GE Online Visualisation Reveals the Secret Life of Appliances

Sure, a new air-conditioner will run you a couple hundred bucks. But how much will it cost you to operate? And how much are your existing appliances costing you? (Even if you have a Kill-a-Watt you can use to figure out how much energy your appliances are using at home, doing the math can still be a chore.) Now, a new tool from GE and Pentagram offers an easy alternative: the Home Appliance Energy Use calculator.

This handy little visualization tool–which comes to us by way of TreeHugger–displays all of our most common home appliances in the form of an easy-to-recognize little icon. Just select your state of residence (as electricity prices vary from one region to another) then select costs in A) dollars, B) watts, C) gallons of gas, or D) killawatt hours. Each icon will reveal exactly how much that appliance is costing you (and the earth) on an annual basis.


image via Treehugger

This tool seems like a great way to get a sense not only for cost breakdowns by appliance at home (the refrigerator, by the way, is the worst offender) but also the likely costs of operation associated with a new purchase, such as an electric blanket, humidifier or curling iron. The calculator also provides data on how much an Energy Star-rated appliance might save you over a conventional model, providing an easy way to visualize and calculate the benefits of installing smart appliances.

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Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.

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