When moving into a house, you inherit the appliances of the previous owner (or maybe from the owner before the previous owner).
One of my main priorities when I move into my first house in June will be to begin replacing the appliances — starting with the washing machine.
1) Because I work at an appliance store, of course.
2) Replacing an existing washer on average yields bigger savings than any other major home appliance.
And 3) Just because the existing washer works, per se, doesn’t mean it’s working in my favor.
It amazed me that a house with so many energy-efficient upgrades (windows, lights, HVAC, ceiling fans) still had an old, top-loader washer. I swear I saw a black hole hovering near the water hoses and electrical cord because those things waste a MASSIVE amount of water and energy. (Don’t get me started on the 40-year-old beer refrigerator.)
The existing top-load washer comes “free” with the house, but really, it will cost me.
A 10-year-old clothes washer wastes $135 in water and energy costs each year versus a new, Energy Star-qualified washer. It uses tens of gallons of water more to wash a much smaller load with noticeably reduced clean-ability. Does that sound like it works? No.
But just buying any new washer won’t deliver the same savings. Though more expensive at first, Energy Star washers save an average of $55 per year, which means the upgrade pays for itself in less than five years.
Replacing a refrigerator can save $100 per year, and replacing a dishwasher can save $40 per year, but if I had to pick one, a new Energy Star washer offers the best return on investment.