Who doesn’t want to save on utility bills? Well, perhaps it’s time to think about those appliances you’re always using in your kitchen and laundry room and how they could be contributing to your skyrocketing energy costs.
Many of the major appliances manufactured within the last decade are far more economical and efficient to use due to a number of federal policies enacted in recent years. That’s good news not only for cash-strapped homeowners who are looking to reduce their annual utility costs, but also for environmentally conscious consumers who would like to minimize their energy usage in order to protect the planet.
The Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program makes it easy for you to compare efficiency standards from model to model when you’re shopping for home appliances. The Federal Trade Commission also requires EnergyGuide labels on many home appliances to help you estimate the amount of energy you’ll actually consume when each appliance is being used.
If, for instance, you have a dishwasher built prior to 1994, you could be wasting more than 10 gallons of water every time you run the machine. By choosing appliance replacement over appliance repair, and investing in a new, more efficient dishwasher as indicated by Energy Star, you can easily save as much as 1,300 gallons of water over the life of this essential appliance.
In addition to dishwasher repair, other Energy Star-qualified appliances that can help you see a significant improvement in your utility bills include:
Refrigerators-save up to $200 a year, depending on the age of your refrigerator, with updated models that operate on 20% less energy
Freezers-save as much as $70 per year on energy costs with units that are 10% more efficient
Washing machines-save big on both energy and water bills with models that use 50% less water and only 270 kWh of electricity per load
Of course, with any major kitchen or laundry equipment purchase, Energy Star rated or not, it’s important to have a trained and experienced technician handle your appliance installation. Without the proper water and electrical connections in place, you could miss out on the optimal performance of your new appliance as well as the maximum energy efficiency. Most appliance installation professionals will even haul away your old machine as part of their convenient service, allowing you to sit back and let the savings begin.