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How much does it cost to run the washing machine?

Updated February 21, 2017

The amount of energy a washing machine uses will depend on the model of the machine, the capacity of the machine and the temperature of the water used during each load. Knowing some basic information on how to use your washing machine can help you to conserve water and may lower your utility bills.

Top Loaders and Electric Water Heater

A top loading washing machine will cost a little more than a front loading washing machine. With the price of electricity at 11 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) and the top loader uses 40 gallons of water at 0.166 kWh per gallon, a load done with hot water will cost 37cents and a warm wash will cost 18 cents because it uses 50 per cent hot water and 50 per cent cold water. The electricity cost will be 3 cents per load (11 cents per kWh x 0.26). Formula: gallons x 0.166 kWh x cost per kWh.

Top Loaders and Gas Water Heaters

A top loading washing machine using gas is cheaper than using one with electricity. With the price of gas at 90p per therm and the top loader uses 40 gallons of water at 0.0089 therms per gallon, a load done with hot water will cost 25 cents and a warm wash will cost 13 cents because it uses 50 per cent hot water and 50 per cent cold water. The electricity cost will be 3 cents per load (11 cents per kWh x 0.26). Formula: gallons x 0.0089 therms x cost per therm.

Front Loaders and Electric Water Heaters

The cost for a front loader using an electric water heater to heat the water will cost 11cents per kWh. For hot washes, it will cost 23 cents because the front loader uses 12.7 gallons of water per wash cycle at 0.166 kWh per gallon. The warm wash will cost 12 cents and the warm rinse will cost about 4 cents. The electricity cost will be 3 cents per load (11 cents per kWh x 0.26).

Front Loaders and Gas Water Heaters

The cost for a front loader using a gas water heater to heat the water will cost $1.42 per therm. For hot washes, it will cost 16 cents because the front loader uses 12.7 gallons of water per wash cycle at 0.0089 therms per gallon. The warm wash will cost 8 cents and the warm rinse will cost about 1 cent. The electricity cost will be 3 cents per load (11 cents per kWh x 0.26).

Water Costs

The cost of water per load with a front loader would be 4 cents if water is $2.81 per 1000 gallons and the washer uses only 14.7 gallons of water per load. The cost of the water for a top loader would be 11cents because the top loader uses 40 gallons per load.

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About the Author

Pamela Gardapee is a writer with more than seven years experience writing Web content. Being functional in finances, home projects and computers has allowed Gardapee to give her readers valuable information. She studied accounting, computers and writing before offering her tax, computer and writing services to others.