How Much Power Do My Appliances Use?
Written on: August 13, 2021
As the peak of summer arrives here in PA, you’ll probably find your electric bill spiking with temperatures. That makes sense, considering that about half your electric use comes from running your home cooling system your home during the dog days of summer.
But where does the rest of the bill come from?
The simple answer to that question is that it comes from running the rest of the appliances in your home. Since some devices consume more electricity than others, it’s a good idea to learn how much energy is used to run common appliances.
Check out this list, courtesy of the U.S. Department of Energy:
||Estimated annual cost
|TV (40”or larger)
As you can see, the kilowatt hours can add up quickly. The question is, what can you do to keep them as low as possible? Here are some tips.
Washing Machines and Dryers
With even the most efficient models of each installed, you could be paying more than $100 a year in electricity just to keep your clothes clean.
To reduce energy use when washing and drying laundry,
- Choose high efficiency appliances – When you shop for a new washer or dryer – or any major appliance – look for the ENERGY STAR® label. ENERGY STAR products usually exceed minimum federal standards – often by a lot.
- Air dry your clothes – As you can see in the chart about, dryers use a tremendous amount of energy. Air dry your clothes outdoors, or set up a collapsible drying rack inside your home.
- Wash in cold water – Nearly 20 percent of the average home’s energy bill comes from heating water. Today’s detergents are designed to work in water of any temperature – take advantage by using your washing machine’s cold setting.
The average refrigerator uses an estimated 657 kWh of electricity a year, typically costing you $80 or more per year to run. By maximizing your refrigerator’s efficiency, you can take a bite out of your energy bill.
- Replace your old refrigerator – Old fridges are electricity guzzlers. If you’ve had one for a while, replace it with a super-efficient ENERGY STAR®-rated model.
- Set an optimal temperature – For each additional degree of refrigeration output, about six percent more electricity is used. A setting of between 37 and 40 degrees will keep your food cold enough to stay fresh without making your equipment work harder than necessary.
- Choose your location carefully – Avoid placing your refrigerator next to a heat source such as an oven or radiator, or even in direct sunlight. Always ensure that your refrigerator has enough ventilation so that the compressor does not end up running continuously.
Central Air Conditioning
The average three-ton air conditioner operates at around 3.5 kWh while in use; if you run it for nine hours a day during the summer, it would cost you nearly $500 per year.
To reduce your air conditioning bills,
- Set a reasonable thermostat temperature – Remember, it’s the difference between the temperature inside and outside your house that makes you feel cool, not the absolute temperature on your thermostat. Aim for 78 degrees for the best balance of energy efficiency and comfort.
- Change/Clean air filters regularly – A clogged air filter could add 10 to 15 percent to your home cooling bill – far more than the cost of a new filter. It will also rob you of comfort, cause wear and tear on your equipment, and reduce your indoor air quality.
- Use ceiling fans – Moving air feels cooler than still air; by using ceiling fans to circulate air, you can drop your thermostat by three or four degrees without sacrificing comfort.
- Avoid running heat-producing appliances – Using ovens and clothes dryers during the summer creates an extra heating load for your A/C to overcome; consider air drying, which will also cut your electric bills, and cooking outdoors.
- Service your cooling equipment – A home air conditioner will lose about five percent efficiency each year it goes without service – meaning that a professional tune-up will virtually pay for itself in energy saving alone. On top of that, you’ll protect your warranty, extend the life of your equipment, and have a more comfortable home.
Treat yourself to new appliances that work great and will save you money, too! Visit the Ace-Robbins showroom in Tunkhannock to see our full range of washers, dryers, refrigerators, and other appliances from trusted brands like Amana, KitchenAid, Maytag, and Whirlpool.