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Energy Efficient Appliances – Myth or Difference Makers?

In the on-going quest to find ways to cut energy bills, energy saving products can be very appealing. Saving energy just by using a different appliance, no extra effort required.

Obviously, manufacturers like to promote the efficiency of their products. It forms a large part of their marketing and it is as if ‘energy saving’ has become a brand in itself. What we really want to know is: do these products work and are they worth buying?

Do Energy Saving Appliances Work?

In short, yes. There are loads of products on the market that are the real-deal. Technology is constantly improving so that appliances run on less energy and also have energy saving features. Energy saving is high on Government and public agenda and manufacturers have responded. That said; energy efficiency and saving varies greatly between products so it can still be difficult to find value for money.

Is it Worth Buying Energy Saving Appliances?

It is estimated that around 40% of utility bills are made up from appliances used for entertainment or general housework. This means that savings are available on a huge portion of the bill. However, the main drawback of having better technology is the cost. They are more expensive than normal appliances. Deciding if it is worth purchasing an appliance comes with judging whether the extra cost can be recouped through potential savings.

To give an idea of potential savings:

  • Televisions: the running costs of modern TV’s can range between £4-£85. Generally, the bigger the set the more it costs. The tests were done on modern LED, LCD and plasma sets.
  • Tumble Dryers: Infamous energy guzzlers, running costs for a tumble dryer can range between £38 – £131 per year.
  • Fridge Freezers: yearly costs can vary between £14 – £102.
  • Computers: Laptops generally use 85% less energy than a desktop computer. This can save around £30 a year.

These statistics are for products currently on the market. If you have older appliances you could save even more money. Though energy saving devices are more expensive, it is important to think longer term. With many of these products it would not be unrealistic to make a saving of £40 per year. If the product then lasts ten years that would be a saving of £400, easily covering the extra initial cost.

Finding the best energy saving appliances

To make these possible savings a reality, research the products to ensure they live up to their energy saving credentials. The Which? website has comprehensive guide to all manner of products. In addition, the Energy Saving Trust has a similar guide of recommended products.

Both websites recommend best purchases but it is possible to make this judgement yourself.

According to EU legislation almost all household products must now display energy saving information. Appliances are rated on a scale from A+++ (the best) to G (the worst). It is vital to note that the rating can vary for different products. For example, the energy efficiency of fridge freezers is rated depending on its capacity. Yet, it is easier to make a larger fridge freezer more efficient. So a smaller fridge freezer rated B may actually use less energy that a larger one that is rated A+. Fortunately, the label also has a reading for Kwh displaying the energy consumption per hour or for devices such as washing machines, per cycle. Though it will depend on how the appliances are used to determine how much can be saved, the labelling system will help compare models and sizes to find what works best for your home.

Energy Saving Appliances: Difference Makers

Energy saving appliances are not a myth. However, savings will not just materialise by purchasing the products. It is crucial to find the appliance that would work best for you and use it in an energy efficient way. Using the best products in a conscientious way will not only be a difference maker; but the difference could be pretty substantial.

By Michael Hallam

1 Comment to Energy Efficient Appliances – Myth or Difference Makers?

  1. Fabien's Gravatar Fabien
    April 14, 2013 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

    Hi,thanks for your tips. Have you ever heard about solar panels that capture hot air just between the roof and the solar panels and that can blow this hot air inside your home ?

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