Most of us are looking for ways to save money and reduce our carbon footprint. Using energy-efficient appliances vs. regular appliances can help you achieve that goal.
By using Energy Star Certified appliances, you can ensure that you are getting an energy-efficient fridge, energy-efficient dryer, energy-efficient water heater, and many other appliances and products that will have you save money and energy.
Explaining Energy Star
The Energy Star Certification program is administered through the Environmental Protection Agency. Strict specifications and rigorous testing and evaluation, including off-the-shelf testing, are adamantly followed to ensure that products holding Energy Star certification provide the same or better service or condition, but use less energy. By using less energy, energy-efficient appliances can:
- Save money
- Reduce carbon footprint
- Lower emissions from power plants
- Qualify for Energy Star rebates
Energy Star Appliances vs. Regular Appliances
As stated above, Energy Star appliances must provide the same or better quality function (i.e., a washer must adequately clean clothes, a dryer must adequately dry them), while also using less energy.
Appliances account for approximately 30% of your total energy bill each month, so let’s do the math to see how much you can potentially save using Energy Star appliances vs. regular appliances.
If your monthly electric bill is $200, 30% for appliance use equals $60. Depending on the age and efficiency of your current appliances, let’s say that switching to energy-efficient refrigerators, energy-efficient clothes washers, or energy-efficient dryers will save you half of that $60, or $30 per month. In a year’s time, you can potentially see a total savings of $360.
Your refrigerator is probably the most-used appliance in your home, especially if you have a large family with constantly-hungry kids. New materials, insulation, and designs have created energy-efficient refrigerators that will save you money.
An energy-efficient fridge that earns the EPA’s Energy Star certification will be “about 9 percent more energy-efficient than models that meet the federal minimum standard for energy efficiency.”
Sun Frost refrigerators are considered to be some of the most energy-efficient refrigerators, using about 36% less energy than the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act standard.
The efficiency and savings you see will depend on some diligence on your part to ensure you buy the right energy-efficient refrigerator for you. Consider these tips when preparing to purchase:
- Measure the space available. There should be a clearance of at least 1 inch to ensure proper airflow for optimum efficiency.
- Determine the proper size for the needs of your family. Typically you will want about 4-6 cubic feet per adult in the household, but if you have hungry teens in the house, you may need more space.
- Compare EnergyGuide labels.
Of course, the most energy-efficient dryer is Mother Nature. Line drying your laundry can save you about $200/year, again depending on the efficiency of your current dryer.
An energy-efficient dryer with the Energy Star certification will use about 20% less energy than comparable dryers. Remember, higher efficiency does not mean lower functionality. A dryer with the Energy Star certification must perform the same or better than other dryers that are not as efficient.
Other Energy Star Appliances
The Energy Star certification does not stop with an energy-efficient dryer and an energy-efficient fridge. Other appliances that meet the Energy Star requirements include:
Other Energy Star Products
Want to keep the energy and money savings going? Consider purchasing and switching to Energy Star certified products whenever possible. A few of the most common products you can consider are:
- Computers and monitors
- Water heaters
- Building products
Energy Star for a Sustainable Future
Help create a sustainable energy future by using the most energy-efficient appliances and products available, and by contacting Kiwi Energy for the most environmentally-friendly energy partnership.