Best Energy Saving Laundry Practices

Did you know that washer and dryers are among the costliest appliances to operate in the average home? A standard washing machine uses 19 or more gallons of water per load. Since most people wash several loads of laundry per week, here are some best practices to help you reduce your energy use and save money on wash days.


  • Wash with cold water. Over 80 percent of the energy used by a washing machine goes towards heating the water. Using warm water instead of hot can cut a load’s energy use in half, and using cold water will save even more. Many garment care labels in your clothing specify to wash in cool or cold The right temperature can prolong the lifespan of your clothes.
  • Wash full loads. Your washer and dryer will use about the same amount of energy no matter the size of the load, so it is better to fill it up.
  • Avoid prewashing. Using this feature will increase your energy usage by more than 15 percent.
  • Use the high-speed or extended spin cycle in the washer.
    This will remove as much moisture as possible before drying, reducing your drying time and the wear on your clothes from the high heat of the dryer.


  • Dry right-sized loads for your machine. If the dryer is too full, it will take longer for the clothes to dry. Loads that are too small can also take longer to dry. Dry similar items together Try to avoid putting items in dryer with stuffing or foam padding including puffy jackets, sleeping bags, stuffed animals and more. This can cause damage to your dryer. Try to air dry or place in laundry bag.
  • Switch loads while the dryer is warm. This will allow you to take advantage of the remaining heat from the previous cycle.
  • Use dryer balls. Wool or rubber dryer balls will help separate your clothes and get more air to them, which can cut drying time. They can also reduce static, so you don’t need dryer sheets.
  • Clean the lint filter on the dryer. The dryer will run more efficiently and safely. If you leave lint after each cycle, it will accumulate and can eventually block your dryers flow of air and become a safety hazard or even cause a fire.
  • Use lower heat settings in the dryer. Even if the drying cycle is longer, you’ll use less energy and be less likely to over-dry your clothes.
  • Use various options your dryer offers.
    The cool down cycle allows clothes to finish drying with the heat remaining in the dryer. Use the moisture sensor option which automatically shuts off the machine when clothes are dry.
  • Air dry when you can.
    Hang laundry outside or on a drying rack to avoid using the dryer altogether. Hang items individually with as much space in between as possible so they can dry quicker.


And if possible, use an ENERGY STARÒ-certified washer and dryer. New ENERGY STAR washers use about 25% less energy than traditional models and ENERGY STAR dryers use about 20% less energy.

Reducing your energy spend will help lower your electricity bills. You can also enroll in a fixed-rate plan with an energy supply provider, like AEP Energy to further lower your energy costs and protect your bills from fluctuating rates. Learn more here.



AEP Energy does not guarantee the accuracy, timeliness, suitability, completeness, freedom from error, or value of any information herein. The information presented is provided “as is”, “as available”, and for informational purposes only, speaks only to events or circumstances on or before the date it is presented, and should not be construed as advice, a recommendation, or a guarantee of future results. AEP Energy disclaims any and all liabilities and warranties related hereto, including any obligation to update or correct the information herein. Summaries and website links included herein (collectively, “Links”) are not under AEP Energy’s control and are provided for reference only and not for commercial purposes. AEP Energy does not endorse or approve of the Links or related information and does not provide any warranty of any kind or nature related thereto.

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