On average, the typical U.S. family will spend around $2,200 annually on their energy bills. Their use of larger appliances, such as dishwashers and ovens, accounts for a large chunk of this number. By replacing old appliances with newer, energy-efficient options, you could save hundreds -- maybe even thousands -- of dollars per year. As a homeowner, however, you’re probably concerned about the cost of a new appliance. Your concerns are valid: a new appliance is a big investment right off the bat. However, you can count on recouping the costs over time.
Saving You Money
A brand-new refrigerator, water heater, or dishwasher is a significant expense for any home. Energy-efficient models cost less to operate, but have a higher initial investment amount. You’ll need to research the upfront, maintenance, and operating expenses of any new home appliance before making your purchase.
Unfortunately, most homeowners take the leap before performing proper research. With payment periods lasting for years rather than months, owners should research their savings beforehand. If you spring for the first efficient appliance you find, you could end up paying more money than you’re saving. If you’re not sure how to start your research, you can use the Department of Energy’s resources to determine which energy-efficient appliances are worth your time and investment.
Replace Now or Wait?
Once you’ve decided to improve the overall energy efficiency of your home, you’ll need to determine the best time to buy. You may choose to either replace a well-functioning appliance now or wait until that machine dies, and then take the opportunity to invest in something new. In most cases, you should wait until your current appliances begin to die before buying replacements. It’s important to get the most out of your investment, even if your current appliances are not the most energy-efficient appliances on the market.
When you finally decide to make a purchase, look for the Energy Guide sticker on whatever appliances you research.