Home appliances have advanced immensely within the last decade. Thanks to technological improvements, they are quieter and work more efficiently. However, although these home gadgets are running better, they don’t last as long as they once did. Also, there is a greater reliance today compared to 10 years ago, which is why we’ve been seeing a decrease in component useful life. There are ways to maximize an appliance’s longevity when proper maintenance is applied. Below are some common household appliances along with the time period that you can expect them to last based on the Study of Life Expectancy on Home Components.
Your kitchen appliances go through a lot of wear and tear on a daily basis. You can help your refrigerator and freezer last longer by not over-stuffing them with food. The open space allows the cold air to circulate better throughout these appliances, keeping your food fresher and your appliances running more efficiently. Extend the lifetime of your microwave by continually cleaning out spilt food that can result in carbon buildup. The carbon can lead to electrical sparking and severely damage your microwave.
Microwave Ovens: 9 years
Gas Oven: 15 years
Dishwasher: 9 years
Freezer: 12 – 20 years
Refrigerator: 13 years
After the kitchen, your laundry room is the second room in your home that requires major appliances to operate on a consistent basis. By not overloading your washer and dryer, you can avoid wearing out the motor and drive belts in your washer and actually shorten the amount of dry time needed when running your dryer.
A common factor to extending the useful life of all major household appliances is to continually clean them. Proper maintenance and a little TLC will help keep your appliances running longer and working more efficiently.
Saving energy isn’t the only way to add some extra cushion to your bottom line. In today’s tech-savvy world, there are a variety of gadgets that can make your home slicker, more energy efficient, and even more attractive to a prospective buyer. According to our friends at Green Builder, “Smart House technology is rapidly becoming a sought-after feature for home buyers, with many saying that they only want to purchase a house with such capabilities.”
Here are some energy-saving gadgets that will bring your house up to date in awesome, innovative ways.
Delta® Breez Integrity Fan
Everyone needs two things when they go to the bathroom: ventilation and ambient noise. This awesome appliance gives your home both. The fan is Bluetooth®-equipped, which makes it able to play whatever tunes you need to sing along to in the shower. But we’re also burying the lead: the fan is also extremely energy-efficient. Get one of these today, and give your vocal chords a warm up. You’ll have plenty to sing about!
Whirlpool® Compact Washer and Dryer Combo
Home washer-dryer setups have saved millions of Americans countless hours at soulless laundromats. But they can also be a little inefficient when it comes to space—particularly if you are of the urban persuasion. Do you put your laundry appliances in the kitchen? In the garage (if you have one?) It’s not an easily answered question. The Whirlpool® compact washer and dryer combo answers it. And it does so with a couple of appliances that are among the most energy-efficient in the biz.
August Smart Lock
This one isn’t particularly energy efficient—locks aren’t known for running up the ol’ energy bill. But even a small change like upgrading to an Internet-connected lock could pose the difference between a potential home appraiser thinking your home is a modern paradise and them thinking you might as well live in medieval times. OK, maybe the difference between a traditional lock and the smart lock isn’t that drastic. But if you want to transform your living space into a modern pad, the lock could be the perfect accessory for you and your checking account.
Aren’t we all a little scared of our water heaters? They sit in some out-of-the-way corner in our homes, powerful, and even a little volatile. When the machine malfunctions, we become aware of it through startling showers and frustrating tap-wringing.
Water heaters (necessarily!) run hot. They are your home’s best frenemy. And yet, according to a 2009 report, 97 percent of America’s water heaters had a tank. Despite the fact that those numbers have undeniably shifted in the almost-decade since that study, the water heater market is still dominated by tanks.
A Better Way?
It might be appropriate that we cited a 2009 study, because water heater tanks might before too long become artifacts of the past. According to our friends at Green Builder Media, tankless water heaters might be the future of home water heating. Government regulations have prohibited the energy-wasting heating models of yesteryear, which means manufacturers are forced to churn out bulkier, more expensive units. This plays right into the hands of tankless water heater retailers:
“These factors are expected to continue to boost popularity of the tankless gas condensing water heater market for several years,” Green Builder wrote.
Save Energy and Save Money
These factors are also letting the market catch up to what has likely long been true. Despite a tankless water heater’s high initial cost, the money and energy savings of a tankless model more than make up for the initial price tag in the long run. “A household that uses up to 40 gallons of hot water daily can cut its bill by about 34 percent—about $100 per year—by going tankless,” Green Builder wrote.
This is often the case in the energy-saving market: consumers can access great savings—if they just have the cash, the patience, and the know-how. We hope now you at least have a little of that last one.