How Much Is Your Laundry Really Costing You?
October 17, 2016
Clothes dryers are one of the most common appliances in a household, and with most families using it multiple times a week, it can be a real drain on your electricity usage. According to ENERGY STAR (the leader in energy efficient certification for appliances), drying a single load of laundry uses about 769 kwh of electricity
. This is equivalent to charging your phone 1398 times in a day! The average family dries about 9 loads of laundry a week, which, as you can imagine, uses a ton of electricity.
However, we all need clean and dry clothes. Luckily, there are some easy solutions to these concerns that don't involve boycotting laundry chores:
- Investing in an ENERGY STAR certified dryer. There are many different styles and types of dryers that are ENERGY STAR certified, meaning you're very likely to find one that suits your specific needs. A certified dryer will use up to 20% less energy than a traditional model. These dryers limit their electricity using a sensor that recognizes when the clothes are dry and then stops, rather than relying on the guesswork of a preset timer.
- Invest in a clothesline. While the classic outdoor pulley-style model is probably what springs to mind, there are lots of indoor and outdoor styles to choose from. You don't need to depend on the seasons to use a clothesline -- an indoor clothesline will be just as efficient. These screw into the wall and can easily be moved around. You can also use a drying rack that folds up when not in use (no holes in the wall!). Clotheslines save you money on electricity usage and air drying is gentler on your clothing, making them last longer. Never shrink a sweater in the dryer again!
If you just can't let go of using your dryer, here are some best practices to keep your use as efficient as possible:
- Only use your dryer when you have a full load, but try not to overstuff it so it doesn't run longer than it needs to. Balance is key!
- Make sure your clothes are properly wrung out before putting them in the dryer. There's no point in paying for the extra electricity to dry what you could easily and quickly wring out by hand.
- Try using a wool dryer ball instead of dryer sheets- they absorb excess water and take some of the workload off your dryer. You can even scent them if you like, or keep them all natural. Bonus: They're gentle on your delicates, too.
Whether you choose to hang dry your clothes, upgrade your appliances or make your dryer habits more efficient, The Energy Store hopes to help you make the most energy efficient, cost-effective choices available. Happy laundering!