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How To Run Your Washing Machine On The Cheap

How To Run Your Washing Machine On The Cheap

Looking to cut down your household bills? Your first stop should be a quick check of your largest home appliances.

Often, older models can consume much more power than they need to, hence your big bills! One of the worst offenders is the washing machine, the great workhorse of the home. Take a moment to consider how long you’ve had your current washing machine – if it’s been more than ten years, it’s likely not as energy- and water-efficient as it could be. Advances in laundry technology in the past few years have seen newer washing machines built-in with time features so they can use as little as possible while still giving you a great result.

Top-loading models are the most commonly used type in Australia, but haven’t traditionally been known for their energy efficiency. Fortunately, that’s no longer the case! The LG WT-H9506 Top-load Washer, $899, has a 3.5 Energy Star rating, and a 4-star rating for water efficiency.  It won’t chow down on your electricity or water, so you can look forward to smaller bills.

Front-loaders are generally more energy efficient than top-loading models because they work with gravity to clean the load. The Electrolux EWF1074 Front Load Washer, $549, wears 4-star energy and 4.5 star water efficiency ratings like badges. Plus, watching the load through the glass door as it foams up and spins is always a little thrill for some.

To help you get the most out of your machine, here are a few tips:

Use lower temperature settings

Did you know that almost 90% of the power used up by your washing machine is for heating the water? Where possible, use cold water for washing and rinsing. For more heavily soiled clothes, a good pre-soaking will work wonders, so stains can lift out in cool water.

Run a full load

Loading your machine to its full capacity can help use up less energy, rather than two smaller loads washed on a low or medium setting.

Don’t be afraid to be an energy saver

The energy-saving features and settings of your washer and dryer, such as the Sensor Smart Dry Technology of the Beko DCU 7330 X Clothes Dryer, $899, are there for a reason! Use them where possible to either cut down on drying time or minimize the amount of energy used by your washer and dryer in every run.  

Avoid over-drying

Try not to run the dryer for longer than it needs. If your machine has an auto-dry setting, turn it on and you’ll use less electricity. Lastly, removing clothes from the dryer while still a little damp can help eliminate the need for ironing—another big cut from your electricity bill.

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(photo by gemteck1)