IN TODAY’S ECONOMIC climate, it’s
more important than ever to look at cost
savings around the home. One good place
to start is your appliances.
According to the U.S. Department of
Energy, the average homeowner spends
about $2,000 a year on energy bills. By
changing to appliances that have earned
an Energy Star rating, homeowners could
save $75 a year in energy costs, while
helping to protect the environment.
An Energy Star rating, which is designated by a
special label on appliances, indicates that the product has met certain energy-saving standards. This
efficiency is achieved through automatic shut-off
switches and other new technology, smart use of
materials such as insulation and other measures.
The differences can be dramatic. For example,
an Energy Star–qualified refrigerator (which in most
households is the single biggest energy-consuming
kitchen appliance) requires about half as much energy
as models manufactured before 1993. Replacing an
older model with a new Energy Star product would
save enough energy to light the average household
for nearly four months.
“Money-smart consumers should consider an
Energy Star rating when shopping for appliances,”
advises Jennifer Simmons, Costco appliance buyer.
“Energy savings, reflected on your monthly utility
bill, can make Energy Star appliances a great value,”
Also, many local energy utilities offer rebates
ranging from $25 to $150 for homeowners who
purchase Energy Star–rated products. Contact your
energy provider to see if the program is offered in
“Add it all up and the savings can be substantial,” says Jennifer.—Tim Talevich
The Costco Connection
Costco sells a variety of Energy Star–rated
appliances from leading manufacturers,
including refrigerators and washers, in the
warehouses and online at Costco.com.