Saving trick washing machines: expensive beats cheap

Matthias Urbach

the purchase price of a washing machine is nothing compared to the running costs of. Over the lifetime of the machine, you can expect to pay far more than 1.000 euro for water and electricity – even for a machine with the best energy class (A+++).

A washing machine lasts 13 years on average. If you buy the cheapest machine, you end up giving away money, because the cost of electricity and water eats up the savings on the purchase. The costs for water are even double: once for the clean water and once for the wastewater.

for every 100 liters of water consumed (per year) by the cheaper machine, you pay an extra 5 euros over its lifetime. In the case of electricity, it is 4.50 euros per kilowatt hour of additional consumption. The consumption values are printed on the energy label attached to the machine in the store.

300 euro difference between two "A+++" washing machines

We have looked at two bosch models for illustration: both front loaders, for seven kilos of laundry. The cheaper model (WAE28220) is currently on sale for 379 euros, the other (WAT28320) for 449 euros. Based on 220 washes a year, which is realistic for a family, the cheap machine costs almost 1.300 euro in operation, the better one only around 1.000 euro. We have included the cost of electricity and water in the calculation.

Annoying: the energy class is only a very rough guide. Both machines have "A+++. So it’s usually worth spending a little more for the energy- and water-saving machine. In our example, a family has already paid out the 70 euros for the higher purchase price after three years.

By the way: when the machine is not completely full, the energy and water consumption of many washing machines is hardly any lower. This is a problem for singles in particular, because they rarely get a 7-kilo drum full. For singles, too, it is therefore worth buying the more expensive machine.

By the way, the more expensive model has a few other advantages, among other things it is much quieter.

Unfortunately, not everyone can actually save the full amount of the lower water costs for themselves: in large apartment buildings, this requires a separate water meter.

This is how we have calculated

For the calculation, we have only considered the consumption costs for electricity and water, not the additional fixed costs such as basic charges. This led to the following assumptions: electricity price 28 cents per kilowatt hour, drinking water costs 1.76 euros per 1.000 liters, waste water costs 2.11 euros per 1.000 liters. Lifetime 13 years. 25 percent more power consumption in everyday operation compared to the theoretical data on the energy label.

Matthias Urbach

As deputy editor-in-chief, Matthias Urbach is responsible for the newsletter, cooperations and the special editorial projects of finanztip. As a graduate physicist and graduate of the henri nannen school, he combines analytical and editorial know-how. Previous positions include publishing director at springernature-wissenschaftsverlag and head of taz.De active.

Matthias Urbach

stand: 14. July 2017

As deputy editor-in-chief, matthias urbach is responsible for finanztip’s newsletter, cooperations and editorial special projects. As a graduate physicist and graduate of the henri nannen school, he combines analytical and editorial know-how. Previous positions include publishing director at springernature-wissenschaftsverlag and head of taz.De active.

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23 comments

Much worse. That one many
washing machines probably can no longer be repaired. Our 2006 bosch was super.
BUT the shock absorbers were on
plastic leach tank "stuck" together
now miele classic W1 where lt. Statement from miele the shock absorbers
are screwed from both sides.

Another tip,
put the detergent directly into the drum, on top of the laundry.
The drawer for filling remains nice and clean. Only clear water runs through
and it no longer smells.

I go to the washing center…3,50 for laundry and 1,50 for drying…5 euro ..In an hour everything ready and dry … as a single about 2 times a month.Makes 10 euro.times 12 equals 120 euro..In 13 years running time to compare with a washing machine…makes together 1560 euro cost total..It is necessary to take into account the purchase of the washing machine and its consumption..700 for a machine + about 1000 eus for water and electricity costs.Makes 1700,-yet ask. Oh yes..But yes…the travel costs to the washing center..Withm roller…ca 1,50 per ride…At my previous place of residence, however, only 15 cents…average calculated would be for the ottonormal consumer about 80 cents..

Two times a month. So I have to wash at least two times a week as a single.. Towels, pants sweaters t shirt underwear, bed stuff and what all there is.. In addition, I jog min 3 times a week and that I also put on only once of course.

In addition to all the shortcomings of the "practical test" already described, it should also be said that the title is unfortunately highly misleading, especially since the price difference between the two machines is almost marginal. More interesting would be, how the ratio between a high priced washing machine (>700 EUR) and a cheap (<350 EUR) behaves.

Hello,I would like to say that this example is really unfortunate,because good washing machines today have short wash programs,z.B. Siemens,15-20 min,and others
to the volume : for a 4 – person household normally a 7-8 kilo drum is enough
what kind of dirty laundry we have today, a little sweaty, but otherwise ?
In a household with children, even that is enough, because to do everything in one wash is not possible.If the man is also a craftsman, must be washed because of possible strong dirt extra, even then a 7-8 kilo machine is enough.
In the rarest cases must be washed 2 hours, and: good machines have an automatic water control, and an ironing drying automatic, and some finesse more
so, spend a little more is worth it, I can fully confirm
miele washing machine, runs for 12 years, twice a small thing replaced itself.And the machine also runs very energy-conscious, and with little laundry little water is used :automatically
nice wash day
juergen H

Use of funds not taken into account! If you buy a cheaper washing machine, you can invest the money you save on the stock market and then have a free washing machine after 10 years, including the purchase of a new one. operating costs(!) had. water saving is (currently still) nonsense in germany! On the contrary, we should use more water again, because the sewers are starting to become defective and must be flushed expensive. In Spain, of course, this is to be seen quite differently and if the drought here becomes the standard can be different. After the full program we always run the flash program again without detergent to remove the detergent residues properly from the laundry. And it should be clear for intelligent people: leave drawer and door open after use!

