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washer dryer - electricity usage

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  • May 3rd, 2017 10:55 pm
[OP]
Sr. Member
Nov 25, 2008
581 posts
6 upvotes

washer dryer - electricity usage

hi , my washer n dryer must be at least 15 years old. I looked at electiricityusage, on the day i used washer dryer, its always much much higher.

My question is...would that be due to my washer dryer are way too ineffective? ( ie should buy new sets which are more energy-saving )
Whats the best way to tell ( well without buying new sets yet) ?

let me know your experience pls
tks
TC
17 replies
Deal Addict
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Aug 10, 2015
1424 posts
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St. Catharines, ON
You would save a lot of energy if you did not use a dryer at all, and hung your clothes to dry.
Deal Fanatic
Feb 9, 2006
9992 posts
4074 upvotes
Brampton
Dryer effiency hasn't really changed in 15 years. It's literally just hot wires and motor to turn the drump. A dryer is basically a big hot airpump. You could gain efficiency in the motor part of the dryer if you upgraded but it was insignificant to the overall energy use of the dryer. Dryers use about 5-6KW to power the heating elements (like an electric oven).
The motor takes about 200-500W depending on if it' an ECM or PSC type motor.
The best course of action you can do to keep it working correctly is make sure the duct work that vents outside is as smooth and clean as possible, so try to make sure flex pipe runs are short and replaced with metal sections as much as possible and blow out the ductwork yearly.


Washers these days use about half the power and water compared to a model that's over 10 years old. Depending on how much you wash you may not recoup the savings vs a new machine in a timely manner.
Deal Addict
Jan 28, 2014
2965 posts
446 upvotes
I don't know, but water and hydro in Ontario cost a lot. Our machines are small - had to be. A relative just pulled her old Maytag from the garage and is using it now instead of the much new one that came with the house - and died. It may cost her more to run but at least it has never experienced a breakdown.

I am today going to the laundromat - with many bags of things. I hardly ever use our dryer but hang things - although with the summer coming I am concerned about the electricity used when running our dehumidifier - and running it I will be.

Of course some things will most definitely not be going to the laundromat!
Deal Addict
May 23, 2009
2144 posts
711 upvotes
Mississauga
Get a gas dryer if you can.

I do abut 5-7 loads a week and my previous 19 yr old washer and electric dryer units consumed roughly 70kWh monthly. I got a new washer and gas dryer about 18 months ago and both combined always use under 20kWh depending on the temperature of wash/dry cycles(both units have small built-in electric heaters for minor temperature control). My saving is roughly $11/mth in hydro cost but it all add up.

My example is I did a load of 8 adult jeans 2 days ago. It was a cold water wash but each laundry unit ran for about an hour. My daily hydro consumption for the house still stayed under 10kwh.Smiling Face With Open Mouth
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2009
16415 posts
3498 upvotes
Toronto
bubuski wrote:
Apr 28th, 2017 12:00 pm
Get a gas dryer if you can.

I do abut 5-7 loads a week and my previous 19 yr old washer and electric dryer units consumed roughly 70kWh monthly. I got a new washer and gas dryer about 18 months ago and both combined always use under 20kWh depending on the temperature of wash/dry cycles(both units have small built-in electric heaters for minor temperature control). My saving is roughly $11/mth in hydro cost but it all add up.
Yeah, but how much did you pay to run the gas line and the gas hookup? Also gas dryers tend to be a little bit more expensive up front with less selection available, and a little less safe according to insurance statistics. Also, repairs to gas dryers tend to be more expensive.

Don't get me wrong, I'd consider a gas dryer myself, but I don't think it's necessarily a slam dunk decision even if you're due for a new dryer. In my case, I didn't have the hookups already in place, so to get the laundry room gas-ready wasn't worth it in my opinion.
Deal Addict
May 23, 2009
2144 posts
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Mississauga
EugW wrote:
Apr 28th, 2017 12:11 pm
Yeah, but how much did you pay to run the gas line and the gas hookup? Also gas dryers tend to be a little bit more expensive up front with less selection available, and a little less safe according to insurance statistics. Also, repairs to gas dryers tend to be more expensive.

Don't get me wrong, I'd consider a gas dryer myself, but I don't think it's necessarily a slam dunk decision even if you're due for a new dryer. In my case, I didn't have the hookups already in place, so to get the laundry room gas-ready wasn't worth it in my opinion.
Break even point will depend on how often it is used. While my usage is less than the the energy star rating estimate, their dryer estimate was around 100kWh vs 950kWh yearly(8 wash/dry cycles weekly). All costs included I invested $500 extra to swap over versus sticking with the electric equivalent model so my break even should be within 5 years. This is my forever home so I'm also covered for when the appliances are due to be replaced again in 10-12yrs since new appliances dont last as long.

