How will the changes to legislation affect how you purchase commercial refrigeration?

An updated MEPs (Minimum Energy Performance standards) regime will start on 1 May 2021, in accordance with the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards Act (GEMS). This is a federal government legislation that requires that most commercial fridges and freezers be registered on the government GEMs website prior to being offered for sale.

 Williams already had many models registered under the previous MEPs requirements, primarily glass door units. The new legislation requires that many other products including solid door units must now be registered. Certain units are currently exempt from requiring registration such as medical, open-top, saladette, and blast chiller types.

 To register a product, it needs to be fully tested in a test chamber at certain conditions (temperature, humidity, airflow, lighting, door opening, etc). For Williams products there are two main standards to which units must be tested (ie/ products are tested to one only of the below standards);

  • ISO 23953– Display (glass door or open units). This is primarily aimed at Supermarket type units.

  • EN16825 – Professional units (also called Storage). Most WRA products fall into this category.

 These two international standards sit under the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards Determination 2020 – Refrigerated Cabinets, which modifies some of the above international standard conditions.

 The above two test standards are similar but significantly different. One main difference is the temperature and humidity used for the tests -Display unit tests use CC3-25C/60%RH, whereas Professional units generally use CC4-30C/55%RH (where CC stands for Climate Class). Note - testing to the Professional standard results in a higher energy consumption figure as the test is performed at a higher temperature. Units may be tested to different internal temperatures such as M1 (-1 to 5C) or M2 (-1 to 7C).

 Laboratory testing results primarily in measuring the electrical energy used (kilowatts) by a unit in a 24 hour test period, expressed as xx kWh/24h. The energy consumed is then compared to a theoretical unit of the same volume (for Professional, m3) or TDA (Total Display Area m2 for Display). This comparison then results in an EEI (Energy Efficiency Index). This EEI is then converted to a Star rating (1 to 10), as familiar to Australian consumers.

 In anticipation of these changes, Williams has upgraded our range to incorporate energy efficiency improvements such as thicker insulation, EC fans, Energy Management controls, hot gas defrost, extra glass layer, and optimised compressor and refrigeration system sizing.

 One major physical change to our range is the extra depth of Opal & Emerald units, whilst keeping most general upright units to similar external dimensions. These changes also provided the opportunity to simplify many of our model codes and our product range.

 These new requirements can be confusing, so please do not hesitate to contact us for further clarification.