Over 95 % of german households have a washing machine. And in most of them the water in the device is heated electrically. But one tip will warm the cockles of your heart: save electricity by connecting your washing machine to hot water. How this works and what you have to consider, you can find out here.
New connection: hot water
The washing machine is one of the biggest consumers of electricity in the household. Most of the energy required for washing is used for heating: if the appliance is connected to the cold water supply, the water for the wash cycle has to be heated electrically by a heating element.
A lot of electricity for heating up
For a wash at 30 degrees celsius, about half of the machine’s electricity is needed just to heat the water – at 60 degrees, as much as three-quarters. And this electricity adds up over the year.
As a rule, connection via the central hot water supply is more cost-effective. The appliance then draws hot water from the mains instead of heating it itself. If the hot water is also heated in a particularly energy-efficient way, for example by a solar system or district heating, it pays off even more. This also applies to dishwashers, which can also be connected to the hot water supply.
Hot tips for changing
When changing the connection to hot water, however, there are a few things to keep in mind with the washing machine:
- Check that the hot water connection is no more than five meters from the washing machine, otherwise too much heat will be lost.
- The temperature of the hot water should not exceed 40 degrees, even when washing at 60 degrees. Protein and protein stains are not washed out properly if the inlet temperatures are too high. Cold or lukewarm water dissolves red wine stains better, for example. If the water is running at 40 degrees, it will be heated for a 60 degree program, but the energy output will not be as high as with cold water.
Only a few manufacturers offer you an appliance with a direct hot water connection – and these are then more expensive. Therefore, before buying a new one, check whether your old washing machine is designed for the supply of hot water. For more information, please refer to the operating instructions or contact the manufacturer.
This is how it works: washing machine to hot water connection
In most households there is a corner valve with a cold and hot water connection. the latter is connected to the sink, so it is already occupied. To additionally connect the washing machine, you need a hot water double connection corner valve. This is available at hardware stores or plumbing supply stores from about twelve euros.
This is what such a valve looks like, here an example from grohe.
As a rule, the connection should be made by a "professional" ran. After all, plenty of water flows when you wash. An incorrectly connected machine can cause a lot of damage.
Hobby plumbers save on the fitter
However, if you are a hobby plumber, you can save yourself the trouble of a fitter: turn off the main water tap as a precaution and install the new hot water double connection corner valve using water pump pliers. At the end, seal it with a teflon tape and check if it is tight – so turn on the main water tap again and water march!
this is how much energy you can save
How much energy you actually save depends primarily on how often you wash and how large the piles of laundry are.
A single household saves about five to ten euros a year in electricity costs.
For a 4-person household, the electricity savings are approximately 25 to 30 euros per year.
Sure, these are not large amounts for a single machine. But the more people who reduce their energy consumption in this way, the greater the sustainable result over a year.
The 3 advantages of the hot water connection
1. Save time
Since the appliance does not have to heat up for as long with a warm water supply, the rinsing process is noticeably shorter.
2. Reduce costs
Electricity costs of the washing machine decrease – depending on how the water is heated. The cost savings in a four-person household amount to about 15 to 25 euros a year.
3. Save the machine
Shorter heating times protect the heating element of the machine, thus extending its service life.