Understanding the appliance rating scheme

When looking to buy an appliance you should compare the size, features, price and running costs.

For electric and natural gas appliances the energy rating label provides a useful guide for buyers. It shows how energy efficient the appliance is and how much electricity or natural gas it uses each year. The energy rating label for airconditioners shows energy use per hour, rather than an annual cost.

The aim of energy rating labels is to:

  • encourage buyers to select an appliance that uses the least energy for the service the appliance is required to perform
  • enable buyers to take into consideration the annual energy cost of operating an appliance, and also its total (life cycle) cost
  • encourage manufacturers and importers to improve the energy efficiency of products that they supply to the market.


  • refrigerators
  • freezers
  • dishwashers
  • washing machines
  • clothes dryers
  • heat pumps (with output capacities up to 7.5 kW)

Image of Electricty/Energy Rating sticker, including star rating and kWh per year.

Natural gas

  • natural gas space (room) heaters
  • natural gas ducted heaters (central heating)
  • natural gas water heaters.


Image of Gas Energy Rating sticker, including star rating and usage per year - The Australian Gas Association.


  • washing machines
  • dishwashers
  • showerheads
  • toilets
  • flow regulators and taps.


Image of Water Rating sticker, including star rating and Litres per wash - www.waterrating.gov.au