As we all know, once the new year hits so do frigid winter snow storms! While trying to survive in the seemingly arctic tundra, we are also trying to stay on top of our utility bills. In addition to heating your cozy home you are faced with astronomical energy bills. The major appliances in your home – refrigerators, washers, and dryers all account for a big chunk of your utility bill. To make matters more complex, if your refrigerator or washing machines are more than a decade old, you’re spending a lot more on energy than you need to.
Today’s appliances don’t use energy the way that older models do because they must meet minimum federal energy efficiency standards.
These standards have narrowed over the years, so any new appliance you buy today has to use less energy than the model you’re replacing. For instance, if you purchase one of today’s most energy-efficient refrigerators, it will use less than half the energy of a model that is 12 years old or even older! Pretty cool, right?
Next time you are at any store that sells appliances, simply look for these labels and compare to find which is best suited for your home:
Look for the Energy Star® label. Energy Star models are the most energy efficient in any
product category, exceeding the energy efficiency minimums set by the federal government. When you are shopping for new appliances remember to look for the Energy Star label. This is a must if you want to save that money and energy! In other areas throughout the country, utilities and state governments try to make spending a little extra on your new appliances worth it by offering rebates on Energy Star-rated models. Check http://www.energystar.gov to see what the Energy Star Label looks like and for more details.
Use the EnergyGuide label. Some salespeople might tell you that a model
you’re looking at is the most efficient because it has an EnergyGuide label. This is not necessarily the end all be all. All new appliances must carry the EnergyGuide label, either on the appliance itself or on the packaging. The label allows you to compare the typical annual energy consumption and operating cost of different models of any type of appliance you considering adding to your home. See what the Energy Guide Label looks like!
Remember, size matters!
Get the right size. Make sure the product you’re buying is sufficient enough for your home. Over-sized air conditioners, water heaters and refrigerators waste energy and money – exactly what we are trying to steer clear of! Do your research before purchasing any new appliance or consult a representative educated in energy efficient appliances.
Again, we are trying to be cost AND energy efficient – keep it all natural:
Whenever possible choose appliances that run on natural gas rather than electricity. Typically, it’s more efficient to burn natural gas where it’s needed in your home, than to burn it at a power plant, convert the heat to electricity and then send the electricity over wires to your house. Look for dryers, stoves and water heaters that run on natural gas.
Think long term. Many of the most energy-efficient appliances cost more initially, but they’ll save you money in the long run. A more efficient appliance eventually pays for itself; lower monthly utility bills over the lifetime of the appliance balance or even cancel out for that matter a higher purchase price. In addition, the latest resource-efficient clothes washers and dishwashers not only save electricity, they also use a lot less water and can reduce your water bill.
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