Electrical goods

This section covers the official Government Buying Standards for sustainable procurement of electrical goods such as TVs, fridges and freezers and washing machines. As well as providing links to the full specifications, it also provides more information on the key issues around procurement in this area and useful tools to help your decision-making.

What does sustainability mean for electrical goods?

It’s no surprise that the biggest factor in buying electrical goods sustainably can be their electricity use: the more efficient they are, the better. However, as well as basic power use there are other things to consider: for audio-visual equipment, standby mode can be a drain on power. For washing machines, water use becomes a factor.

Across the board too, life span is important: typically, electrical goods cannot be recycled and do not biodegrade. Buying equipment that will last longer is therefore a more sustainable option.

All central government departments and their related organisations must ensure that they meet at least the mandatory Government Buying Standards when buying goods and services in the product groups covered on this site.

Forthcoming changes in this area

Minimum energy efficiency energy-using products (EuP) standards and other requirements have been agreed for the products below. This effectively bans products from the market if they do not meet the relevant EuP standards after the deadline(s).

Government Buying Standards are compatible with EuP standards

  • Stand alone circulators: 1 Jan 2010
  • Standby (cross-cutting measure): 7 Jan 2010
  • Televisions: 7 Jan 2010
  • Simple Set Top Boxes: 24 Feb 2010
  • Tertiary lighting: 13 April 2010
  • External Power Supply Units: 26 April 2010
  • Cold appliances: 1 July 2010
  • Domestic lighting: 1 Sept 2010
  • Electric motors: 16 June 2011

See also

  • A simple tool to help users in assessing the energy usage of their electrical devices (Excel, 100 KB)
    Note: You should download this spreadsheet tool to your own computer – right-click on the link and choose “save as…” or equivalent. It only requires a standard version of Microsoft Excel – no other programmes or specialised user knowledge are required. The Tool uses Visual Basic Macros and these must be enabled within Microsoft Excel before it will work (instructions are on the first page of the spreadsheet).

Page last modified: 10 June, 2011