This President’s Day, people will flock to stores for sales on appliances, electronics, and other home goods. As you’re comparing products, consider energy-efficient models, which will save you money and help protect the planet—without sacrificing functionality or comfort.
At Smarterhouse.org, we want to help you shop with efficiency in mind. Our site includes energy-saving advice and lists the most efficient appliance models, based on a score developed by Enervee. Here are some tips for shopping smart, even on a budget.
- Appliances cost more than the ticket price. Think of an appliance’s list price like a down payment, because you’ll also pay for that appliance’s monthly energy use. Since most appliances last an average of 10 to 20 years, the cheapest sticker price may not always be the most cost-effective option.
- Outdated appliances cost more than you think. Even if your old appliances aren’t broken, they’re still costing you. For example, refrigerators more than 10 years old cost an extra $110 per year. Energystar.gov offers a Flip Your Fridge Calculator that allows you to visualize your energy savings.
- Read EnergyGuide labels. They list the annual operating cost and energy use of a product compared to similar models. They help consumers estimate the lifetime cost of owning an appliance, based on its make, model, and size.
- Shop ENERGY STAR®. Its label means that a product exceeds federal efficiency standards. For example, ENERGY STAR washing machines use about 20% less energy than traditional models, and refrigerators use 15% less. Dishwashers use half as much water per cycle as older units. Energystar.gov lists the most efficient products and whether they qualify for local rebates.
- Shopping for the kitchen? If you’re in the market for an electric oven, look for one with induction cooktops that typically use about 30% less energy than standard coils. If you like hot drinks, invest in an electric kettle for faster and more efficient water boiling.
- Don’t forget about your computer. ENERGY STAR doesn’t apply solely for cooking or cleaning. Certified office equipment can reduce energy use by up to 75%. Consider switching your desktop for a more efficient laptop. ENERGY STAR computers use 30-65% less energy than standard models.
Even if you’re not splurging on new appliances, you can still save energy at home. After all, appliances are only efficient if we use them efficiently. Here are some tips on how to save energy and make the most of your appliances. For more tips and tricks, check out Smarterhouse.org. Happy President’s Day!