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Front vs. top loading washing machines

6 June 2012

How are front loading washers different? Front loading washers use less water because it only fills up the drum part way and spins the clothes through the water. This means it can use less energy in terms of water heating and less water.

Front-Loader vs. Top-Loader  (Annual Cost)
Gas Heater Electric Heater
How you typically wash Top-Loader Front-Loader Top-Loader Front-Loader
100% Hot $168 $87       $252 $138
50% Hot/Cold, 50% Cold/Cold $134 $67 $176 $92
50% Warm/Cold, 50% Cold/Cold $122 $59 $148 $76
25% Hot/Cold, 75% Cold/Cold $117          $57 $138 $70
100% Cold/Cold $101 $47 $101 $47
Includes energy + water + water heating costs. Based on LOTS of assumptions! See how this was calculated.

How much water does it actually save? Front loading washers typically use 50% less water per load. A top loading washer about 40 gallons per load. That means front loading can save  15 to 20 gallons each load!

How much energy does it typically save? Energy efficient models use about 68% less electricity to heat the water. Considering 90% of the cost of washing clothes at home comes from heating the water- this is significant. They can save about $70 to $100 a year (depends on how many loads you do), which means the difference in cost of the more expensive washer can be paid back in just the first year!

If you are wondering on the more specific costs of your washing machine use this calculator by ” Mr. Electricity”. And if an energy efficient washing machine doesn’t sound like an option for you- remember you can save  $35  a year by just using the cold/cold cycle.

Earth Easy: Front Loading; Energy Star

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