If you’re looking to make yours a more sustainable home, the laundry is a good place to start. The humble laundry has some sizeable appliances that could potentially guzzle up your energy bill. But you can get one step ahead on your sustainability journey by choosing energy efficienct laundry appliances – and making simple tweaks to how you use them. Here are some eco-friendly ways to reduce your laundry’s carbon footprint.
How to choose an eco-friendly washer
- Front-loader washing machines are usually more energy and water efficient (and use less detergent!) than their top-loader counterparts.
- Look for models with sustainability-friendly functionality. Load sensors allow you to wash a half-load of clothes, using less water than a regular wash. A delay start function means you can program your machine to wash your clothes during off-peak electricity rate times
Get more out of your wash
- Up to 90% of the energy used by a washing machine goes toward heating the water. So when it’s wash time, wash in cold for an energy-efficient win.
- Only wash your clothes on a full load, as the machine uses the same amount of energy either way. Or, if you must run a smaller load of washing, use the half load sensor.
- If you have solar panels, run your washing during the day. You’ll be using energy directly from the sun, rather than the grid – so you can give yourself the eco-friendly tick of approval.
How to choose an eco-friendly dryer
- Take a look at different types of dryer technology. There’s several to choose from: vented, condenser, heat pump condenser, and gas powered. Although more expensive to buy outright of the four, the heat pump condenser comes out in front when you consider environmental impact and ongoing costs. This type of dryer works similarly to air coditioning, where energy is captured and reused by the machine. It’s both energy efficient and cheaper to run.
- Consider a model with auto-sensing capability. This clever tech will ensure your clothes don’t over-dry – better for your clothes durability and your energy bill.
Get more out of your dry cycle
- Clean the lint filter out before you dry your clothes. This helps your dryer use less energy.
- Make sure your washer thoroughly spin drys your clothes before you transfer them to your dryer, to save more on energy consumption.
- Beautiful sunny day? Consider ditching the dryer all together and hang your clothes outside. Sunshine is completely free, and as an added benefit, it can also kill dust mites and bacteria lurking in your clothes.
Washer and dryer combos – to buy or not to buy?
If you’re looking at a combination washer and dryer, here are some things to think about first. Washer dryer combos can be about as energy efficient as front loader washing machines. But try to look for heat pump models, rather than models that use water during the dry cycle. Some washer dryer combos can use excessive amounts of water during the dry phase, which isn’t helpful for your home’s water efficiency goals or bills.