Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Less Water Use: Dishwasher or Hand Washing?

Fact or Fable? A Dishwasher Is More Expensive Than Hand Washing

This is a fable. It's a common misconception that dishwashers are convenient, but use more water and energy than hand washing. In fact, dishwashers can help you conserve water and save on energy bills.

Cleaning a typical load of dishes in a dishwasher uses 37 percent less water than washing by hand, saving the average household nearly 5,000 gallons of water per year.

Also, using a dishwasher, rather than hand washing, can cut your annual energy costs by more than $40, according to ENERGY STAR.

Energy-saving tips
Dishwashers are not only convenient; they are also your best energy-saving option. The following practices can help you save even more:

• Scrape dishes instead of rinsing before loading them into the dishwasher.
• Pre-rinsing dishes can use up to 20 gallons of water.
• Only run your dishwasher when there's a full load and use short wash cycles for lightly soiled dishes.
• Use a rinse agent and the air-dry setting rather than the heated drying cycle.

If you are shopping for a new dishwasher, purchase an ENERGY STAR qualified model. ENERGY STAR dishwashers use less energy and water than standard units.

“This article previously appeared in the Central Virginia Electric Cooperative Energy Sense newsletter, and is used with permission.”

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