The eco mode of a washing machine or dishwasher is an economical programme, focused on saving resources and its efficient management.
Studies by a consumer association in Spain concluded that the eco mode is capable of reducing electricity consumption by 33% and water consumption by 36% compared to a normal laundry cycle.
However, the study also highlighted the efficacy, duration or rinsing of a wash in the echo programme.
- the average duration of an echo programme was 39 minutes longer than that of a normal programme.
- lowering the water temperature (in dishwashers below 50ºC and in washing machines at 40ºC) means saving electricity, although it does not clean as well as higher temperatures (stains and persistent food scraps may not be completely eliminated).
Energy labelling is the key
The energy labelling of the appliance is the true reference when it comes to knowing the efficiency of a washing machine or a dishwasher.
The energy efficiency of a dishwasher or washing machine is determined by several factors, including the amount/pressure of water, the energy consumed and the length of the cycle.
In a short programme much more water is used, and more electrical power and electricity consumption are required. Short programmes are certainly not the most efficient.
However, it may be the case that a normal programme of a highly efficient appliance (label A) ends up being significantly more efficient than an appliance in eco mode.
From March 2021 all appliances must be accompanied by a guide that reports on the use of energy and water, as well as aspects such as noise or capacity. Thanks to this guide we will be able to know clearly the use of resources in each programme, being able to assess whether the eco programme is really worthwhile for us.
Finally, it is important to emphasize the maintenance of appliances, since only a washing machine or dishwasher in an optimal state maintain the consumption parameters of its specifications. In addition, breakdowns are avoided and the life of the device is extended.