Appliances

10 ways to Green Your Appliances

Indispensable for perpetually plugged-in modern life, appliances—air conditioners, refrigerators, washers and dryers, gobble up energy and are made from large doses of earth-unfriendly materials. Fortunately, there are ways of choosing efficient devices and diminishing the toxic burden.

  1. Choose ENERGY STAR products

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    ENERGY STAR options must meet energy-saving standards and are a straightforward, reliable way to reduce your energy requirements.

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  2. Maintain your air conditioner

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    An annual tune-up and cleaning of all parts of your AC system will increase operating efficiency.

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  3. Choose a tankless water heater

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    These innovative appliances, which qualify for a tax credit, use a heat exchanger to rapidly heat your water on the spot, reducing the need for a large tank.

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  4. Air-dry your wet laundry

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    ENERGY STAR doesn't rate dryers since they all use comparably high amounts of energy. By not using a dryer—or using it less often—you not only lengthen the life of your clothes since it's gentler, but you also save money and lower your carbon emissions every year.

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  5. Choose a dryer with a moisture sensor

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    Unlike a timed cycle, the sensor will automatically shut off the dryer when your clothes are dry. This will help you use the least amount of energy needed when drying your clothes.

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  6. Set your refrigerator temperature to 37-40 degrees

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    Don't keep your fridge too frigid! To prevent wasting energy and your food from spoiling, it is important to set your refrigerator’s temperature properly.

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  7. Wash clothes in cold water

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    Ninety percent of the energy that goes into the washing part of laundering clothes is spent on heating the water.

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  8. Buy a front-loading washing machine

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    Horizontal axis washers or front-loaders use nearly 40 percent less water and 50 percent less energy than top-loaders.

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  9. Buy a water heater insulation blanket

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    Providing your water heater with a blanket can reduce between 4 and 9 percent of your water heater's energy consumption.

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  10. Recycle used appliances

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    Spent appliances often contain toxic leftovers like ozone-damaging refrigerants that are best not found in landfills.

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