RIYADH: In order to strictly enforce the policy of conserving energy, the government has instructed all air-conditioner manufacturing companies to incorporate Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) in their appliances.
Electricity consumption in Saudi Arabia peaks in summer season, a protracted period, when the consumers both in residential and commercial sectors turn on the ACs causing a remarkable increase in electricity demand.
Saleh H. Al-Awaji, Deputy Minister for Electricity, Ministry of Water and Electricity, said there has been a 10 percent increase in the demand for electricity in 2010 that reached 45,000 MW. “The demand for electricity is expected to reach 75,000 MW during the next 10-year period,” he said.
The user of air-conditioning units both at residential, commercial and industrial sectors are major cause for increasing in demand for electricity, he said.
A high-ranking official of air-condition manufacturing company said Saudi Arabian Standards Organization (SASO) has issued new specification that the ACs exported to the Kingdom should conform.
Umaer Abid, Product Manager, Samsung Electronics Division, said an Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) is the ratio of the cooling capacity of an air-conditioner in British Thermal Units (BTU) per hour, to the total electrical input (in watts) under certain specified tests.
He said air-conditioner EER ratings higher than 10 are considered most cost effective. The higher the ratio, the less the unit will cost to operate. He said SASO has denoted the EER in star-ratings, which applies for all air-conditioners exported to the Kingdom, he said.
“We did the laboratory tests in Korea and in Saudi Arabia for EER and as the SASO stipulated the regulations since last year our company has started incorporating the energy-saving specification as required by for Saudi Arabia,” he said adding, “Saudi Arabia is very keen on energy-saving feature strictly incorporated by AC manufacturers.”
Abid was speaking at the launch of latest models of split and window type Samsung air-conditioners here, Wednesday. The company claims that some of its models launched this summer have additional features designed to eliminate the dreaded H1N1 virus from air.
Besides SASO’s specifications set for window and free-standing type ACs that conform to the star rating of two and four, respectively have also air purifying systems, he said. While the SASO star-ratings set up to 5 stars for high-end or split type models that consume far less electricity, he said. “Star-rating by SASO’s standards is the EER that denotes as to how air-conditioners are built to meet Saudi Arabia’s energy conservation requirement,” he said.
Consumers should also know that window ACs available in Saudi market are good for use in rooms that have outside open space of at least six-feet by six-feet. The cooling of window ACs that are equipped with small compressor would not be up to the required level if installed in rooms that don’t have enough flow of air such as in ducts, said the industry source.
– Saudi Gazette