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AHAM Verifide, Energy Star, Energy Guide: What they mean

AHAM Verifide®. Energy Star. Energy Guide. What do those appliance labels mean?

They aren’t just labels. If you take a closer look, you’ll get valuable information on how much energy the appliance uses, and how much you might be saving.

AHAM Verifide: This signifies that the appliance meets certain attributes of the AHAM Verifide program, including volume, energy, and for some products, performance. All products that carry the AHAM Verifide mark have been randomly selected and independently tested against rigorous federal energy test procedures. You’ll find the mark on clothes washers and dryers, dehumidifiers, dishwashers, refrigerators and freezers, room air conditioners and room air cleaners. AHAM Verifide is a voluntary program, meaning appliance manufacturers decide whether or not to participate.

Energy Star: You’ll find the blue ENERGY STAR label on certain major appliances like clothes washers and dryers, dishwashers, dehumidifiers, refrigerators, freezers and refrigerator-freezers, as well as lighting, residential heating and cooling systems. The label, launched by the Department of Energy in 1992, means that the products have been independently tested in labs to ensure they meet certain energy-efficiency criteria. AHAM has been approved by the Department of Energy as a verification body for ENERGY STAR products. This means AHAM can administer testing to ensure that products seeking the ENERGY STAR designation meet the program’s criteria. Like AHAM Verifide, participation in ENERGY STAR is voluntary for manufacturers.

Energy Guide: The yellow Energy Guide label provides a snapshot of how much energy the appliance uses. You’ll get an estimated yearly operating cost compared to other models and an estimate of how many kilowatts the appliance uses each year. The manufacturer, model number and capacity are listed. Energy Guide labels may also contain the ENERGY STAR label if the product meets those criteria. The Federal Trade Commission requires Energy Guide labels to be put on clothes washers, refrigerators, freezers, water heaters, dishwashers, room air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, heat pumps and pool heaters. Manufacturers are required to test their products using Department of Energy procedures and report the results to the FTC.

Buying energy efficient products is just one step you can take to reduce your energy costs. Need more ideas? Take a look at AHAM’s energy saving tips.

Save Money and Help the Environment with these Energy Saving Tips

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Everyone would like to use less energy and reduce their monthly electricity bill. AHAM has assembled some quick and easy tips to help you reduce the amount of energy your appliances use. Every bit adds up.

  • If you are replacing your refrigerator, do not use the old refrigerator as a second refrigerator because it won’t yield energy savings. Properly recycle the appliance. The store where you purchased the new refrigerator likely will pick up and dispose of your old one for no charge.  You can also visit the ENERGY STAR website for information about their Responsible Appliance Disposal program.
  • Allow hot foods to cool before placing them in the refrigerator, and always cover foods that may release moisture in the refrigerator.
  • Limit opening the refrigerator and freezer doors.  Label foods or use clear food storage bags to easily identify foods.
  • Scrape, but do not pre-rinse, dishes before putting them in the dishwasher.  Dishwashers do a great job of cleaning soiled dishes.
  • Take advantage of your dishwasher’s “eco?? option that reduces water use, or use the no-heat air dry feature.
  • Use the proper load size setting for each load of laundry or use the automatic setting if your clothes washer has it to ensure you’re not using more water than necessary. Also, use cold water settings whenever possible.
  • Always clean the lint filter on the clothes dryer after each use.  A clogged filter will reduce dryer performance.

How do you save energy at home?  If you have energy saving tips, share them with us!