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How to choose a sustainable appliance: CHOICE

Experts share tips on how to select an environmentally-friendly appliance.

Last updated: 12 April 2023

CHOICE experts have released their top tips for choosing a sustainable new appliance, helping you to save money on your bills and reduce your carbon footprint. 

"Making the switch to a more sustainable appliance can be a difficult task if you're unsure what to look out for. Luckily, we've spoken to the experts, done the research and are here to help you choose an appliance that's efficient, sustainable and suits your personal needs," says CHOICE journalist Liam Kennedy. 

"With a little bit of research, you can purchase an appliance that both takes less of a toll on the environment and saves you money," says Kennedy. 

Here are CHOICE's top tips for choosing a sustainable appliance: 

1. Research efficiency and performance

Looking at the star-based energy rating on your appliance instantly gives you an insight into the impact the appliance will have on the environment. 

"The star-based energy rating assigns a product a rating out of ten or six stars. The higher the rating, the more efficient the appliance is," says Kennedy. 

"It's important to note that if you're using the star rating to compare products, you should compare appliances with similar size and capacity. An appliance that's efficient but bigger than what you need will cost you more in the long run," says Kennedy. 

2. Interrogate green claims

"Buying sustainable appliances isn't always easy due to the alarming number of misleading green claims we're currently seeing. However, there are things you can do to see through false claims," says Kennedy.

"If a product claims to be recyclable, check for additional information on whether this only covers certain parts. It's also worth looking for third party certifications that back up a company's assertions. Be particularly wary of companies that are making grand claims such as '100% emissions free'," says Kennedy. 

3. Look after your product and what you put into it

"After you've bought your sustainable appliance, it's just as important to do the work to extend the appliance's lifespan," says Kennedy. 

"For smaller products like kitchen goods, you can extend their lifespan by simply cleaning them regularly. This ensures they don't have to work harder and consume more energy to deliver the same result," says Kennedy.

"Keeping your larger appliances clean is also important when it comes to keeping them working for as long as possible. Regularly rinse out your dishwasher filters, run a cleaning cycle on your washing machine every once in a while, and keep your dryer lint free," says Kennedy. 

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