The sewerage system needs to be flushed at the most, where unnecessarily much garbage is sunk in the drain and the few liters of the washing machine do not solve the problem. However, you are right in another way, especially in rural areas where the population is decreasing and people are saving drinking water, the u.A. Because of the extinguishing water supply in the past oversized drinking water pipes to be flushed regularly to protect against germs. A few hundred cubic meters of drinking water run down the nearest manhole.

First family, now single, wash with a rather aged AEG lavamat (at least 20 years old) on and on. Even a real KO-repair I have done myself. The clamping ring for the rubber seal had been blown out due to imbalance. I was lucky and imaginative when I put it all together. Normal standard programs 40 – 60°, rarely 90° (1 x per month). additive only lime stopper, whitener, powder detergent and for wool liquid. Always let air/dry for two days after washing, hatch and detergent drawer open, towel down in the ring of the seal. It has already survived two moves without damage. Empty the sieve from time to time. It does not get any cheaper. The next will certainly again a heavy. I think tests can only provide an orientation. Use/application is certainly very different.

Many thanks for the very interesting article.

Thank you for your effort to provide us with a calculation example, however, these calculations are not very meaningful for me personally because:
1. No one knows beforehand whether a washing machine will really last 13 years (perhaps only the manufacturer – "planned obsolescence")
2. electricity or water could become cheaper in the next few years
3. wear = higher consumption
4. Are the prices incl. Or excl. Delivery costs ? The bosch WAE28220 you get here incl. Delivery http://bit.Ly/2viaqmw

I have already read statistics that a washing machine costs on average only approx. 7-8 years lasts.

Theory and practice are known unfortunately often far apart ..

Matthias Urbach

matthias urbach says:

The 13 years shelf life I took from an estimate of the Federal Environment Agency. The prices are without delivery (these costs are identical for all devices).

My first miele I had 31 years, my second since october 2000, still super with allwater connection and heated with dsolarwasser.

Yes, that is miele. Except for the refrigerator we have only miele appliances. First washing machine 22 years and the second still running for 23 years.

Which fairy tale are you then sat on, that any machine today lasts longer than 2 – 4 years ? This was once the case, today there is the planned useful life and the companies make sure that customers have to buy new machines regularly. Dream on ………..

the whole thing is as simple as described in the article (unfortunately)!) really not.
First of all, it’s good that finanztip adds a flat rate of 25% to the stated energy consumption – and it’s also good that they point out the noise behavior, since there are really striking differences.

In practice, however, many consumers will use considerably more than this 25%. The absolute majority of consumers is not aware that to achieve the A+++ values only the cotton program at 40 ° resp. 60°C and additionally activated eco-function may be used. And even the minority, who are aware of this problem, use this program sequence in this way only if the associated negative side effects are acceptable for the specific washing occasion.

These side effects have already been mentioned by some of the previous authors:
* Extremely prolonged wash cycle, depending on the machine model over 4 hours
* the washing is done at a much lower temperature than the one actually selected (there is no other way to save electricity) – the dirty machine from above is a consequence of this, the temperatures are not sufficient to kill bacteria
* low water level during washing (less water has to be heated, further energy saving) – correspondingly higher mechanical load and wear of the laundry

If you have to buy new laundry sooner because of the increased wear and tear of washing, the savings from the reduced water consumption are guaranteed to be null and void again.

The finanztip calculation then also suffers from the assumption that the difference in consumption between the two machines remains proportional when the eco-function is inactive. However, this is a completely unproven assumption and would have to be tested in any case on the basis of the actual machines for a valid calculation.

My washing practice looks in the end so that I use depending on the case quite the eco program, but just as consciously also programs such as "hygiene 60 °", where the power consumption is sometimes 3x higher (power meter available), but where I can then also be sure that both the laundry is really clean and also the machine does not begin to stink in the long term.

A few words about the ever larger drums. They also have quite tangible technical disadvantages. As long as the outer housing of the washing machine does not increase in size, a larger drum means less "freedom of movement" of the drum within the machine. For some time now, therefore, all machines have been equipped with an electronic unbalance control (previously this was only available on high-priced models for reasons of convenience) in order to be able to spin safely at all. If heavy/large laundry pieces are washed, it is much more difficult for an 8kg-machine than e.g. an 8kg-machine. a 6kg model to spin the wash load successfully; with a bit of bad luck, the speed will be greatly reduced or the spin will be aborted completely after many unsuccessful attempts. Have fun, who wants to use the dryer afterwards..

Daniel Pohler

daniel pohler says:

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