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March 2015


Volume 62 Know When To Pull The Plug


Saying goodbye to an old friend can be daunting. But pulling the plug on an outdated refrigerator or dishwasher might save you money. That’s because new appliances are


A new refrigerator consumes 75 percent less energy than a 1970s model. Replace a vintage clothes washer and save $60 on utility bills and nearly 5,000 gallons of water a year, according to the Association of Home Appliance Man- ufacturers. Not every new appliance is a good bet, though. That’s why it’s important to always look for the ENERGY


- tunities to pull the plug!


Cleaning Kitchen, Laundry Costs In the laundry room, a full-sized ENERGY STAR-


compared to the 23 gallons used by a standard machine. During the machine’s lifetime, this saves 27,000 gallons of water.


Replace your kitchen’s classic refrigerator with an


$1,100 in lifetime energy costs. Today’s average refrigera- tor uses less energy than a continually lit 60-watt light bulb. Resist the urge to move the old refrigerator to the base- ment or the garage. Instead, say goodbye and recycle the energy-guzzler. Was your dishwasher built before 1994? If so, you’re paying an extra $40 a year on your utility bills compared to


Screen Savings sizes increase, energy consumption may also rise. You can


LED screens use 20 percent less energy than LCD TVs. Once you purchase a TV, calibrate it by adjusting the contrast and brightness to a moderate level. By default, new televisions are set to dynamic, high-contrast settings. This consumes more power than standard, lower-contrast settings.


Smart Settings


Attached to old appliances? You can still save with smart settings. For example, heating water creates the greatest expense when washing dishes or clothes. Set your water heater at 120 degrees and be sure your clothes washer or dishwasher is full whenever used.


Here are a few other ways to save without buying new appliances:


• NOT TOO COOL FOOD: In the kitchen, don’t keep your refrigerator or freezer too cold. Recommended tempera- tures are 37 to 40 degrees for the fresh food compart- ment and 5 degrees for the freezer section.


• TOAST, DON’T ROAST: Use toaster ovens or mi- crowave ovens for small meals rather than your large stovetop or oven. • AIR DRY DISHES: Use the dishwasher’s “eco” option or use a no-heat air dry feature. Scrape food pieces off the plates, rather than rinsing them. • COLD CLOTHES: In the laundry room, wash your clothes in cold water using cold-water detergents when- ever possible. Adjust load settings for smaller loads. • LOSE LINT: Clean the lint screen in the dryer after every


Sources: Energy Star, Consumer Electronics Association, Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers, U.S. Department of Energy, Natural Resources Defense Council


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