the program.

Consumer awareness

The program has boosted consumer awareness, and 75% of those who have purchased an ENERGY STAR product said the label played a major role when they were making their decision. The government estimates that around $230 billion has been saved on utility bills, and the program is said to have reduced emissions by 1.8 billion metric tons in its history.

The test for appliances

Appliances must meet strict standards to bear the ENERGY STAR label; these include basic guidelines for energy efficiency set by the Environment Protection Agency (EPA). The product must be certified through a third-party-testing process.