For most consumers, when it comes to replacing appliances, one of their primary concerns is how much it will cost to operate them. Over the past several decades, appliance manufacturers have developed technologies that have drastically reduced appliance energy consumption, which has resulted in lower electricity bills for consumers. For example, in 1991, an average dishwasher consumed 2.67 kilowatt hours (kWh) per cycle and in 2010, the average consumption for a dishwasher is 1.37 kWh – a 45 percent decrease. In 1990, a typical household refrigerator consumed 916 kWh per year, and by 2010 that had decreased to 462 kWh per year – that’s nearly a 50 percent decrease! Based on the national average electricity prices, that means replacing a refrigerator from 1990 with a new unit of average efficiency will save your household over $100 per year!
Purchasing an ENERGY STAR unit will save even more energy and utility costs. Use the ENERGY STAR calculator to determine how much money you will save by replacing your refrigerator. Also, look at the rebate calculator to see what is available in your zip code. These rebates can help offset the initial purchase price of a new unit. There may even be a bounty available in your area for turning in an older working unit. See AHAM’s database of verified refrigerators to check on the energy usage of the latest models.
A recent article from NewJersey.com provides a good overview of the ENERGY STAR program and how you can cut your utility bills when you make your next appliance purchase.