Candy washing machine rapped over energy claimsWashing machine fails to meet energy label expectations

03 September 2011


Candy has halted production of one of its washing machines, after an investigation revealed it failed to meet all the claims on its energy label.

The investigation, undertaken by the National Measurement Office (NMO), suggests that the Candy GO482/2 washing machine uses 7% more energy than Candy claims, and that the spin dry only performs well enough for a 'B' classification, and not the stated class 'A' on the label.

Washing machine energy ratings

The EU energy labels on washing machines are split into three ratings, each relating to a different aspect of the washing machine's performance. An 'AAA' has top class performance in three categories: energy efficiency, wash performance and spin drying performance. For more information on what the labels mean, have a look at our advice guide, energy labels explained.

The NMO believes the reduced spin performance may be explained by the fact the GO482/2's spin only reached a measured 1,300rpm (revs per minute), while Candy advertises it as 1,400rpm.

Energy deviation allowed

Which? washing machines expert Katie Hill said: 'The GO482/2 carries an 'AAA' rating on its energy label - but closer scrutiny reveals it only performs well enough to be rated 'ABB'. While a degree of variation can be expected from mass produced models, it's important that manufacturers work quickly to resolve any quality issues that affect performance, so consumers can be confident in the appliances they buy.

'Which? is aware that EU energy labels don't always tell the whole story, which is why we test energy and water use in our own labs.'

A tolerance is built into declarations of energy efficiency on energy labels, allowing appliances to deviate by up to 10% from the manufacturer's claim. At 7%, the Candy GO482/2's energy efficiency deviation was within this bracket, so the NMO instead focused on the model's failure to meet its claimed spin performance.

Washer under-performance

After a 'lengthy investigation', it was discovered that the washing machine drum was slightly off balance, due to incorrect dimensions, which could cause the drum to rub against the door and reduce spin speed. According to the NMO, Candy has halted production of the GO482/2 completely and reviewed the design.

NMO enforcement director Richard Frewin said: 'Candy has worked with us and responded to develop a solution to this problem. However, this case highlights the importance for consumers to have accurate information about product performance as well as energy use.'

Measuring energy efficiency

Here at Which?, we test energy use in our labs to get an accurate view of efficiency and running costs for different models and appliances.

There can be a marked difference between A-rated washing machine models, but our running costs information will help you pick out the most efficient. Use the 'compare features' tool in our washing machines review to find the most efficient models we've tested.

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