Are you in the market for brand new home appliances? You may be noticing that many different appliances have Energy Star stickers. Since you don’t know what Energy Star is, these stickers probably don’t mean a whole lot to you. What is Energy Star? More importantly, are Energy Star appliances right for you?
The History of Energy Star
Energy Star is a fairly new system, having only been instated in the early 1990s. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, along with the U.S. Department of Energy, created Energy Star as a way to help homeowners and consumers live a greener, more eco-friendly life. The two United States departments formed Energy Star as a way to communicate with consumers which appliances are energy efficient. Today, Energy Star has saved consumers both energy and utility expenses. Overall, Energy Star has greatly reduced the amount of energy that we use.
Energy Star Certified Products
The first Energy Star certified products were computers. Three years after the company was formed, cooling and heating appliances began being certified. Today, everything from office equipment and electronic devices to home appliances can be certified by Energy Star. Altogether, Energy Star has 40,000 different types of products that they certify.
You can’t simply slap an Energy Star sticker on any appliance in your home. The appliance has to first go through testing to become Energy Star certified. Technicians test the appliance to figure out exactly how much energy it consumes on a regular basis. Next, recommendations are made by the technicians for reducing energy consumption. At the same time, the appliance has to be budget-friendly for consumers.
Energy Star rates appliances according to how much energy they consume and save. Different appliances have different requirements. For example, an Energy Star dishwasher cuts down on 41% of energy, while an Energy Star washing machine cuts down on 20% of energy. Rating systems are particular to the appliance being rated, not necessarily the percentage of energy savings across the board.
Higher Cost Now vs. Lower Cost Later
As you’ve been shopping, you’ve probably noted that Energy Star appliances cost more than traditional appliances. How is this helping you to save money, then? Since Energy Star appliances have been thoroughly tested and fitted to reduce energy, they cost more upfront. However, they reduce your energy consumption so much that you’ll see major savings in your utility bills. Over time, you’ll not only be paid for for the price difference in the appliance, but you’ll end up saving money in the long run. Also, many products come with rebates, which means you’ll be able to get some of your money back shortly after you make the purchase.
The True Benefit of Energy Star Products
As of 2007, as much as $16 billion was saved by both businesses and homes because of Energy Star products. Cost savings isn’t the only perk, though. Energy Star appliances reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which slows down the global warming rate. It’s estimated that Energy Star products save the same amount of greenhouse gas emissions that would be created by as many as 27 million automobiles.
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Natasha Risinger is an environmentalist who mostly blogs about saving energy. Her articles appear on eco blogs and more. Click here for more information http://www.texaselectricityproviders.com/electricity-news/