Monday 21 October 2019

Can a new energy efficient washing machine pay for itself in 10 years?

When the energy efficiency movement emerged in the 1970s, the message was simple – “Just use less.”

These days, the drive for greater energy efficiency is being fuelled by advances in technology and it’s all about doing things smarter and better. The onus is still on reducing waste but smart technology has allowed us to make huge leaps in terms of how we can do this.

Most homes now contain some form of energy efficient technology, even if it’s only a lightbulb. The latest tech or the most efficient appliances tend to be more expensive but consumers can then look forward to reaping the long-term savings.

With that in mind, we looked at the ultra-efficient Bosch Serie 8 washing machines to see what kind of savings that you could potentially make. It may cost more than a standard washing machine but will it pay for itself within 10 years?

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What energy efficient technology does it have?

One of the Serie 8’s big selling point is its i-DOS technology, which is designed to calculate exactly how much detergent you need to achieve optimum results for any load. The machine’s integrated sensors can actually detect the type of fabric in the wash, the size of the load and the degree of soiling on the clothes. It even factors in the hardness of the water before deciding exactly how much detergent you need to the nearest millilitre. 

All you have to do is fill up the detergent tank and it will automatically allocate the perfect amount to each wash. That means less waste, less guesswork and precision results. You can ditch your measuring cups and let the machine handle all the calculations.

The automatic dosing system and its ActiveWater Plus feature also allows your washing machine to calculate exactly how much water is needed for a wash. That allows you to save up to 7,062 litres of water a year, which is obviously good for the environment.

The Bosch EcoSilence Drive is designed to make their machines ultra-efficient. Its VarioPerfect program comes with Speedperfect and EcoPerfect functions, which allow you to reduce wash times by up to 65pc and the energy used per wash by up to 50pc.

Can this type of washing machine pay for itself?

The big question is whether this type of machine will pay for itself. With roughly €600 between the most energy efficient model of Bosch Serie 8 and an entry level washing machine, does the larger investment make more sense?

The reality is that figures will vary from family to family but there are some key numbers to remember. Bosch studies show that the i-DOS system can save you up to €63.30 a year on detergent based on the average household usage. Calculated over 10 years, that amounts to an additional €630 towards the cost of a Serie 8 machine. 

Not only will that cover the difference between a top-of-the-range Serie 8 and a basic model of washing machine but you also have to factor in potential ongoing savings that you’ll make as a result of energy costs. The biggest running cost for washing machines is the cost of heating water, which can be 90pc of the operation costs.

Most modern machines have an energy rating of between A+ and A+++. However, the A+++ -30pc Serie 8 model is 30pc more efficient that the top-rated models on the market. When you factor that in, along with the EcoSilence Drive and the option to reduce your energy consumption with VarioPerfect, you can make even more savings on your energy bills in the years to come.

Washing machines are rated between A+++ and D so those savings will be even greater if you’re replacing an older machine with a low energy efficiency rating. According to Which, using a machine with an A+++  rating instead of one with a D rating could save the average household as much as €90 a year.

So, if you’re upgrading an old machine, you can look forward to year-on-year savings on energy costs as well as significant savings on detergent costs. You may need to spend more for an energy efficient machine but you’ll easily reap the benefits in the long term. If you have an older machine that breaks down or requires repairs, you really have to ask yourself if the money would be better invested in a new model that could last you another 10 to 20 years.

Getting a good return on your investment

The best energy efficient washing machines will inevitably involve a bigger outlay than a basic model. However, you also need to look at the return that you’ll get for your money.

Buying a state-of-the-art machine like the Serie 8 will result in significant savings on detergent and lower running costs with its smart technology and special features. You’ll also be getting all the benefits of having a top-of-the-range machine that can handle all your laundry needs and provide the best care for your clothes.

Choosing a more efficient, smarter washing machine will ultimately benefit most households in the long run if you look at the numbers. More importantly, it’s also an investment for the future from a financial, practical and environmental point of view.

For more information on Bosch washing machines, check out their website. To purchase a Bosch washing machine, please click on one of the retailer logos below.

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