Energy Star Appliances--Look for the Label to Save and be Greener!
Did you know that most new Penn National homes are equipped with Energy Star® appliances? That means that from the moment you step foot into your new home, you are going greener (and saving some green).
The major appliances in your home — refrigerators, clothes washers, dishwashers — account for a big chunk of your monthly utility bill. And if your refrigerator or washing machine is more than a decade old, you’re spending a lot more on energy than you need to.
Today’s major appliances don’t hog energy the way older models do because they must meet minimum federal energy efficiency standards. These standards have been tightened over the years, so any new appliance you buy today has to use less energy than the model you’re replacing. For instance, if you buy one of today’s most energy-efficient refrigerators, it will use less than half the energy of a model that’s 12 years old or older.
Of course, efficient appliances don’t just save you money; they’re good for the environment. The less energy we all use, the lower our demand on power plants, which means less pollution. The trick is to figure out which models use the least energy. Here are some guidelines.
Look for the Energy Star® label. Energy Star models are the most energy efficient in any product category, exceeding the energy efficiency minimums set by the federal government. If you remember only one rule when you shop, remember to look for the Energy Star label. In some parts of the country, utilities and state governments even sweeten the deal by offering rebates on Energy Star-rated models. Check the Energy Star® web site for details.
Use the EnergyGuide label. Some uninformed salespeople might tell you that a model you’re looking at is the most efficient because it has an EnergyGuide label. Not exactly. All new appliances must carry the EnergyGuide label, either on the appliance itself or on the packaging. The label allows you to compare the typical annual energy consumption and operating cost of different models of any type of appliance you’re thinking of buying.
Get the right size. Make sure the product you’re buying suits your needs. Oversized air conditioners, water heaters and refrigerators waste energy and money; in many cases they also don’t perform as well.
Whenever possible choose appliances that run on natural gas rather than electricity. Usually it’s more efficient to burn natural gas where it’s needed — in your home — than to burn it at a power plant, convert the heat to electricity and then send the electricity over wires to your house. Look for dryers, stoves and water heaters that run on natural gas.
Think long term. Many of the most energy-efficient appliances cost more initially, but they’ll save you money in the long run. Expect to keep most major appliances between 10 and 20 years. A more efficient appliance soon pays for itself; lower monthly utility bills over the lifetime of the appliance will more than offset a higher purchase price. In addition, the latest resource-efficient clothes washers and dishwashers not only save electricity, they also use a lot less water and can reduce your water bill.
How willing are you to spend more for being Green?