If you brought home any new appliances recently, you no doubt noticed something strange. They look great, but take forever to work.
The Department of Energy is considering fixing this problem, specifically when it comes to dishwashers, and has asked for public comment.
How many hours should it take to wash a load of dishes or clothes? How about less than one.
In fact, prior to 1983 most dishwashers did cycle in under an hour … but then government bureaucrats got to work “fixing” things. DOE began regulating dishwashers that same year, and Congress joined the act in 1987 by passing the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act (NAECA) establishing efficiency standards dishwashers. Nothing has worked quite as well since.
Even worse, very little energy is saved by these standards. And while water use has been cut somewhat – a typical dishwasher might have used 10 gallons in the 80’s and only 5 gallons today – no one knows how much this “savings” is offset by people having to wash clothes twice in order to get the really tough stains out. What we are wasting, on the other hand, is a lot of human time.
Labor saving devices were among the great advancements of the 20th century. They freed people to use their time in more productive and satisfying ways.
Green ideology led the Department of Energy to make our appliances slow and ineffective. The cult of scarcity that drove past decisions doesn’t hold up when we examine the facts.