FTC will require EnergyGuide labels on TVs starting in 2011

Televisions manufactured after May 10, 2011, will have to display EnergyGuide stickers detailing how much energy they consume, according to a Wednesday announcement from the Federal Trade Commission.

The yellow labels have long appeared on home appliances such as dishwashers and fridges and will now be required on new TVs, thanks to a recent change to the FTC's Appliance Labeling Rule. The label must be visible on the front of the TV and include the estimated annual energy cost as well as a comparison with other TVs of the same size.

“Unlike many years ago, before flat screens and plasma, today’s televisions vary widely in the amount of energy they use,” said FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz. “By comparing information on the EnergyGuide labels, consumers will be able to make better-informed decisions about which model they choose to buy, based on how much it costs to operate per year.”

Beginning next July, websites that sell TVs will also have to display an image of the label. The FTC was required to consider whether EnergyGuide labels should be displayed on TVs as part of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. The rule change was approved unanimously.