20 December 2018

New regulations given the green light

New swimming pool pump regulations are expected to be introduced in 2020, following COAG Energy Ministers' agreement to the Decision Regulation Impact Statement (RIS) on 19 December 2018.

The cost to households of running a pool pump is around 18 per cent of energy bills. These costs are unnecessarily high because people continue to buy, install, and use pool pumps that are not the most energy efficient on the market.

The new regulations aim to address barriers and behaviours preventing the pool pump market from moving naturally to more efficient technologies. The regulations will contribute to lowering unnecessarily high externality costs from swimming pool pumps, such as greenhouse gas emissions, peak loads on electricity distribution networks and residential noise pollution.

In early 2019, the Equipment Energy Efficiency (E3) Program will develop a Determination under the GEMS Act, ahead of introducing MEPS levels and labelling. E3 is also working with Standards Australia to revise AS 5102.1‑2009, Performance of household electrical appliances – Swimming pool pump-units, Part 1: Energy consumption and performance. 

COAG Energy Ministers accepted the following recommendations:

  • Apply minimum energy performance standards (MEPS) and mandatory labelling to pool pumps that fall within the range of:
  Watts Amps   Watts Amps
Single Speed 600 2.6 and 1700 7.4
Two Speed 600 2.6 and 3450 15
Multi Speed 600 2.6 and 3450 15
Variable Speed 600 2.6 and 3450 15
  • Update the Australian standard that measures the energy efficiency of swimming pool pumps to:
    • more fairly compare pump types by using a weighted energy factor
    • change the scope, as shown in the table, to capture residential filtration pool pumps and exclude pool pumps used for other purposes
    • amend the definition of pump classifications of single, two, multi and variable speed pumps
    • make technical amendments to improve the robustness, reliability and repeatability of the test method.
  • Introduce a curved line star rating with higher requirements for smaller pumps and lower requirements for larger pumps to ensure that pool pumps are rated fairly.
  • Update the pool pump energy rating label and require the labels to be displayed either on the product, if displayed in store, or on the packaging.

More information will be available on the swimming pool pumps page shortly.