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General Good Practices to Save Water

Get a front-loading washer 

  • Larger capacity because of no bulky agitator. The average load increase is 30%. The extra space improves washing of bulky items like sleeping bags, bedspreads and throw rugs.

  • High-speed extraction. Front-load washers spin at over 1000 rpm in American-made machines, and higher on European models. This is considerably faster than the 600-700 rpm spin cycle on top-load washers. Clothes come out drier and thereby reduce drying time. This saves energy, and helps the dryer keep pace with the washer during multiple-load washing.
  • Gentler on laundry items. Gentler wash action, with no agitator.
  • Quieter. No clunky sounds, just the whir of the spin cycle.
  • Cleans better. Front-load washers clean many stains better than conventional top-load washers.
  • Stackable. The dryer can be stacked on top of the washer for space savings. ( Not all models have this feature.) Models with controls mounted on the front can also be installed under counters.
  • Energy conservation. Front-load washers can easily save over $100 per year in energy costs, and they use 1/2 as much water. Because they use less water, they also require up to 68% less electricity to heat the water, resulting in more energy savings.
  • Save Water. Save 15 gallons per load, or 6,390 gallons per year for a typical family


Always use HE (High Efficiency) detergent.

Front-loading clothes washers are designed to use High Efficiency detergent. Using regular detergent creates too much suds, which will affect the machineís washing and rinsing performance. Over time, it can lead to odors and mechanical problems.


Fill it up.

Clothes washers use about the same amount of energy regardless of the size of the load, so run full loads whenever possible.


Wash in cold water.

Water heating consumes about 90% of the energy it takes to operate a clothes washer. Unless youíre dealing with oily stains, washing in cold water will generally do a good job of cleaning. Switching your temperature setting from hot to warm can cut energy use in half. Using the cold cycle reduces energy use even more.


Use a drying rack or hang clothes outside.

Where and when possible, air-drying clothes instead of using a dryer not only saves energy, but also helps them last longer.


Avoid the sanitary cycle.

This super hot cycle, available on some models, increases energy use significantly. Only use it when absolutely necessary.


Activate the high spin speed option.

If your clothes washer has spin options, choose a high spin speed or the extended spin option to reduce the amount of remaining moisture in your clothes after washing. This decreases the amount of time it takes to dry your clothes.


Leave the door open after use.

Front-loading washers use airtight seals to prevent water from leaking while the machine is in use. When the machine is not in use, this seal can trap moisture in the machine and lead to mold. Leave the door ajar for an hour or two after use to allow moisture to evaporate. Make sure children do not climb into the machine while the door is open.


Rinse the washer every month.

Some manufacturers recommend rinsing the washer each month by running a normal cycle with 1 cup of bleach to help reduce the risk of mold or mildew buildup. Consult the product ownerís manual before attempting.


When Purchasing a New Washing Machine



When buying a clothes washer, ask for an ENERGY STAR qualified model to be sure itís energy efficient. Use the store locator to find a retail outlet that sells ENERGY STAR qualified products.

Check the yellow Energy Guide label.

This label helps you determine how much energy it takes to operate the model, compare the energy use of similar models, and estimate annual operating costs. Learn How to Use the EnergyGuide Label PDF Exit ENERGY STAR.

Think carefully about the size of the washer you need.

While a larger model will obviously hold more clothes, it will also use more energy. On the other hand, a model thatís too small will require a lot more clothes washing. ENERGY STAR qualified models are also available in stackable and under-the-counter designs, which fit in smaller spaces.

Choose a model with a high Modified Energy Factor (MEF) and a low Water Factor (WF).

Modified Energy Factor (MEF) is a measure of energy efficiency that considers the energy used by the washer, the energy used to heat the water, and the energy used to run the dryer. The higher the MEF, the more energy efficient the clothes washer. Water Factor (WF) measures water efficiency in gallons of water consumed per cubic foot of capacity. The lower the WF, the more water efficient the clothes washer. Both MEF and WF are listed on the ENERGY STAR qualified product list:

Look for several water level options.

Choose a washing machine that allows you to adjust the water level to match the size of the load. has been developing for months. But the actual construction of this site was begun on February 11, 2009.

The site will be THE comprehensive site for consumers, showing them the myriad of ways they can save on their utility expense.

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