How does the EU Ecodesign directive for transformers affect you?
Directive No 548/2014 will come into force on 1 July 2015 and is aimed at reducing the amount of energy unnecessarily wasted through transformer losses – believed to be around 2.5 per cent of the EU’s total annual energy consumption. Relating to small, medium and large power transformers with a minimum power rating of 1kVA used in 50Hz electricity transmission and distribution networks or for industrial applications, the rules carry a legal obligation, making it a criminal offence to place onto the market a transformer that doesn’t fully comply.
Q: What does the Ecodesign legislation mean for my business?
A: The regulation is only applicable to transformers purchased after the entry into force of the Regulation. However, there may be some confusion regarding the definitions of “purchase” and the actual date of “entry into force”. According to the regulation, “purchase refers to the act of contracting with the manufacturer for the delivery of a given volume of transformers”. The time period between the entry into force of the regulation on June 1, 2014 and the application of actual requirements on July 1, 2015, is to ensure that manufacturers have time to adapt to the new requirements.
Q: What if I purchased my transformers before 10 June 2014?
A: The Regulation is not retroactive and therefore does not apply in this case.
Q: What if I purchase my transformer after 1 July 2015?
A: The regulation applies and the equipment must comply with Tier 1 requirements.
Q: What about transformers purchased between these dates?
A: Transformers purchased and put into service between June 10, 2014 and June 30, 2015 are not required to meet the regulation as it is in force but the requirements do not have to be met until July 1, 2015.
Q: When is the best time to commission a new transformer – should I wait until after July 2015 or act now?
A: If you operate your transformer at a load below 35%, the new Ecodesign range could provide substantial savings for your business. After extensive research, development and testing, Bowers Ecodesign transformers are available now for order. However, if you operate at a load of 35% or more, it is worth considering Bowers’ top-selling BEST range before July 1. While it is not fully compliant with the new regulations, the combined losses that the BEST range offers are actually lower than those specified by the new legislation, making it a more economical and efficient option in many cases. Purchasing a Bowers BEST unit before the new directive kicks in could not only save you money initially, but in the long-term. The Bowers team can help you assess the options according to your use, budget, and energy-saving targets.
Q: What about the refurbishment market?
A: This aspect is one of several still open to interpretation. To circumvent much of the confusion regarding implementation of the directive, the executive body of the European Union has commissioned an Implementation Guide for the Eco-design Regulation on Transformers which, although not be legally binding, can nevertheless be used as a guidance document. As part of Bowers’ presence at Sustainability Live, the team is inviting interested parties to book free one-to-one consultations about any aspect of the Ecodesign legislation and how it may affect their business.
Q: Why should I choose Bowers over another transformer manufacturer?
A: Bowers Electricals designs and manufactures here in the UK, supporting local businesses while maintaining a competitive edge against manufacturers who import their products from outside Europe. Bowers is a family-owned business that prides itself on offering excellent customer service while being noted for the ability and flexibility to provide top-quality, bespoke engineering solutions for each client. We regularly contribute our expertise to British and European Standards Committees and Working Groups, ensuring that we are fully aware of current and future developments in the marketplace. With Bowers you can not only be confident of getting the best value for money, but of finding the solution you need – not one you have to work around.
If you are still unsure about how the Ecodesign regulations will affect you, or would like advice on what products could be most financially and environmentally beneficial for your business, get in touch.