The Environmental Tragedy of Tossed Aside Appliances

It certainly will not surprise many people to know that there are many ways that they can make their personal practices more environmentally friendly. After all, most people are making strides to reduce their impact on the environment. However, there is one area that many people may not consider that can have a huge impact – repairing appliances instead of replacing them.


What is the Ecological Impact to Replacing My Appliances?

Many people are quick to replace an appliance when it experiences a problem. For many, this seems like a convenient solution and simply a facet of life. However, this creates an extraordinary amount of waste. Appliances that are tossed aside create over 57 million tons of waste every year. That’s the equivalent of scrapping the 5,600 Eiffel Towers each year into landfills. Included in this is many tons of things that do not quickly break down like plastics and rubbers.


The greatest amount of waste (in kilogram per person) is from Norway followed by Sweden, the United Kingdom, Liechtenstein, and Denmark. However, all nations in Europe can take efforts to reduce their waste as electronic waste is the world’s fastest growing source of waste.


What Can I Do to Help Reduce This Waste?

There are many things that you can do to reduce electronic waste. When it comes to appliances, the biggest thing is to have them repaired rather than replaced. Whether you have a dishwasher that won’t drain, heating unit that makes a loud noise, or refrigerator whose ice maker no longer functions, repairing the appliance has many benefits.


Obviously, a repaired appliance keeps that piece of equipment in your home and out of a landfill. However, there are also a few other benefits for you in opting for repair over replacement. First, you will save money as repairs are almost always much more affordable than buying a new appliance. When you consider that a repair can add years of longevity to appliances, this savings begins to get very significant over time.


In fact, the EU is wanting to help consumers to opt to repair appliances instead of replacing them. A new law seeks to require manufacturers to design their appliances in a manner that makes them easier to repair. This will not only help make it easier for technicians to make repairs to appliances but likely reduce the cost of repairs as they won’t take as long.


Isn’t It Better to Buy a More Environmentally Friendly Appliance?

It is definitely true that appliances continue to get better in terms of their energy efficiency. When it is time to replace an old appliance (i.e. the cost of repair is more than the cost of buying a new appliance or it frequently needs major repairs), purchasing an environmentally friendly model is a great idea.


However, purchasing a more environmentally friendly appliance when an existing appliance can be easily repaired is not good for the environment as the energy savings are more than offset by the large amount of waste generated from sending the appliance to the landfill. Thus, while you should certainly invest in energy efficient appliances, you should only do so when repairing an existing one is no longer an option.


We are happy to help you with any and all repairs for your appliances. Feel free to contact us, and we will gladly help to do our part to reduce appliance waste.

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