DOE Tightens Criteria for Energy Star Clothes Washers

March 30, 2005

DOE announced on March 30th that it has developed more stringent criteria for clothes washers carrying the Energy Star label. The new, tougher criteria are expected to save consumers more than $52.8 million annually. The new criteria will go into effect on January 1st, 2007, when tougher minimum efficiency standards for all clothes washers take effect. Under the new guidelines, models earning the Energy Star label will be 36 percent more efficient than washers that meet the minimum requirements and will collectively save more than 185.7 million kilowatt-hours of electricity per year. The new Energy Star criteria also include water savings requirements for the first time, resulting in a savings of 8.9 billion gallons of fresh water each year. See the DOE press release.

In 1997, less than one percent of clothes washers qualified for the Energy Star label. Today, Energy Star clothes washers account for more than 30 percent of all units sold throughout the United States, and more and more efficient models are becoming available each year. See the Clothes Washers page on the Energy Star Web site.