The Guide > Household > Appliances > Air Conditioners
Although there is little specific information, the concern is that super cheap appliances mean manufacturers are skipping standards relating to workers' conditions and wages, and the quality of materials used in production.
- Choose items from companies that rate well in the 2016 Electronics Industry Trends report by Baptist World Aid. This report grades 56 companies on the practices and policies they have in place to mitigate the risk of forced labour, child labour and exploitation. Behind the Barcode
Of all the energy used by a household 29% goes on use of appliances. This includes 9% on the fridge and freezer, and 15% on electronic equipment and items such as irons, vacuum cleaners and sewing machines. Cutting the energy used by your appliances can have an immediate effect on bills and carbon emissions. See article for more on specifics for dryers, refrigerators and freezers.
- The Energy Rating Label shows the energy performance of particular appliances. It works hand-in-hand with Minimum Energy Performance Standards that establish a minimum level of energy performance that products must meet before they can be sold to consumers. Choose products that compare well. Energy Rating Calculator
- Like your TV and computer, your microwave (and even some washing machines) have a 'standby' mode, which means they're still using energy even when you are not using them. Unplug your appliances when they're not in use. Choice
The French government introduced legislation in 2016 to combat 'planned obsolescence' - the practice of designing products with restricted life spans to ensure consumers will buy more.
- Whether shopping for a new appliance or just trying to make an old one keep ticking, it's useful to know the average useful lives of big-ticket home appliances. The Life Expectancy of 7 Major Appliances
Replacing your appliance? If your old appliance is efficient, less than 10 years old and in good condition, it's a suitable candidate for reuse. Give it to someone you know, donate it to a charity or advertise on freecycle.org.au or eBay.
- For old appliances that no longer work, the best option is recycling. Find your nearest drop-off location. Recycling Near You
Country of Origin information on a product label indicates where that item is 'substantially transformed'. In regards to appliances this usually refers to assembly. Due to inexpensive labour in other countries and manufacturer contracts for materials changing on a product-by-product basis it is likely that the individual parts have come from a number of other places. Find out more in this Choice article.
|Praises, no criticism
|Some praise, no criticism
|Praises, some criticism
|Criticism, some praise
Note: Ratings are based on company record, including parent companies. They are not a comment on the product itself.
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|Outstanding product feature