Eco Tip – Save energy and money with the weekly wash

THIS ECOTIP is based on a January 2022 report by Which? It can be read without being a Which? Member on

It offers the following key points.

  • On average, switching from 40°C to 30°C saved 38% energy, and going down to 20°C saved 62%. The average washing machine costs about £38 a year in energy (before recent price increases) to run four washes a week.
  • Lowering the temperature doesn’t mean you get a bad wash unless clothes are very soiled. Switching to a liquid detergent will help shift tough stains at lower temperatures.
  • In tests, some dryers ended up using 50% more electricity after 20 loads than for the first load, because of blocked filters. Remove these from the bottom of the dryer and clean out the large blobs of dust and fluff by hand and then rinse until clean under the tap. Remember to let the filter cool before cleaning and dry completely before putting back in the machine. Do this at least every 10 cycles. More dryer tips are available online.

Please remember that the energy used in running a tumble dryer is usually more than the energy used for the wash, so that hanging the clothes out on a line to dry is a better eco-tip than changing the wash temperature. Doing both is best!