Energy efficiency, eco friendly, and ‘going green’ are the new buzz words in saving money in your home and helping the Earth’s resources.  Several years ago, energy efficiency seemed to only be adopted by a choice few, while today it is a way of life, and should be for our Earth’s longevity.  When buying appliances for your home, do you know what factors to look for to match your budget, home size and type? Here are some guidelines on how to buy the right appliance for your wallet and your home.

REFRIGERATOR: Depending on the age of your refrigerator you could be spending more for electricity than you need to.  Refrigerator’s use approximately 18% of your energy cost for your monthly bill for your home. If your refrigerator is more than 10 years old, consider buying a newer model. They contribute to global warming and by replacing can reduce this harmful effect to the Earth’s atmosphere. The money spent on a new model will be made up for in your monthly savings. If you have a newer refrigerator clean the condenser coils yearly to reduce dust and dirt. A dirty condenser makes your refrigerator work harder and less efficiently.  Place your refrigerator out of direct sunlight or heat producing appliances in your kitchen.  Test the seal of your refrigerator to ensure cold air isn’t escaping through the doors. If a paper can easily be removed while the door is closed, the seal or latches on the door may need to be tightened or replaced.

HOT WATER HEATER: Similar to refrigerators, consider replacing your water heater if more than 10 years old. Older water heaters can rust, collect sand and sediment in the bottom, and are also costing you 15% of your household’s energy dollars.  The energy efficiency of a water heater is measured in Energy Factor or (EF).  The larger the number of EF, the more efficient the water heater is.  For even greater efficiency consider buying a tankless water heater.  Tankless water heaters only heat water when it is needed, instead of keeping a reserve of water at a constant temperature. They will save you money and space in your garage, closet or basement. Since there is not a tank, the tankless unit is a box on a wall that saves valuable floor space.

FURNACE: Global warming is caused by the harmful greenhouse gases that emits from your home furnace.  The furnace contributes to the largest portion of your energy bill. Before you replace your current furnace look at the rest of your home’s sources for leaking air sources and fix them first. Make sure the windows in your home are tightly sealed and doors don’t have air leaks around the perimeter.  The insulation in your home should also be reviewed.  The attic is a prime source for heat and cold air exchange. Consider adding more insulation if you live in a home that heat or cools quickly depending on the temperature outside. This could be a sign that you need additional insulation.  When buying a furnace, ensure you buy the correct unit for your home. The square footage, orientation to the sun, and quantity of windows and doors can be evaluated by a professional home energy analyst.  The right energy efficient furnace can bring your home years of lower energy bills and saving of the Earth’s resources.

Your home has several appliances that can help save you money, consider the before mentioned tips when choosing new appliances.  Any appliance in your home that heats up, uses water, or keeps items cool will require energy.  Eco friendly appliances help save on energy and use cleaner methods to produce energy.

Have you purchased any energy efficient appliances in your home lately? What made you make the switch from your previous appliance? If you’re in the market for new appliances, tell us what will help you make your final decision!