Water Heater Technical Study to Improve MEPS – South Africa
The residential sector accounts for approximately 17% of electricity use in South Africa, but as much as 35% during peak periods. Within households the electric water heater (WH), commonly referred to as a geyser in South Africa, is responsible for between 40-50% of total consumption and contributes substantially to morning and evening peaks. Although there is an existing Minimum Energy Performance Standard (MEPS) regulated by the standing heat loss test (SANS151) it was formulated many years ago and has not been improved since its introduction. In the current context it is considered low and ineffective.
Numerous attempts to improve the MEPS have proved futile primarily due to strong resistance from the industry. The Super-Efficient Equipment and Appliance Deployment (SEAD) is supporting the South African Government in implementing its Standards & Labeling (S&L) programme for residential appliances, which includes WH. In an attempt to break this ‘deadlock’ a cost efficiency technical study on WH was commissioned by SEAD. The research would use global and local industry experts to conduct the research so as to provide credible empirical data to clarify cost-effectiveness issues and allow for informed decision making.