Householders have embraced eco-efficient appliances, ones that minimise the use of water and energy. They now buy the most efficient models – 80% of washing machines and 90% of fridges sold are now top efficiency. Using a top-rated machine at home – a small individual action – can make an environmental difference because of the combined effect of the large numbers of appliances involved. Nowadays 98% of homes have at least one large appliance. Ownership of refrigerators is almost universal at 99% and homes have become so reliant on our freezers that over 2 million are owned in four-freezer households.
Eco Performance in Use
Manufacturers strive continuously to reduce energy used by appliances. The most commonly bought fridges use 40% less energy than 10 years ago, which equates to a £300 saving in running costs over the decade and washing machines use a third less water than 15 years ago.
Choosing and using appliances with sustainability in mind is invaluable – if all the fridge freezers, bought in 2019 or earlier were replaced by a model rated A+ or higher under the old ratings or F in the new ones, enough energy would be saved to power half the street lighting in the UK.
Light up half the UK!
Replacing all the fridge freezers running in our homes in 2019 with at least a modestly efficient model would have saved enough energy to light up half the streets in the UK.
Today’s washing machine:
The industry recognises that smart technology will be key to further enhancing the efficiency of appliances. It’s not just smart tech for smart tech’s sake – a truly smart, connected home can boost sustainability by assessing and responding to real-time requirements and independently identifying waste of energy, water or time.
Smart tech can range from more basic sensor-operated technology such as dryers – that know when to switch off once clothes are dry – to more ‘connected’ technology with live video feeds on smart phones – these might ensure the appliance-owner knows which supermarket items need to be bought. Wifi connectivity on dishwashers, washing machines and fridges allows for control of the appliance from the comfort of a smartphone and for receiving alerts about appliances.