The EU isn’t quite the hot topic it was in the summer, but it’s still on everyone’s minds. How will it affect the UK? Will it be good or bad for the UK’s environment and conservation? When will Article 5 actually be triggered?
A Rule That Affects Us All
But something that’s slipped under the radar is the EU’s limits on vacuum power. When this was first announced a few years ago, it was met with the typical reaction you’d expect from many of the newspapers. What many people don’t realise is that the initial power reduction was to 1600W in 2014, but the next reduction will be to 900W and it’s happening in September 2017.
That means most of the vacuums being sold at the moment – including those from Dyson, Vax and many more which I found listed on Spotlessvacuum.co.uk while researching this post – won’t be allowed to be sold within the EU.
Of course, there is the question of whether this rule will still apply once the UK leaves the EU. I think it will, as UK companies will still want to sell their vacuums within the EU.
But a more interesting question is whether these changes are actually a good thing. And the answer, at least in terms of the environment, is a resounding yes!
Why Power Regulations are Needed
There has been such a fuss made over vacuums – mainly because people still believe that a higher wattage means a more powerful or just “better” vacuum. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Many of the best vacuums already have a power rating that is close to acceptable under the 2017 regulations – and those that won’t will simply need to innovate.
Up until the EU rules came into place, brands couldn’t stop themselves producing more and more ridiculously overpowered vacuums. These didn’t provide any more suction or performance, but it looked good to say “2000W” vacuum on the side of the box.
This was far from harmless. The amount of wasted energy consumed by these vacuums was huge and it hurt consumers as they were paying more for their electricity bills without getting any better performance.
For these reasons, I welcome the power limits. Much more needs to be done in order to save our environment, but the amount of energy saved by these rules is huge, and it directly reduces the amount of fossil fuels being burned.
And to those who complain about this as just “EU busybodies interfering with our vacuums,” I suggest you read up more on the amount of energy wasted and fossil fuels burned simply as a marketing gimmick.