For insurance safety issue, I have not seen the statistics and it did not affect my rates. To me it like compare electric vs gas oven, stove or heating...they all are safe when installed to code and can be catastrophic when it's a hack job.
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2009
16415 posts
3498 upvotes
Toronto
bubuski wrote:
Apr 28th, 2017 12:56 pm
Break even point will depend on how often it is used. While my usage is less than the the energy star rating estimate, their dryer estimate was around 100kWh vs 950kWh yearly(8 wash/dry cycles weekly). All costs included I invested $500 extra to swap over versus sticking with the electric equivalent model so my break even should be within 5 years. This is my forever home so I'm also covered for when the appliances are due to be replaced again in 10-12yrs since new appliances dont last as long.

For insurance safety issue, I have not seen the statistics and it did not affect my rates. To me it like compare electric vs gas oven, stove or heating...they all are safe when installed to code and can be catastrophic when it's a hack job.
The other complaints I've heard (but can't verify since I don't have one) is that some gas dryers can yellow white fabrics over time, and occasionally some can cause a smell to the clothes that electric dryers generally do not cause.

The other issue is heat modulation. Most gas dryers are simple on-off in terms of the gas valve. They usually do not have a variable stage gas supply, but then again in real world functioning I suspect it probably doesn't matter that much.
Sr. Member
May 21, 2015
639 posts
304 upvotes
Sarnia, ON
If you can live with a mismatched set of appliances it would be money wasted to purchase a new dryer. Who cares if they don't match if they're hidden in a closet , laundry room or basement.. Where new high efficiency washers really shine is that the spin speeds are so much faster that the clothes really only need little more than half the time in the dryer compared to being washed in a regular washer.
Deal Guru
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Feb 11, 2007
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Oakville
The first thing you should do is to make sure to do the laundry when electricity rates are cheapest (evenings and weekends).
Deal Addict
May 23, 2009
2144 posts
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Mississauga
EugW wrote:
Apr 28th, 2017 1:36 pm
The other complaints I've heard (but can't verify since I don't have one) is that some gas dryers can yellow white fabrics over time, and occasionally some can cause a smell to the clothes that electric dryers generally do not cause.

The other issue is heat modulation. Most gas dryers are simple on-off in terms of the gas valve. They usually do not have a variable stage gas supply, but then again in real world functioning I suspect it probably doesn't matter that much.
I have not experienced yellowing in my whites (mostly dress shirts and 100% cotton undershirts). Might be manufacturer specific since I read it is related to drying temperature. Mine has sensors which regulate six ranges between 99-143F...lowest being delicate cycle. Brands like Speedqueen which are old school without sensors are reviewed to heat up to 148F in delicate cycles..

I know the gas burner in my unit only stays full on for the first 10-15mins after that the flame ignites goes on/off almost every minutes for most of the cycle to regulate the heat. I thought it was broken when I first noticed it.
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Nov 13, 2013
1506 posts
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Ottawa
engineered wrote:
Apr 28th, 2017 2:28 pm
The first thing you should do is to make sure to do the laundry when electricity rates are cheapest (evenings and weekends).
With all the fixed costs this is kind of overrated. Still worth doing but the difference is not as large as it first appears.
Deal Addict
Feb 4, 2015
4180 posts
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Canada, Eh!!
engineered wrote:
Apr 28th, 2017 2:28 pm
The first thing you should do is to make sure to do the laundry when electricity rates are cheapest (evenings and weekends).
Depending on location and if you are under TOU [time of use] then just note that the times for high, medium, low may have changed as of May 1.
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Sep 13, 2003
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I felt it was cheapest to buy electric dryer. Savings from gas dryer wasn't worth it as I had to pay for hook up $150-200 and more up front cost of gas dryer about $150 more. I think the biggest saving is only using electricity off peak rates and air drying some clothes.

Regardless we pay a lot in Ontario sometimes u save more and the gov will get you one way or the other.
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Aug 20, 2009
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aquariaguy wrote:
May 2nd, 2017 10:57 pm
I felt it was cheapest to buy electric dryer. Savings from gas dryer wasn't worth it as I had to pay for hook up $150-200 and more up front cost of gas dryer about $150 more. I think the biggest saving is only using electricity off peak rates and air drying some clothes.

Regardless we pay a lot in Ontario sometimes u save more and the gov will get you one way or the other.
Hah indeed. I'm reminded of a story about a company that figured out it was cheaper to use stored energy generated from their trains running downhill. They used as much stored power as possible and shifted much of their usage to offpeak times to save money on power costs. It was very successful. In fact it was so successful that the local power utility got upset at their lost revenue and shifted peak/offpeak hours for businesses in an effort to recoup the money.

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