October 27, 2011

Washers and Dryers: Now More Energy Efficient and with More Options

One hundred years ago, doing the laundry was an all-day affair and it often was back-breaking work for those who had to do it. As technology advanced, manufacturers designed washers and dryers that took much of the sweat out of wash day and left people with a lot more time to do other things. More recently, washers and dryers have gone “high-tech?? and are far more energy efficient than they were 20 years ago.

As this recent Washington Post article points out, washers and dryers have became the “trophy appliances?? for many Americans: “By 2000, the power laundry room had joined the kitchen as another place for trophy appliances. Consumers who needed to replace old washers embraced the innovations, despite the higher price, realizing long-term savings from lower utility and water bills, better cleaning and improved fabric care. The streamlined washing machines had growing numbers of special cycles and options. You could buy a coordinating dryer that used moisture sensors to dry clothes that came out already less wet from HE washers.?? Furthermore, manufacturers are developing “smart?? washers and dryers that could be connected to the Smart Grid and communicate with the utility company to operate during off-peak hours.

By purchasing an ENERGY STAR washer, you could save over $135 per year on your utility bills. In fact, in 1990, the average consumption for a washer was 2.67 kilowatt hours (kWh) per cycle and one manufactured in 2010 consumes only .66 kWh per cycle – a 75 percent decrease!  Click here to find ENERGY STAR qualified washers. Additionally, you may be eligible for a rebate for an energy efficient model.


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