|Green Tea Fridge by Amana. Pretty but small inside. Read below...Photo Credit: Kitchens.com|
According to this post on LivingGreen101 a company in Los Angeles called Active Appliances helps fix and repair old appliances rather than pushing customers to upgrade to the "new and efficient" models (aka "expensive".) The company believes that repairing an old appliance is a form of staying green. Fixing something broken and using it a little longer is their eco friendly solution to seeing tons of appliances junked and clogging up the landfills. They fix washers, dryers, air conditioners, freezers, refrigerators and dishwashers just to name a few.
This makes sense. Even though some metal may be scrapped or cashed in, what about the plastic parts in your fridge? They will take millions of years to break down in a landfill ! No one goes around saving or up-cycling old plastic fridge drawers now do they?
Do the Math and See How It Adds Up
Although it is true that some models are more energy efficient these days, they are also sometimes not as heavy duty as the older. For instance, my new Amana Green Tea fridge has a freezer way too small for our household. Cute, yes. Functional, no. It probably saves me $4 on my electric bill if that each month. However, I can't keep more than a few items in there. My solution was to put a freezer in my basement in addition to the new fridge in the kitchen, spending energy twice as fast. Probably an extra $14-$18 on my energy bill each month. It would have been better if I could have had my old fridge repaired, and been able to use one appliance for my refrigerator and freezer needs. Shame on me, as I did not do the math.
As far as my old dryer, the heating element went up. I didn't even get a repair estimate. I bought a new dryer. Oooohhhhh ahhhhhh pretty. My new energy saver energy efficient dryer holds 1/3 less in a load than my old dryer. I also find when I cram a blanket in there, I have to use a cycle and a half. I thought something was wrong with it, but being under warranty it checked out fine. So I'm drying big comforters on 1.5 cycles. Had I been able to fix my old dryer, I would have been saving a whole dry cycle once every four loads of clothes and only needing one cycle to do my big blankets. The electric bill would have been in my favor to keep the old dryer.
I think Active Appliances are onto something and the truth is simple: you should consult an expert before automatically trashing your appliance. If you are in Los Angeles, talk to Active Appliance, as their long list of Press mentions include Forbes Magazine.
Connect with them here.