Typically, conservation of energy goes hand in hand with conservation of money. Sure, your initial cost most likely will be greater. But, the long term monetary gain almost always offsets that. The additional benefit in buying energy saving appliances is they are usually made more durable. Thus, they last longer and need replaced less often. With that said, they need repaired less too. Most newer electrical appliances come with an energy guide yellow tag. Unless you live next door to me, take the big black dollar figure and double it. Why? Because virtually no one pays 10.65 cents per kilowatt hour that’s why. Indiana has some of the cheapest rates in the nation. We burn Coal! With the continued talk about carbon emissions my rate is going to go up too!

Lets look at a few examples.


Side-by-Side refrigerators always use more electricity than a bottom freezer model. Though the door ice and water uses additional energy too.

HVAC System.

Buy the most efficient model you can afford. The new federal mandate for Air Conditioner is Seer 13. To understand what SEER is have a look at this site.  On the site is a very nice life cycle operating cost chart. If you notice the cost basis for the chart is $0.11/kWh. The life of the equipment is assumed to be 12 years. Where do you think rates will be in twelve years?

Standard Electric Tank Water Heater.

These tank water heaters are virtually all the same. What you need to do is buy a water heater blanket. Lowes sells a R10 for only about $20. The water heater blanket could pay for itself in one year!
What we should be on the lookout for are Hot Water Heat Pumps. As much as I think everyone should have a solar hot water heat, including myself, many of us have home owners association that would not be happy about the “appearance” of them on our roofs. (I have not gone down that road yet. But, I may just give in to the next best thing.)

Clothes Washer

Two words – Front Load. They use a fraction of the water that top loads do. Thus, you have to  heat much less water. They also spin the clothes so fast the cloths come out damp and need half the drying time.

Next time you are in the market for a new major appliance, do a little research. You will find that it can pay hefty dividends years down the road.