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Hamilton Furnishing and Decorating - Buying an Energy-Efficient Washer-Dryer

Here are some tips for running or buying an energy efficient washer:

  • Match water level and temperature settings on your washer to the size of your load. Don't completely fill the whole tub for a small load. Newer "smart" machines have automatic water level settings which adjust to load size.
  • Call your water utility and ask them how "hard" or "soft" your water is. Adjust the recommended clothing detergent amount as recommended. In the appliance's manuals
  • About 90% of the energy required for your washing machine is used in heating the water. For most washing applications, warm wash and cold rinse are just as effective as hot wash and warm rinse. The rinse temperature doesn't effect the quality of the cleaning.
  • Oversudsing makes your machine work harder and use more energy. Avoid using too much detergent.
  • The newer front load washers require much less water, hold larger loads and save energy in reduced water heating. More info

Here are some tips for running or buying an energy efficient dryer

  • Lint build up greatly reduces efficiency. Clean the dryer lint screen after each use.
  • Overloading the dryer lengthens drying time, which should typically be 40 minutes to one hour per load
  • Dry multiple loads back to back, so that ambient in the dryer is used bring the next load(s) up to drying temperature, speeding trying and reducing energy needed.
  • Keep the dryer exhaust vent on the outside of the house clean and free of cobwebs and lint. The exterior moveable shutters are designed to prevent cold air, heat and insects from entering the vent when the dryer is not operating, and should move easily.
  • Use the 'perma press' (cool-down) cycle, which uses no heat in the last few minutes, but dries using cool air blowing through the tumbling clothes.
  • A clothesline or indoor drying rack can save energy and reduce fabric wear on your garments (the lint on the lint screen comes from your clothing being broken down).
  • When buying a new dryer, some "smart" models have a sensor to automatically stops the dryer once the clothes are dry. Dryers with a 'cool-down' period also save energy.
  • If you use dryer sheets in your clothes dryer, he lint filter should be washed with hot soapy water twice a year to removed coatings on the lint filter which can reduce dryer efficiency.
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