Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS) are one way the Federal Government is working to ensure that only the most efficient lighting is available in the Australian marketplace. They are a powerful tool in reducing our overall power consumption.
While it's not necessary for you to know and understand the entire MEPS process, you should become familiar with the resulting energy efficiency labels to ensure that you are getting the best product for your money.
These labels, which you will have also undoubtedly seen on most whitegoods, go a long way towards helping you make an informed decision on what to buy – not only to help the environment, but also to protect your hip pocket in the long term. Products with higher star ratings consume less power, which in turn means lower power bills for you. As electricity prices rise, this is likely to become an increasingly significant concern.
Labels for LED globes
Not all LEDs are created equal, and in the past some manufacturers have made some unrealistic claims regarding the capabilities of their products. Ratings were based on very selective testing, and as a result there was a period when people were rightfully suspicious of what they were actually buying.
Lighting Council Australia (LCA) has introduced a quality program for member companies which supply LED products, and its own standardised labelling. Under this program, participating suppliers report a minimum set of critical parameters to accurately reflect the performance of their products. Manufacturers then provide test reports or other evidence to Lighting Council Australia which assesses their claims. Once the claims are verified, Lighting Council Australia labels are included on the packaging, providing independent verification of the abilities and output of the globe.
The critical parameters appearing on the SSL Quality Scheme Label are:
- Luminaire efficacy
- Light output of the luminaire
- Measured input power
- Test voltage
- Correlated colour temperature
- Colour rendering index
Be sure and check for the label below on LED globes – not only will it ensure that you are getting what you pay for, but it will probably help you to save money and reduce your carbon footprint.