U.S. Department of Energy - Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

Advanced Manufacturing Office – Industrial Distributed Energy

Consumers to Save with New Energy Efficient Washers and Dishwashers

May 23, 2012

Photo of two modern washing machines.

Energy efficiency standards for residential clothes washers and dishwashers are designed to save consumers $20 billion in energy and water costs.
Credit: Dennis Schroeder/NREL

The Department of Energy on May 16 announced energy efficiency standards for residential clothes washers and dishwashers that are expected to save consumers $20 billion in energy and water costs. The clothes washers standard will save households approximately $350 apiece over the lifetime of the appliances. And home dishwashers will use approximately 15% less energy and more than 20% less water, directly providing consumers with savings on monthly bills.

Today, clothes washers and dishwashers account for approximately 3% of residential energy use and more than 20% of indoor water use in U.S. homes. The new standards for clothes washers will reduce the energy consumption of front-loading clothes washers by 15% and reduce water consumption by 35%, while the standards will reduce energy consumption by top-loading washers by 33% and reduce water consumption by 19%. The new standards—developed in partnership with companies such as Whirlpool, General Electric, and LG Electronics, industry advocates, national environmental organizations, consumer groups, and other stakeholders—build on previous minimum energy efficiency requirements for clothes washers and dishwashers. They go into effect starting in 2015 and 2013, respectively. The announcement is the most recent in a series of efficiency standards made by the Obama Administration that have covered nearly 40 different products, and will together save consumers nearly $350 billion on their energy bills through 2030. See the DOE press release and the Building Technologies Program website.