Hints & HELP!
Energy with Your Appliances
by Lorene Bartos, Extension Educator
This article appeared in the January
11, 2004 Lincoln Journal Star Newspaper.
you know in a typical U.S. home, appliances are responsible
for about 20% of the energy bills? Water heating uses 14%
of the energy in homes it is the third largest energy
expense in the U.S. households. Clothes washers, dryers
and dishwashers save time and personal energy, but they
use natural resource energy to heat the water used to clean
our clothes and dishes. In fact, almost all the energy used
by clothes washers and dishwashers is for heating the water.
So, how can we reduce this energy? This can be done by reducing
the amount of hot water used and this in the end will also
it comes to laundry and dishwashing, the best energy-saving
advice is to:
Do it right the first time, so you dont have to
re-wash clothes and dishes.
Do it efficiently, so you use the least amount of water
tells us the average household washes about 50 pounds of
laundry per week, a typical household washes more than 6,000
articles of clothing in machines each year and the average
person generates well over a quarter of a ton of dirty clothes
these facts it important to keep in mind these suggestions
from the Soap and Detergent Association for energy efficient
Pretreat or presoak stains and heavy soils before washing
to get the best stain removal without using extra hot
water or re-washing.
and follow label directions for all laundry products
with the recommended amount of detergent. Use slightly
more in hard water, for larger loads or for heavily-soiled
a wash time and cycle suitable for the type of load.
(Check your washer use and care guide.)
a full load, but dont overload the washer.
the water level to the load size. For examples, with
a smaller load use a lower water level setting.
the best cleaning and energy-savings, wash most loads
in warm water and rinse all loads in cold water. Some
lightly-soiled loads can be washed in cold water.
the washer has a water return system, reuse the wash
water for additional loads. Start with hot water, lightly-soiled
items and the recommended amount of detergent. Add more
detergent for each additional load.
a high spin speed for highly absorbent items, such as
towels and sweat shirts, to help reduce drying time.
The energy it takes to spin water out is less than the
energy your drying uses to dry it out.
drying suggestions are also helpful:
Separate lightweight and heavyweight items for faster
and more uniform drying.
full loads. Small loads waste energy.
the dryer while its still warm from a previous load
to utilize the residual heat.
the dryers lint screen after each load. Lint build
up can increase drying time by limiting air flow.
Dont overload the dryer. The load should tumble
freely for fast, wrinkle-free drying.
Dont add wet items to a partially dried load.
Dont overdry. Besides wasting energy, overdrying
can give a stiff feel to some items and cause shrinkage
Dont let garments remain in the dryer after it has
shut off. This can cause wrinkling - especially in permanent
press articles, making ironing necessary.
save money and energy by doing your laundry efficiently.
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