Not only are new white goods frequently sturdier and more resilient than their older versions, and their owners therefore less likely to experience an appliance breakdown than they would otherwise be, but they are far more energy-efficient too. New regulations, plus increasing consumer interest in green issues and energy-saving measures, has seen the power consumption of domestic appliances plummet in recent years, with A-rated appliances now dominating the market.
Research from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) found that in the last three years, sales of energy-efficient washing machines, refrigerators and television sets has increased by an average of 18%. The number of refrigerators sold with an energy rating of A+ or higher has skyrocketed in the last few years – in 2011, these appliances made up just 20% of the market, but in 2013 this reached a massive 80%.
The DECC pointed out that the electricity consumption of a refrigerator purchased in 2000 averaged at 225kW/yr, but in 2014 this fell by almost 50% to reach 114kWh/yr. The difference in washing machine energy-efficiency is slightly less marked- falling from 208kWh/yr in 2001 to 191kWh/yr in 2014, but this still leads to energy savings of £38.32 over the 12.5 years people typically own this appliance, or enough electricity to boil the kettle 150 times.
Power consumption is now the most important consideration for people when they buy refrigerators, a Mintel report cited by the DECC found, with this surpassing even the trustworthiness of the manufacturer’s brand. Mintel also found that people in the UK are generally well-aware that they can save money by buying washing machines with good energy ratings.
But it might not just be the efficiency of the product that draws custom – the DECC found that more efficient domestic appliances are associated with improved functionality, design and performance. Consumers appear to have discovered that appliance breakdowns are less likely to occur should they buy a more efficient model.
This research was published at the same time as the Household Electricity Survey, which discovered that the UK’s residential energy consumption could be cut by approximately 13% as more households opt for energy-efficient appliances. This reduction would be enough to close down two large power plants!
Ed Davey, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, said improving the energy efficiency of everyday appliances has helped consumers keep more money in their pockets without “having to do a thing”.
He noted that improving technology and enhanced product standards are seeing even more efficient appliances released “all the time”, which should see running costs continue to plummet.
If you have a brand-new A-rated appliance, or if you’re worried that your old appliance is going to break down, take out appliance cover with 247 Home Rescue and put your mind at ease.