Energy-Efficient Appliances Worth the Extra Cost
If you’re in the market for a new appliance, don’t let the price tag of the latest energy-efficient models scare you away. While they can cost up to $500 more than standard models, many of them pay for themselves over their 12- to 20-year life spans, according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).
When shopping for appliances, look for the blue “Energy Star” label. To earn this label, appliances must exceed government efficiency guidelines. Also, look for the Federal Trade Commission’s yellow “Energy Guide” label, which provides estimated annual energy consumption for an appliance based on typical usage.
According to ACEEE spokesperson Jennifer Thorne, refrigerators have greatly reduced their energy consumption. High-efficiency units can run on less than $40 a year, compared to older models built before 1988, which may use up to $200 annually in electricity.
Refrigerators with freezers on top or bottom tend to be about 7 percent to 13 percent more efficient than side-by-side models, Thorne said. An automatic ice maker in the door can reduce efficiency by up to 20 percent.
Washers & Dryers
Buying an energy-efficient washing machine and clothes dryer is another smart move, Thorne said. High-efficiency washers pay for themselves in energy savings, and also save up to 8,000 gallons of water per year. In dryers, temperature or moisture gauges can decrease drying time, thus saving energy.
If you need a new appliance today, but money is tight, take advantage of our low loan rates. Apply at any branch, by phone, or online.