The average U.S. household washes about 400 loads of laundry per year, which adds up to thousands of gallons of water and a lot of energy. So it’s no wonder why those in the market for a new washer should be concerned with energy and water efficiency. The good news is that washers have come a long way over the past 10 years and are now saving a tremendous amount of water and energy, while still cleaning clothes just as well, if not better, than their older counterparts.
What to Look for in an Efficient Washer
There are two main measures that determine how efficient your new washer will be. Washers with the highest Modified Energy Factor, or MEF, are the most energy efficient models. Whereas, those with the lowest Water Factor, or WF, are the most water efficient. Remember that, high MEF and a low WF. The current Energy Star criteria requires washers to have an MEF of 2.0 or higher and a WF of 6.0 or lower
Wondering where to find this information? The simplest way, when you’re comparing different washer types, is to check the Energy Star website, which allows you to check and compare many different makes and models. You can also take a look at the Energy Star label on the specific machine you’re considering.
Top Loaders vs. Front Loaders
Are top loaders or front loaders better? Generally speaking, front loading washers use less water because top loaders submerge clothes in a big tub, while front loaders tumble clothes through a shallow puddle of water. Front loading machines also spin faster than top-loaders during the final spin cycle, which removes more water from the clothes and allows you’re dryer to dry clothes quicker and use less energy.
The down side of front loading washing machines is usually the price tag. Many people get sticker shock when they compare the price of front loaders against top loaders. If you’re in that boat, don’t feel guilty for wanting to trade efficiency for a cheaper price. Top loaders might still be second to font loaders in energy and water efficiency ratings, but many top loading models have made giant strides in the past few years towards becoming more efficient. Most current top loading models are much more efficient than those made 10 years ago. If you are leaning towards a top loading machine, look for one with a shorter central agitator. Washing machines with shorter agitators draw the clothes down to a lower water level during the washing cycle, which reduces the overall water consumption.
The Perfect Washer For You
Finding the washer that’s right for you means finding the washer that strikes a perfect balance between efficiency, price, features and size. When selecting a new washer, try not to be swayed by fancy finishes and sleek designs, instead prioritize what items are most important to you and focus on that list when making your buying decision. Once you’ve made a decision, give us a call if you need to install or adjust your washer and dryer hookups. Robinson’s Plumbing serves Charlottesville, Richmond and the surrounding areas.