On September 15, 2014 the EPA released brand new energy efficiency standards for new appliances. Machines that were made and purchased prior to the 9/15/14 date will have incorrect info on their Energy Labels. There is virtually no way to tell by looking at the Energy Guide Label attached to the appliance because they are not dated or notated in any way. The only way to know is to reference the energy Star website www.energystar.gov and look under the “> Earning the ENERGY STAR means a product meets strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the US Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Energy..Did you know that the average home spends about $2,000 on energy bills every year? Change to appliances that have earned the ENERGY STAR, and you can save $75 a year in energy costs, while saving the environment.
The state of Maryland is currently offering rebates on specific models of Energy Star washers ($75 – $100), clothes dryers ($50), refrigerators ($100 – $150), and window air conditioners ($30). See our store or the EPA web site for details because there are very few if any products in production at any given time that actually meet the revised standards. Save Energy, Save Money
When buying an appliance, remember that it has two price tags: what you pay to take it home and what you pay for the energy and water it uses. ENERGY STAR qualified appliances incorporate advanced technologies that use 10–50% less energy and water than standard models. The money you save on your utility bills can more than make up for the cost of a more expensive but more efficient ENERGY STAR model.
For top performance, premium features, and energy savings, look for energy-efficient clothes washers, refrigerators, dishwashers, room air conditioners and dehumidifiers that have earned the ENERGY STAR. This mark appears on the EnergyGuide label.
More information can be found on www.energystar.govTopClothes Washers
An ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washer can save you $550 in operating costs over its lifetime compared to a regular clothes washer. ENERGY STAR qualified washers are also better for the environment because lowering energy and water use means less air pollution from power plants and less water going to waste. More information can be found on www.energystar.gov
Beyond ENERGY STAR, there also are some additional features that can maximize your energy efficiency. Front-loaders conserve water and energy by 40-50%! Washing full loads and washing with cold water as much as possible, pushes this figure towards the high end of the scale. If you currently have a top-loader, utilize a range of features available for adjusting temperature, selecting load size and varying cycles. Exercising your discretion with these features can boost the conservation impact of your machine. Information found on www.greenlivingideas.comRefrigerators & Freezers
ENERGY STAR qualified refrigerators require about half as much energy as models manufactured before 1993. ENERGY STAR qualified refrigerators provide energy savings without sacrificing the features you want.
ENERGY STAR qualified refrigerator models use high efficiency, modulating compressors, improved insulation, and more precise temperature and defrost mechanisms such as temperature sensors to improve operating efficiency. ENERGY STAR qualified refrigerator models use at least 20% less energy than required by current federal standards and 40% less energy than the conventional models sold in 2001.
Many ENERGY STAR qualified refrigerator models include automatic ice-maker and through-the-door ice dispensers. Qualified models are also available with top, bottom, and side-by-side freezers.
ENERGY STAR qualified freezer models use at least 10% less energy than required by current federal standards. Qualified freezer models are available in three configurations:
- Upright freezers with automatic defrost
- Upright freezers with manual defrost
- Chest freezers with manual defrost only
ENERGY STAR compact refrigerators and freezers use at least 20% less energy than required by current federal standards. Compacts are models with volumes less than 7.75 cubic feet.
Remember, saving energy prevents pollution. In most households, the refrigerator is the single biggest energy consuming kitchen appliance. Replacing a refrigerator bought in 1990 with a new ENERGY STAR qualified model would save enough energy to light the average household for nearly four months.You can reduce the amount of energy your refrigerator or freezer uses, whether with a standard or an ENERGY STAR qualified model:
- Position your refrigerator away from a heat source such as an oven, a dishwasher, or direct sunlight from a window.
- To allow air to circulate around the condenser coils, leave a space between the wall or cabinets and the refrigerator or freezer and keep the coils clean.
- Make sure the door seals are airtight.
- Keep your refrigerator between 35 and 38 degrees Fahrenheit and your freezer at 0 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Minimize the amount of time the refrigerator door is open.
- Recycle older or second refrigerators.
More information can be found on www.energystar.gov
Refrigerators are the mass-energy consumers in your household, as they’re in use 24 hours a day. If investing in an ENERGY STAR-labeled fridge is not possible at this time, set your fridge thermostat around 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Also dust off or vacuum your machine’s condenser coils twice a year for increased efficiency.Refrigerator Annual Operating Cost
Determine your Refrigerator Annual Operating Cost: Click HereTop
Replacing a dishwasher manufactured before 1994 with an ENERGY STAR qualified dishwasher can save you more than $30 a year in utility costs. ENERGY STAR qualified dishwashers use at least 41% less energy than the federal minimum standard for energy consumption. ENERGY STAR qualified dishwashers use much less water than conventional models. Saving water helps protect our nation’s water supplies.
Compared to new conventional models, an ENERGY STAR qualified dishwasher saves about $90 over its lifetime.You can save extra energy while washing dishes, whether with a standard or an ENERGY STAR model:
- Run your dishwasher with a full load. Most of the energy used by a dishwasher goes to heat water. Since you can’t decrease the amount of water used per cycle, fill your dishwasher to get the most from the energy used to run it.
- Avoid using the heat-dry, rinse-hold and pre-rinse features. Instead use your dishwasher’s air-dry (no heat – drip dry) option.
More information can be found on www.energystar.gov
Dishwashers are much more effective at cleaning and much more water efficient than washing by hand, the more energy-efficient units come with settings that allow you a great amount of control over energy expenditure. Most of the energy used by this process goes to heating water before it even gets to your machine.Here are a couple of tips:
- Always wash a full load and select the shortest cycle appropriate.
- Don’t utilize the pre-rinse function on your machine unless necessary
DryersHere are some tips to save energy during drying:
Dryers are not currently part of the ENERGY STAR program, as energy consumption is similar for all models across the board. If you’re not in a position (or climate area) to set up an old-fashioned clothesline for sun-drying.
- Find a model with automatic shut-off, or one that alerts you when loads are done.
- Designate one or two days per week “laundry days” and string loads one after another in order to maximize the heat left over from previous loads.
- The chest freezer logic applies here as well—place dryers in a warm part of the house so that less energy is required to generate heat
OvensHere are some tips to optimize energy use:
While gas stoves are definitely more efficient than electric, they can prove to be a hazardous nuisance to those with respiratory sensitivities.
- When heating water cover your pots and pans to trap heat and reduce cooking time.
- Turn off burners shortly before cook time is over—the burners will remain hot enough to complete your culinary masterpiece.
- Use pans that completely cover a burner to maximize your heat energy usage.
- Always preheat your oven
- Open the door to check on the cooking process as few times as possible to prevent the temperature swings