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Energy Efficient Appliances

Refrigerators, dishwashers, clothes washers/dryers, ovens, microwaves, computers, televisions, DVD/Blu-Ray players, and other household appliances and electronics all contribute to household energy usage in different amounts. There are certain things you can do to reduce your home appliance and electronic energy use:

  • Unplug appliances and electronics: Some appliances pull energy even when they are not in use — otherwise known as phantom energy. Unplug appliances that are not in use to avoid unnecessary energy consumption. You can also utilize power strips to turn multiple appliances or electronics off with one button.

  • Clean and maintain appliances and electronics: This could be simple as cleaning your microwave or stovetop or blowing out your laundry exhaust vent. Be sure to perform regular maintenance and cleaning of all your appliances.

  • Upgrade appliances: Getting a retro appliance may look cool, but they are often outdated, impractical, and inefficient. Major appliances like a dishwasher should be replaced every 10 to 15 years and washers and dryers every 8-10 years.

  • Update or upgrade electronics: It’s a good idea to keep your electronics up to date to help them run efficiently. For example, Apple comes out with IOS software updates frequently to improve efficiency and preserve batteries. Over time electronics like phone batteries lose their ability to effectively maintain a charge, which means is takes more energy to keep them working.

  • Use eco-settings: Many appliances are used with eco-settings. Utilize these if your appliances are equipped with them. If they are not, think about upgrading appliances with eco-settings. Electronics often have power-savings modes as well, like reducing your screen brightness or killing apps to save battery.

  • Only run full loads: When you are cleaning dishes or doing laundry, avoid running loads that aren’t full. When you wait till you have a full load, you can save the amount of energy used by reducing loads.

  • Avoid using appliances and electronics whenever possible: If it’s a hot day outside and you’re doing laundry, avoid throwing your laundry in the dryer and hang them up outside to dry in the sun. If your dishwasher has a heat drying option, choose to dry dishes by hand or let them air dry instead.

  • Keep refrigerator/freezer full: When your fridge or freezer is stocked with refrigerated or frozen items, it helps your fridge/freezer maintain its temperature settings.

Making sure to unplug or turn off electronics and appliances can make a world of difference in your energy consumption. Additionally, if you are looking for new and energy-efficient appliances and electronics, look for the Energy Star label.


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