LiviosIf you are looking for savings on your energy bill, you should take a look at the laundry room. We use the washing machine and dryer often and these appliances represent a significant part of your energy consumption. How do you use them in the most energy-efficient way? Construction site Livios asked Arjan Hoffer from Bosch and Siemens.
Save energy with a heat pump dryer
The two main categories of dryers on the market are condenser dryers and heat pump dryers. “Condenser dryers heat the air by means of a glow coil, a quite inefficient system,” says Hoffer. “There will be a new energy label in 2025 and then those condenser dryers will no longer be allowed to be sold.”
Modern heat pump dryers are a much more energy-efficient alternative and are therefore the standard now. “A heat pump dryer uses heat pump technology and keeps the heat in the dryer itself. A condenser dryer, on the other hand, will also transform the room in which the appliance is located into a sauna,” says Hoffer. “The vast majority today buy a heat pump dryer.”
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This way your dryer will last longer
Hoffer does have a tip for those purchasing a new heat pump dryer. “Choose a model with a self-cleaning condenser. It will cost you a little more, but you will save in the long run,” he says. “Every dryer has a condenser that becomes contaminated with small lint after many drying cycles. The more dust sticks to the condenser plates, the more difficult they are to do their work and the more energy is needed to dry the clothes. A self-cleaning condenser uses the collected moisture to rinse the condenser each time. This way your machine continues to work like new.”
On the other hand, you cannot save by interrupting the program prematurely. “Select the right program and let the dryer do its work,” Hoffer advises. “The dryer contains sensors that continuously measure the moisture content and adjust the program.”
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Wash at low temperatures, but be careful of bacteria
You can save money when washing by choosing low temperatures, but you also have to be careful. “If you always wash at low temperatures, the washing machine can start to smell due to bacterial growth,” says Hoffer. “The washing machine is often blamed, but the odors are due to the way you use the appliance. It is wise to regularly select a high temperature program to kill those bacteria. Another option is to run the cleaning program occasionally.”
However, what can save you the most is an automatic dosing system. “The washing machine then weighs how much laundry is in the drum and doses the detergent and fabric softener,” Hoffer explains. “The latest washing machines work with an app that allows you to scan the soap you use so that the device knows exactly how much it needs. You also specify your location so that your washing machine can take the hardness of the water in your region into account.”
You can save a lot on detergent this way. “Research shows that 90 percent of consumers use too much detergent and that their overdose is on average 38 percent. A dosing system not only prevents you from putting an unnecessary amount of soap into the machine, but also prevents your device from having to perform extra rinses to remove the soap. That takes time and energy.”
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Tips when purchasing a new washing machine and dryer
When choosing a new appliance, the energy label is of course decisive, but with dryers the drying time is also important. “Heat pump dryers dry slower than the old condenser dryers, but there are also ‘speed heat pump dryers’ that are barely inferior to the condenser dryers.”
The actual drying time is not always clearly stated on the energy label. “The drying speed is calculated based on a maximum loaded appliance. According to the label, a dryer with a loading weight of seven kilograms will therefore always dry faster than an appliance with a maximum loading weight of nine kilograms. Compare the drying time of different dryers by dividing the cycle time by the maximum loading weight. The number you obtain – a certain number of minutes per kilogram of clothing to be dried – gives you a good indicator of the actual drying time,” says Hoffer. “That difference can be big, up to an hour per drying cycle.”
If you live alone or with two people, it is worth choosing a washing machine with a higher loading weight. “You would think that a machine that can wash a maximum of seven kilograms would be more economical, but modern appliances take into account how much clothing is in the washing machine and adjust the program accordingly,” concludes Hoffer. “The washing machine will not use more water than necessary. It is therefore worth choosing a larger washing machine, because sometimes you will have a large load of laundry and then you do not have to wash it twice.”
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This article was written by our partner Livios.be. Livios.be is an expert site that focuses on construction and renovation.
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