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Upright Vacuum Sweeps Up the Competition in #EnergyFaceoff Round Two

November 12, 2014 - 10:17am

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The vacuum takes the title of most efficient in #EnergyFaceoff round two. | Graphic courtesy of Stacy Buchanan, National Renewable Energy Laboratory

The vacuum takes the title of most efficient in #EnergyFaceoff round two. | Graphic courtesy of Stacy Buchanan, National Renewable Energy Laboratory

If you're a regular user of hair dryers and vacuum cleaners, you likely spend similar amounts of time each week using these noisy appliances. While a hair dryer might be used for a few minutes each day, you probably use the vacuum for one or two longer stretches. But how do the costs shake out over the year?

Once again, using estimated wattages from Home Energy Saver and following the steps for calculating annual energy use and cost on Energy Saver, here is the estimate of annual costs for each:

Vacuum

Vacuum: 297 W

(297 x 1)/1000 = .297 kWh per week (weekly consumption)
.297 kWh/week x 52 weeks = 15.44 kWh (annual energy consumption)
15.44 kWh x $0.11/kWh = $1.70 per year

Hair dryer

Hair dryer: 710 W

(710 x 1)/1000 = .710 kWh per week (weekly consumption)
.710 kWh/week x 52 weeks = 36.92 kWh (annual energy consumption)
36.92 kWh x $0.11 = $4.06 per year

Assuming similar time spent using both, you may be surprised to learn that the little hand-held hair dryer costs more to operate than the much larger upright vacuum cleaner. While neither will break the bank, and this isn't a matter of deciding which to use, it is a good example of how we might wrongly assume one product is more efficient than another.

Did you guess right on this #EnergyFaceoff matchup?
 

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