Are Front-Load Washers Cost Effective?

Front-loading washing machines use less electricity and water to wash clothes than a standard top-loading drier. This results in lower operational expenses, but whether the savings is enough to create such a machine cost effective depends upon several elements. Regardless of cost, front-loading machines are easier on the environment.

Energy Savings

A front-loading drier uses between 40 and 50 percent less electricity compared to the usual top-loading machine. For an average family, this implies it costs about $18 per year in electricity to operate the machine. This is about $30 less per year compared to the usual top-loading model. If the washing machine has a lifespan of 10 decades, this is a entire energy savings of $300. The last amount may be less or more, depending on electricity prices in your area and the exact energy usage of your model.

Water Savings

Many front-loading washers use about 40 percent less water than the usual top-loading unit. This results in a savings of about 7,000 gallons per year. Cost-wise, this is really a savings similar to electricity, at around $30 per year, or $300 within a 10-year lifespan. Savings could be higher if water rates are high, or even the front loader is particularly efficient.

Repair Costs

Repairs to front-loading washing machines often are more expensive than for top-loading models. Parts such as drums and electronics cost more, in addition to the labor to install some components. It is impossible to know whether your washer will need expensive repairs or function with only regular maintenance for its anticipated life span. Repairs may quickly eat into any cost savings realized by power and water efficiency.

Other Factors

It may look like the ideal way to maximize savings using a front-loading drier is to purchase a less expensive model. Lower-end models, however, are not as energy efficient as more expensive ones. Utilize the energy-guide tag to evaluate efficiency and operating costs between models. It may be more cost effective to buy a unit that is somewhat cheaper but much more efficient. Additionally, when comparing prices, consider the age and efficiency of your current machine. Newer machines are far more efficient than older machines, and savings can be greater than those listed for machines at the same era.

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